Researchers from George Washington University, the University of Toronto and the University of North Carolina have discovered that a low-fat vegan diet can be an effective way to lower blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes. In fact, study participants who ate a low-fat vegan diet, cutting out all meat and dairy and added fats and oils, lowered their blood sugar more and lost more weight than people on a standard American Diabetes Association diet.
According to the journal Diabetes Care, patients following the vegan diet lowered their cholesterol more and ended up with better kidney function.
Researchers tested 99 people with type 2 diabetes, assigning them randomly to either a low-fat, low-sugar vegan diet or the standard American Diabetes Association diet.
After 22 weeks on the diet, 43 percent of those on the vegan diet and 26 percent of those on the standard diet were either able to stop taking some of their drugs such as insulin or glucose-control medications, or lowered the doses. The vegan dieters lost 14 pounds (6.5 kg) on average while the diabetes association dieters lost 6.8 pounds (3.1 kg).
An important level of glucose control called a1c fell by 1.23 points in the vegan group and by 0.38 in the group on the standard diet.
The vegan diet removed all animal products, including meat, fish and dairy. It was also low in added fat and in sugar.
According to the Canadian Diabetes Association over 2 million Canadians currently have diabetes, over 90 percent of those people have type 2 diabetes.
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