Is It Possible to Reverse Diabetes?

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One of the most spread conditions in America is type 2 diabetes, a disease mostly influenced by factors which are controllable. The chronic illness can be deadly, ranking as the seventh most common death cause in the US.

Experts have stated for years that diabetes is incurable and can only be managed through monitoring blood sugar levels and insulin injections. However, recent studies show that diabetes might be reversible.

When talking about reversible diabetes, experts are split, but studies that show it is possible keep on piling up. To reverse diabetes, the patient must be persistent and work hard for it. A New York-based nutritionist, Jess Cording (M.S., RDN, CDN), explains that it’s vital for people living with diabetes to control their “blood sugar through lifestyle changes like diet tweaks and exercise.”

Research on Reversing Diabetes

Unfortunately for the ones that have Type 1 diabetes, it cannot be reversed because it is an autoimmune disease. However, type 2 diabetes can be reversed if a person adopts a healthy habit.

By reversing diabetes, we refer to the moment when the body can metabolize sugar, experts calling it “diabetes remission.”

Researchers at the University of Alabama Birmingham have conducted a study on 5,145 overweight adults with type 2 diabetes. The study participants randomly received an intensive weight-loss program, or a diabetes support and education program.

The weight-loss group reduced the intake of calories and worked out for more than 175 minutes per week. They also participated in counseling meetings.

The second group went to group counseling sessions every year, which focused on social support, diet, and physical activity.

After a year, 11.5% of the weight-loss group experienced diabetes remission, while the second group only had 2% remission.

After four years, 7.3% of the weight-loss group were in remission, compared to 2% of the second group which remained steady. Remission happened in both groups among those who lost more weight and had increased physical activity.

Some experts think that diabetes remission is a short period and that the disease will come back, but with the proper lifestyle, we say it’s an improvement and a positive way to look at things.