Type 2 diabetes is an ever increasing problem in our society and every day more and more people, children included, are being diagnosed as pre-diabetic, or Type 2 Diabetics.
It is suggested for diabetics to avoid, or lower to a minimum, their carb intake. But does a low card diet really work for diabetic patients? Let’s take a closer look at things.
So can a low carb diet reverse type 2 diabetes? No.
Let’s state the facts – type 1 nor type 2 diabetes can be reversed.
With that being said let’s take a look at how type 2 diabetes comes about.
A person is insulin resistant, which is the precursor to being a pre-diabetic, which is of course the precursor to being a type 2 diabetic.
Type 2 diabetes is a hormonal disease, that hormone being insulin. Insulin pushes glucose into your blood stream and cells so that it can be used. When a person is insulin resistant this means getting blood sugar where it needs to go is a challenge.
The levels of insulin in their blood continues to rise and will just keep rising as the body keeps producing it. Eventually our body can’t keep our blood sugar (blood sugar chart) in the normal range (by producing enough insulin to control it) and so this is when someone is considered type 2 diabetic.
Insulin and carbs
If we look at the effect on insulin levels of carbs, we see a huge spike, which plummets shortly afterwards.
If we look at protein we see a much better picture, a steadier line. However if we look at fat, we see very little to no effect on insulin levels at all. I’ll say that again – fat has little to no insulin response. So if we’re to cut out the carbs (glucose), what should we replace it with?
A lot of low carbers would tell you protein, but no – it’s fat we need to replace it with. Fat has so many good qualities (think Omega 3), despite being vilified for so many years.
Fats have a high level satiety associated with them, a low level of insulin response and they make food taste good. A win on all fronts!
So if we cut out the excess of glucose, which is the trigger for insulin doesn’t this simply make sense? So what do we add in? But why cut out the carbs at all? Well because it’s a viscous cycle.
We eat carbs which makes our glucose levels go up, our body releases insulin to try to keep our blood sugar stable and this triggers hunger, fat storing and cravings. So then we eat more carbs! So if we skip the carbs in the first place, we never get on this merry go round.
Currently pre-diabetics and Type 2 diabetics are told to eat “whole grains”, but what is a whole grain anyway? There are so many foods touted as full of “whole grains”, but the reality is they have been processed to the point where the fibre has lost it’s benefit and are added to such low nutritional quality foods such as flour.
Be aware – our body does not need carbs, we literally have zero requirement for carbs. Our bodies product glucose from other foods and so they simply aren’t needed. We need protein, this is where we get our essential amino acids from, we need fat, this is where our fatty acids comes from, but carbs?
We don’t need a drop of carbs
Type 2 diabetes is in actual fact a form of “carb toxicity”, we’ve been overloaded with carbs and our body can’t deal with all this glucose. Carb intake is the single biggest trigger for blood sugar rise.
If we cut the carbs, we cut the glucose, which cuts the amount of insulin our bodies try to produce to control our blood sugar and the diabetes subsides.
If a person goes back to eating the way they previously had, the diabetes will return as well.
Long story short – diabetes cannot be reversed. However, eating less carbs can effectively keep your diabetes at bay.