The Paleo diet and diabetes

Sofianos Andrikopoulos
Med J Aust 2016; 205 (4): 151-152. || doi: 10.5694/mja16.00347

Studies are inconclusive about the benefits of the Paleo diet in patients with type 2 diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is characterised by fasting hyperglycaemia as a result of insulin resistance and defects in insulin secretion. Obesity is the major risk factor for the development of the condition and a number of studies — including the Diabetes Prevention Program, the Da Qing IGT and Diabetes Study, and the Finnish Diabetes Prevention Study — have shown that lifestyle modification (diet and exercise) can significantly prevent the progression of glucose intolerance (prediabetes) to diabetes by up to 58%.1-3 In addition, a recent study showed that a very-low-calorie diet for 8 weeks resulted in remission of type 2 diabetes for at least 6 months in 40% of the participants.4 As such, clinical guidelines prescribe lifestyle modification as first-line treatment for type 2 diabetes and indeed throughout the management of the disease process.5 Therefore, it is clear that dietary intervention is a critical component of the glucose-lowering strategy in diabetes.

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  • Sofianos Andrikopoulos

  • University of Melbourne, Melbourne, VIC


Competing interests:

No relevant disclosures.

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