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5. Clinical trial reveals diet and exercise reverses type 2 diabetes

      A constant stream of research over recent years has found that many individuals diagnosed with the disease can effectively reverse the condition without the need for medication, using just lifestyle interventions. A clinical trial published recently at The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology which evaluates the efficacy of diet and exercise as a front-line type 2 diabetes treatment revealed that nearly two-thirds of patients achieved complete disease remission after just 12 months of lifestyle interventions. This new study presents some of the strongest evidence to date affirming the efficacy of diet and exercise in reversing type 2 diabetes.

      The trial recruited around 150 subjects, all within three years of their initial type 2 diabetes diagnosis, and with an average age of 42. The cohort was randomly split between a control group receiving standard care, and an intervention group following an intensive diet and exercise program. The intervention program involved an initial 12-week low-calorie diet known as the Cambridge Weight Plan. Following that initial diet the subjects spent another 12 weeks transitioning to a general healthy diet, albeit still with a degree of caloric control. The intervention group was also urged to complete at least 150 minutes of physical exercise every week, alongside a recommendation of walking at least 10,000 steps each day.

      At 12-months the results revealed subjects in the lifestyle intervention group lost an average of 12 kgs compared to an average of 4 kgs in the standard-care group. An incredible 61 percent of the intervention group was no longer considered diabetic by the end of the 12-month study, compared with just 12 percent reaching similar stages of remission in the standard-care control group. The study suggests that while diet and exercise interventions are beneficial for all ages of type 2 diabetes, the sooner they are deployed the more effective they will be.

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