Low-carb diet may be a useful approach for preventing and treating Type 2 diabetes


While low-carb diets are often recommended for those being treated for diabetes, little evidence exists on whether eating fewer carbs can impact the blood sugar of those with diabetes or prediabetes who aren’t treated by medications.

Now, according to new research from Tulane University, a low-carb diet can help those with unmedicated diabetes -; and those at risk for diabetes -; lower their blood sugar.

The study, published in the journal JAMA Network Open, compared two groups: one assigned to a low-carb diet and another that continued with their usual diet. After six months, the low-carb diet group had greater drops in hemoglobin A1c, a marker for blood sugar levels, when compared with the group who ate their usual diet. The low-carbohydrate diet group also lost weight and had lower fasting glucose levels.

The key message is that a low-carbohydrate diet, if maintained, might be a useful approach for preventing and treating Type 2 diabetes, though more research is needed.”


Kirsten Dorans, Lead Author, Assistant Professor of Epidemiology, Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine

Approximately 37 million Americans have diabetes, a condition that occurs when the body doesn’t use insulin properly and can’t regulate blood sugar levels.Type 2 diabetes comprises more than 90% of those cases, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Type 2 diabetes can severely impact quality of life with symptoms such as blurred vision, numb hands and feet, and overall tiredness and can cause other serious health problems like heart disease, vision loss and kidney disease.

The study’s findings are especially important for those with prediabetes whose A1c levels are higher than normal but below levels that would be classified as diabetes. Approximately 96 million Americans have prediabetes and more than 80% of those with prediabetes are unaware, according to the CDC. Those with prediabetes are at increased risk for Type 2 diabetes, heart attacks or strokes and are usually not taking medications to lower blood sugar levels, making a healthy diet more crucial.

The study involved participants whose blood sugar…



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