Could a low-carbohydrate diet send Type 2 diabetes into remission?

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Credit: Getty Images
Credit: Getty Images
[An] analysis of 23 small trials found that low-carb diets worked better than other eating plans in helping people lose weight and send their type 2 diabetes into remission. That was true, at least, in the first six months.

By the one-year mark, most of the advantages of the low-carb lifestyle had vanished.

It’s not clear why, according to Grant Brinkworth, one of the researchers on the review. But it’s possible people had a tough time sticking with the diets.

Diet changes, in general, are often hard to sustain, said Brinkworth, a senior researcher with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization, Australia’s national science agency.

That said, people with type 2 diabetes might be able to kick-start some weight loss and better blood-sugar control with a low-carb diet, according to Brinkworth.

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Across the studies, low-carb plans did appear safe in the short term. The one red flag appeared at the one-year point, when people on the diets tended to show an increase in their LDL cholesterol (the “bad” kind).

It’s unclear, though, what that could mean for their health, Brinkworth said.

In the end, [dietician Julie] Stefanski said, there is no one-size-fits-all diet for people with diabetes.

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