men's health

3 minute read

Can you reverse type 2 diabetes?

By Joe Young | Medically reviewed by Dr Luke Pratsides
can you reverse type 2 diabetes

So you’ve got diabetes. And you’re probably wondering whether you’ll be stuck with it forever. The bad news: there’s no cure. Once you’ve got it, you’ve got it. 

But we're not here just to tell you that. Type 2 diabetes can be put into remission so you can live without the burden. It’s not quite a cure but it’s the next best thing and all it takes is a few simple actions.

But first of all…

What’s meant by remission?

Type 2 diabetes was long thought of as a lifelong problem, but recent research has proven that lifestyle changes can lead to remission, meaning the chances of getting significant complications from diabetes like kidney damage, heart attacks, stroke and eye disease can be significantly reduced.    

It could always come back. The beta cells have been damaged and the underlying genetic factors contributing to diabetes aren’t magically gone. But it’s possible to go years without any issues from having it.

There are a few different definitions of remission, but the main point is to regain control of your blood sugars without needing medication. 

Let’s see how you can do it:

Lose some weight

A key driver towards remission is weight loss. But there’s no time for messing around - remission is more likely if you lose weight as soon as possible after diagnosis. And your chances are better if you lose a substantial amount of weight (about 15kg).

There's no guarantee it will work, but the health benefits have immense value regardless. Even slight weight loss (5% to 10% of body weight) can produce life-changing benefits, such as better blood pressure, cholesterol, and sugar levels. 

And reducing your weight even by a bit can improve your insulin sensitivity by a lot, making it more likely for it to go into remission. 

Try a low-carb diet 

Cutting out that weekly doughnut binge is one step to success. A low-carbohydrate diet is effective at controlling blood sugar levels. Eating more vegetables, keeping a food diary, avoiding sugary drinks, or investing in a split-portion plate help with weight loss and managing diabetes. 

This one is a call back - before the invention of insulin in 1921, a low-carb diet was the standard treatment for diabetics. There are plenty of recipes to keep it interesting. The more attractive you make it, the easier it’ll be. 

Exercise more 

Get moving. Exercise increases insulin sensitivity and glucose uptake in the muscles. We know it’s hard, but there are plenty of ways to fit activity into your day. Even if you really hate it. 

Quit smoking

As well as leaving you smelling like an ashtray, smoking can be a primary cause of type 2 diabetes. If you smoke, you’re 30%-40% more likely to get it. Stopping smoking after contracting diabetes can be a crucial factor behind beating it.

Smoking reduces control over your blood sugar levels. It makes it harder to manage and increases the risk of other side effects like heart and kidney disease. 

When it’s hard, enlist some extra help 

Balancing your goals, sleep, exercise, and diet is a daunting task. Losing weight on your own can seem impossible, so we've recruited a team of experts to back you every step of the way. 

Our advanced Weight Loss Plan features cutting-edge GLP-1 receptor agonists medications that activate the brain's appetite response, making you feel satisfied. 

Blood glucose monitors are also valuable tools to keep you on track with remission. They allow you to see the effects of exercise, certain foods, stress, sleep, and more on your blood sugar levels. 

how to put type 2 diabetes into remission

The numan take 

Play the hand you’re dealt - don’t let diabetes beat you. With weight loss, diet, and exercise, you can live like you don't have it.