diabetes-528678_1920November is National Diabetes Month, and this year’s theme is Diabetes Education and Support: Everyone Has a Role. What’s Yours?

If you’re one of the almost 30 million children and adults living with diabetes, according to the American Diabetes Association, you already feel your role is immense. Every day you work to monitor your glucose level, or blood sugar; take one or more medications to help regulate it; and watch everything you eat – all just to avoid further complications. But what if you could do just a little more, and eventually eliminate your diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes can be reversed.

Study results published in 2011 found that type 2 diabetes can be reversed through dietary energy restriction alone. Dietary energy is provided by foods that supply no nutrients, but are necessary for your body to function properly. These are your fats, carbs, and proteins, and the study finds that by reducing your intake of these sources of energy you can reverse your type 2 diabetes diagnosis. Furthermore, through a restricted, low-calorie diet, the study’s participants were able to normalize their blood sugar in just one week.

Understanding every diabetes patient is different, the key takeaway is that type 2 diabetes can be reversed. However, for those considering bariatric surgery, the point is not about weight loss, as demonstrated in other research, but rather through a series of lifestyle changes, including diet. Here are four positive decisions that can make all the difference in reversing type 2 diabetes.

Four ways to reverse type 2 diabetes:

  1. Eat a balanced diet. Knowing that type 2 diabetes patients, and all humans, should minimize their intake of fats, carbs, and proteins, plan a diet that gives greater weight to vegetables and fruits. In fact, give them half the plate at every meal. (Learn three reasons for this here.)
  2. Set a realistic goal. When setting a goal for weight loss to assist in type 2 diabetes reversal, do it in a safe, reasonable manner. While a general guideline is for loss at one to two pounds per week, an effective goal should be based on the individual patient and may be greater.
  3. Get regular exercise. In order to get the pounds off, and more importantly keep them off, type 2 diabetes patients must engage in regular physical activity. Like with overall weight loss, this should be approached safely to ensure a healthy outcome. Low-impact exercises like walking or yoga are great ways to get started.
  4. Enlist the help of a certified health coach. Take the guesswork out of the points above when you work with a certified health coach to put you on a safe path towards reversing diabetes. A certified health coach can take your unique situation and apply a diet and exercise plan, as well as provide ongoing guidance and motivation, to help you achieve this great and wonderful goal.

Imagine living without medication, or without the fear that comes from having diabetes. Imagine feeling good, having more energy, and being more confident. This can all happen for you when you expand your role in managing your diabetes through simple lifestyle changes.

As a certified health coach and trained medical professional, I welcome the opportunity to help you reverse type 2 diabetes. Contact me for an in-person or virtual appointment today.

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