To Your Health
November, 2023 (Vol. 17, Issue 11)
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Eating for Diabetes

By Editorial Staff

Type 2 diabetes is out of control in the U.S., affecting more than 30 million U.S. adults. The leading causes: poor dietary and exercise habits leading to obesity and unmanageable blood sugar levels.

While the statistics are bad news, the good news is that the causes of type 2 diabetes also provide a clear roadmap for the solution in the majority of instances.

Case in point: Dietary changes are associated with improvements in type 2 diabetes – and prevention of it in the first place. But what type of diet is better? A new study compared calorie restriction vs. time-restricted eating to see which was more effective at reducing weight and lowering HbA1C levels (a blood marker of type 2 diabetes that assesses blood sugar levels over time).

Researchers randomized 75 adult type 2 diabetics to one of the two dietary interventions for six months. Time-restricted eating consisted of eating without calorie counting from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. only; calorie restriction consisted of a 25% restriction in total daily calorie intake.

While time-restricted eating proved more effective for weight loss (-3.6% vs. -1.8%) compared with controls, changes in HbA1C were essentially the same between the calorie-restriction and time-restricted eating groups (again, compared with control subjects, who followed their standard diet).

The researchers concluded that both dietary interventions can be effective for type 2 diabetics – good news, particularly because many diabetes sufferers resign themselves to medication first and diet / exercises changes second.