Is a Low Carb, Healthy Fat Diet effective in reversing/managing Diabetes?
There are many advantages to a Low Carb, Healthy Fat nutritional approach. As advocated by Low Carb Down Under (LCDU), this type of diet can be used to manage Type-1 or Type-2 diabetes –
“We believe this is far and above the best way to manage diabetes […] If you have Type-1 or Type-2 Diabetes it is important to understand that decreasing your consumption of carbohydrates that raise your blood sugar will decrease your need for insulin and other medication […].”
Low Carb Down Under defines a Low Carb, Healthy Fat diet as “less than 30% of your daily calories coming from carbohydrates”. This is achieved by eating “real, whole foods v”.
You can find out more about Low Carb Down Under and the Low Carb, Healthy Fat diet on our “Low Carb Down Under Conference” blog post.
Key terms to understand when considering switching to a Low Carb, Healthy Fat diet to manage Type 2 diabetes include:
- The difference between ‘reversed’ and ‘cured’
- Nutritional ketosis
- Ketones and Ketogenesis
The difference between ‘reversed’ and ‘cured’
It is important to understand the difference between ‘reversed’ and ‘cured’ when speaking about Type-2 diabetes. Diabetes cannot be cured because if a patient stops following their treatment plan, the disease will return in the long-term. However, Type-2 diabetes can be ‘reversed’ or ‘managed’ by implementing a strictly-followed Low Carb, Healthy Fat diet.
A key term in understanding how the Low Carb, Healthy Fat diet works is ‘nutritional ketosis’, and has to do with how the human body creates energy. According to LCDU, when eating a Low Carb, Healthy Fat diet, your body will use proteins and fats for most of your energy requirements, instead of carbohydrates.
“Ketosis occurs on a Low Carb, Healthy Fat diet when ketones are produced more quickly than the body needs and their levels increase in the blood. As the glycogen stores become depleted the body begins to burn body fat and this increases the availability of fatty acids as a fuel source. Many of these fatty acids cannot pass the blood brain barrier so the brain switches to using ketone bodies produced by the liver as fuel.
This normal and extremely efficient physiological response to carbohydrate restriction is generally termed nutritional ketosis.”
Understanding ketones and ketogenesis
The science behind why a Low Carb, Healthy Fat diet works to manage diabetes can be tricky to understand.
As explained by Virta Health, ketones refer to “the primary circulating fatty acid metabolites beta-hydroxybutyrate […] and acetoacetate […]. Hepatic (liver) production of these 4-carbon molecules increases when insulin levels are low and glucagon is high enough to result in accelerated lipolysis […]. Ketones are synthesized from the controlled cleavage of fatty acids in the liver, a process called ‘ketogenesis.’.”
As you can see, the science behind a Low-Carb, High-Fat diet can get quite technical and complicated! You can learn more about ketones and ketogenesis on the Virta Health blog.
Park Medical Group can help you manage your type-2 Diabetes through a Low-Carb, Healthy Fat Diet
If you suffer from Type-2 Diabetes, talk to Dr Sanjeev at Park Medical Group today. Under the guidance of Dr Jason Fung, Dr Sanjeev can talk to you about going off your insulin injections by eating the right way, without the use of medications, supplements or surgery.