Originally published on postitiveimpactmagazine.com on September 23, 2011
By: Joel Fuhrman, M.D.
Yes, type 2 diabetes is reversible.
In over 90% of patients, type 2 diabetes can be effectively and relatively quickly reversed with excellent nutrition and exercise. I say – don’t treat your diabetes, don’t control your diabetes, instead, make the commitment to get rid of it!
Type 2 diabetes is a serious disease affecting hundreds of millions of people – it has been cited as the most challenging health problem in the 21st century. Type 2, or adult-onset, diabetes is marked by high levels of blood glucose (sugar), and is a disease of insulin resistance. It is a nutrition–related disease, one that is both preventable and reversible through nutritional methods and regular exercise.
Excess weight is a key factor in developing diabetes.
The more overweight you are, the greater your risk for developing type 2 diabetes. All our body’s cells are fueled by glucose, and insulin is needed to transport glucose into our cells. When there is more fat on the body, more insulin needs to be produced by the pancreas. Gaining twenty pounds of extra fat may force your pancreas to produce twice as much insulin as it did before. These constant high levels of insulin cause your cells and tissues to become insulin resistant. Then, after years of being overworked, the pancreas loses the ability to keep up with the huge insulin demands, and it may lose some degree of its insulin-producing capability.
Medications to control blood sugar don’t prevent diabetes complications.
Diabetes is associated with devastating complications including kidney failure, blindness, and cardiovascular disease. More than 80% of diabetes-related deaths are due to heart disease or stroke. Surgeons perform thousands of amputations each year due to diabetes complications. Conventional care for diabetics includes glucose-lowering drugs that they must take for the rest of their lives, and blood glucose monitoring to determine when it is necessary to change the dosage of these medications. Unfortunately, these patients develop a false sense of security, believing that keeping their blood glucose in a favorable range with medication will prevent any diabetes complications. This is not true – diabetics who take medications and continue to remain overweight and consume their disease-causing diet continue to damage their organs, develop complications, and die prematurely. The glucose-lowering medications themselves often cause more weight gain, exacerbating the insulin resistance. Some of these medications even carry increased risk of heart disease and stroke.
This suffering is tragic because excellent nutrition and exercise can reverse diabetes, and are much safer than conventional care.
Eat your veggies!
What should you do if you have diabetes?
How can you lower the high glucose levels that are slowly destroying your body; lower your lipids and blood pressure, lose weight and not take dangerous drugs that cause weight gain? Here is the simple answer – exercise and follow the best possible diet for diabetes. The best diet for longevity, heart disease and cancer prevention, and a high level of health is also the best diet for diabetes. That is a diet with a high nutrient per calorie ratio – a diet containing lots of non-starchy vegetables like greens, eggplant, tomatoes, mushrooms, onions, and garlic, plus beans, raw nuts and seeds, and limited fresh fruit and limited animal products, with no sweeteners or white flour. When those with diabetes eat in this style, it becomes relatively easy for them to eat liberally and still lose their excess weight easily. My experience has demonstrated that those choosing to follow my nutritional recommendations have their diabetes melt away astonishingly quickly, reducing or eliminating their need for medications, even before they have lost most of their excess weight. The human body has an amazing capacity to heal, even from diabetes. All we have to do is establish the optimal nutritional environment for healing with nutrient-rich foods and let the body do its work. A long, healthy life, free of diabetes and its tragic complications is possible, it can be yours.
Dr. Fuhrman is a New York Times bestselling author, nutritional researcher and board certified family physician specializing in nutritional medicine. Learn more by visiting his informative website at www.drfuhrman.com and his blog at www.diseaseproof.com.
Disclaimer: This article was written for educational purposes only. It is not intended to treat, diagnose, prescribe or heal any health condition or to replace standard medical treatment or advice.