Diabetes



Diabetes is a condition where either the pancreas does not produce enough insulin (or any insulin as in type 1 diabetes) or their is insulin resistance that causes elevated glucose levels in the blood stream and dysfunction of energy storage in cells. This results in many long-term complications, such as blindness, kidney dysfunction, nerve damage, increase in heart disease risk, and amputations.

 
  • Overview
  • Ask The Doctor
  • Related Info
  • Success Stories

Overview


A Nutritarian diet is key to preventing, improving, and reversing type 2 diabetes and is critical for the health and survival of type 1 diabetics. Diabetes affects roughly 135 million people worldwide, with more than 16 million Americans suffering from diabetes. More than 70 percent of the adults with Type 2 diabetes die of heart attacks or strokes. In diabetes mellitus type 2 and gestational diabetes, the insulin produced by the pancreas is not sufficient enough to drive the glucose out of the bloodstream and into cells. Diabetes mellitus type 1 results from the autoimmune destruction of the beta cells of the pancreas, which produce insulin. While patients with type 1 diabetes can significantly improve their glucose control and risk of complications, type 2 diabetes and gestational diabetes can be totally reversed with a Nutritarian diet.

Medications for diabetes have significant risks and side effects including heart failure and cancer. Many oral medications and insulin worsen weight gain, which worsens insulin resistance, leading to the need for more medications thus increasing the complications of diabetes. Only a Nutritarian diet that is filled with micronutrient-dense vegetables, fruits, beans, nuts, and seeds can transform people quickly, yet permanently, to a favorable weight and repair damaged cells. This way of eating helps with weight loss, restores insulin sensitivity, lowers glucose numbers, restores pancreatic function, decreases the risk of long-term complications, and significantly improves quality of life. A Nutritarian diet is the answer to the diabetes epidemic.

 

Ask The Doctor


The following are sample questions from the Ask the Doctor Community Platinum and higher members can post their health questions directly to Dr. Fuhrman. (All members can browse questions and answers.)

Q.

I have been told that by the time type 2 diabetes is diagnosed a person has probably lost 75-80% of his beta cells in the pancreas and that those that remain can probably handle the glucose if the patient follows a strict exercise program and diet. I have also been told that these dead beta cells cannot come back and will never again produce insulin – that that’s the very definition of diabetes. So the disease is controllable but not curable. Is this correct?

A.

It depends on your definition of cured. Even though they have lost the function of some beta cells, most Type II diabetics can still secrete enough insulin to handle the needs of a normal weight body eating healthfully. Therefore, they can have normal (non-diabetic) blood glucose readings without medications. Should they eat unhealthful or gain back the weight their diabetes would come back. It is a semantical argument, but I consider it reversed. The tendency to develop diabetes is still there, though, if they do not take excellent care of their health. I strongly recommend all those with diabetes read my book on this subject, The End of Diabetes.

 
Q.

My brother takes insulin for type 2 diabetes. I’ve convinced him to try the 6 week challenge. He’s agreed to do so but doesn’t want to give up meat and he doesn’t eat fish.

Is there anything he should be doing differently because of the diabetes? He would really like to get off of the

A.

This should be done with caution and under close supervision by his diabetes doctor in order to decrease the dosage of insulin right at the start, most likely to prevent a low blood sugar. Discuss this with him so that he doesn’t create risk by trying to help himself. Generally, one has to decrease the insulin dose by 25-30% or so depending on how compliant the patient is on the diet. The emphasis for diabetes is to eat winter squashes and legumes (beans, lentils, peas) as the primary starchy food and eat unlimited non-starchy vegetables, mushrooms, etc. Also, eat primarily low or moderately low glycemic index fruits such as berries. Have him join and check in on my website or schedule an appointment with one of us to help him more closely if he needs it, but he should at least communicate with his doctor often. Remember, my book, The End of Diabetes, gives specific advice to those with diabetes and their physicians, so they can reverse their disease effectively and safely. It is imperative he reads that.

 
Q.

Do you maintain that a type 2 diabetic who is on a high nutrient diet such as yours will have their body change to normal and become non-diabetic?

A.

Yes. You are correct. Type 2 diabetes occurs largely because:

  1. the insulin receptors on muscles and other cells are clogged with fat, so insulin cannot do its job and
  2. excessive abdominal body fat generates cytokines that interfere with the action of insulin.

Maintaining a nutrient-dense, Nutritarian diet unclogs the insulin receptors and melts away excessive abdominal body fat. As a result, Type 2 diabetes predictably fades away in a relatively short time, depending on how faithfully one adheres to the dietary program and if one is exercising regularly. So, it is a reasonable expectation to become diabetes-free from maintaining a Nutritarian diet and lifestyle. I strongly suggest you read my book, The End of Diabetes.

 
Q.

I’m trying to use Dr. Fuhrman’s program to deal with type 2 diabetes. My proposal is to eat 1/2 cup of oatmeal with almond milk and 1 cup blueberries for breakfast; a large salad at noon; juiced kale, apples, lemon, and ginger as a snack; and a cup of anti-cancer soup with an apple or orange for dinner. Will this work? Actually, it seems like a ton of food. I was thinking of having some Stevia with my oatmeal (original instant oatmeal without sugar) also, with a little plain yogurt in the morning. What do you think? I’m not a cook but can manage the above food. More than that is difficult.

I am taking 10 units of Lantis at night, 1000 mg Metformin twice a day, and 10 mg of Glipizide before breakfast. I’m 6 feet tall, 247 pounds. I walk 30 minutes twice a week. The Lantis and Metformin make me itch even when taken with food, so I assume I’m allergic. What should I do?

A.

Use steel cut oatmeal and not the instant. Add cinnamon to the oatmeal instead of stevia and soy or almond milk instead of yogurt. Make sure you’re adding 1 oz. seeds/walnuts a day. Even though you’re not a cook, with some planning, you’ll be amazed at how easy it is to prepare healthy food for the week.

Your doctor should adjust your insulin now and likely eliminate it within a few days. You also need to slowly discontinue the Glipizide, as that medication can prevent weight loss and accelerate the progression of diabetes. As you follow this dietary approach and come off the Glipizide and insulin, the itching will likely stop.

 
Q.

Help! My 6-year-old granddaughter was just diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. The family is devastated. What should we do nutritionally for her?

A.

You should set up an appointment at our office, and read the book The End of Diabetes ASAP. Newly diagnosed children with diabetes can become non-diabetic or nearly so with perfect a Nutritarian eating style. Plus, it is lifesaving for their future, preventing the dangerous mix between insulin and SAD eating.

 
Q.

I would like to know what kind of fast is suitable for type 1 diabetics.

I have tried a 10 day juice fast, went off insulin, and had very good results. I had been eating a Nutritarian diet for 6 months beforehand.

What diet do you recommend to break the fast? Is a standard Nutritarian diet suitable, or shall I restrict it knowing that my metabolism will be slower for another 6 weeks?

A.

I would not recommend a juice fast and no insulin for a type 1 diabetic. You should be very strict on the diet with mostly greens and the low carb vegetables, seeds, nuts, and beans (and a small amount of low sugar fruits such as berries) as the only carbohydrate source. The main thing is to read my book, The End of Diabetes, and get guidance to protect your long-term health. What you do over a limited period of time will not be effective at protecting you against health issues 20 to 40 years from now. You need to modify your dietary style forever.

 
Q.

How much does the Nutritarian diet help type 1 diabetics?

A.

It makes the difference between vicious and life threatening medical complications and an early death with instead a lengthy and healthy life. Less medication use, a normal weight, no blood sugar highs and lows, no heart disease and strokes; a Nutritarian diet is more important for a type one than any other because traditional diets and the typical recommendations by dieticians for this group are so deadly. I give lots of information and guidance for type 1 diabetes in my book, The End of Diabetes.

 
Q.

Do the diabetes menu plans apply to gestational diabetes?

She read ETL a few years ago - and her diet is mostly vegetarian with some dairy and fish. I don’t know if she will be open to deviate from the recommended menu from the dieticians who were referred by her doctor, but I will share with her.

She is taking direction from the OBGyn - their next step is to get a closer look at the size of the baby. They have not been concerned about her weight gain as they said she started underweight before pregnancy. My hunch is the weight gain accelerated under the dietician plan.

A.

Yes, but 2 ounces of seeds and nuts a day are recommended. I have a program specifically designed for gestational diabetes in my book, The End of Diabetes.

You can’t have it both ways. If she has gestational diabetes it means she gained too much weight with the pregnancy. The activity of insulin is blocked by fat cells, not by baby cells, and this is being made worse by the dietician’s advice and all the frequent feedings.

 
Q.

My wife is 32 weeks pregnant. No family history of diabetes. Age: 41. Height: 5’4". Weight before pregnancy: 105 lbs. She has gained 35-40 pounds total since getting pregnant. She failed the gestational diabetes test with borderline numbers, and her doctor put her on a program with a dietician to treat with diet.

The nutritionist program has her eating 6 meals a day: 3 meals and 3 snacks. They want her to have 70 grams of protein daily.

Breakfast - small 30-40 grams carbs, a serving of protein, a fat
Snack - 30-40 grams carbs, protein, no fat
Lunch - 45-60 grams carbs, protein, vegetable
Snack - 30-40 grams carbs, protein, no fat
Supper - 45-60 grams carbs, protein, vegetable
Snack before bed - 30-40 grams carbs, protein, no fat

She feels like she is eating too much and eating when not hungry on this diet. The bedtime snack is her least favorite but the dietician strongly recommends it. Her blood glucose levels have been nearly perfect since she started testing last week. Ketones have been normal.

We are a little concerned about her weight gain and size of the baby since starting this nutritionist recommended diet. Before getting on this diet, her weigh-ins and measurements were exactly on target. Last Friday the dietician showed she gained 4 pounds after 1 week of being on their diet. Her doctor also showed the baby measuring big and scheduled a sonogram for next week to get a closer look.

What are your thoughts on this recommended diet plan for her condition, and would you recommend a different approach to keep her blood glucose stable and mitigate the risk of the baby getting too big?

A.

I think advice from conventional nutritionists/dieticians is dangerous and in the dark ages. I can’t understand why anyone reading my books and newsletters would attempt to follow such advice.

I have detailed dietary advice and menu plans for diabetes, which she should follow.

Your wife has obviously gained too much weight with pregnancy and has not been following my dietary advice. The starting place is for her to read The End of Diabetes and follow the plan for gestational diabetes in the book precisely.

 
Q.

I am 16 weeks pregnant now and my OBGYN wants to do a routine glucose testing. Is this test really necessary? I am looking for a good argument if not. A major argument of mine is that I wouldn’t normally ingest such refined sugar and thus would not want to just for a "routine test."

A.

It really isn’t necessary for someone without diabetes in their family or a history of borderline or high blood sugars in the past or any symptoms of diabetes. Also, if you are not overweight, then the risk is even lower.

If the test were positive, meaning that you had gestational diabetes, then your doctor would just recommend that you eat better and not gain as much weight or even lose weight. We want you to do this regardless of these test results, which makes the test not that useful in your situation, if you successfully are eating properly as we recommend for pregnant women.

 
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