When we think of diabetes, we tend to think it’s a condition we’ll be stuck with for life. However, new research out of London suggests that losing just 10 per cent of your weight within five years of being diagnosed of Type 2 Diabetes can significantly increase your chances of remission.
The study, published in the journal Diabetic Medicine, found that it was possible to see Type 2 diabetes remission without dramatic lifestyle changes.
“We’ve known for some time now that it’s possible to send diabetes into remission using fairly drastic measures such as intensive weight loss programmes and extreme calorie restriction,” said study author Hajira Dambha-Miller from the University of Cambridge.
“These interventions can be very challenging to individuals and difficult to achieve. But, our results suggest that it may be possible to get rid of diabetes, for at least five years, with a more modest weight loss of 10 per cent.”
An estimated 1 million aussies ( or just under 5 per cent of the population) had type 2 diabetes in 2018. The condition can lead to increase risk of heart disease and even blindness and amputations.
Type 2 diabetes is a progressive condition in which the body struggles to produce enough or use insulin efficiently to manage blood sugar levels.
While for many, the disease is life-long managed through lifestyle changes and medication. However, it is possible for insulin function to improve.
As part of the trial, scientists organised a prospective cohort study, recruiting 867 volunteers with newly diagnosed diabetes aged between 40 and 69.
At the five-year follow-up, 257 participants were in remission.
Interestingly, those who had achieved a weight loss of 10 per cent or more within the first five years of being diagnosed were twice as likely to enter remission compared to those who saw no changes on the scales.
However, scientists are now working to ensure that patients with type 2 diabetes best achieve sustained weight loss to help prevent the condition returning.