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Can type 2 diabetes be reversed?

Many companies claim to reverse type 2 diabetes (DM2). When they say this, they mean that their patients can maintain a healthy blood sugar level without medication. In some individuals, this is possible through significant lifestyle changes, particularly diet changes. However, it’s misleading to call that “diabetes reversal” for two reasons. 

  • First, people with diabetes who attained a healthy blood sugar level through changes in diet and activity must maintain those lifestyle changes to maintain their blood sugar levels.
  • Second, even when individuals maintain those changes, this “reversal” is not always permanent. Stressors such as illness, weight gain, and loss of cells that make insulin can lead to higher blood sugars over time. So, it’s important that patients diagnosed with diabetes continue to carefully monitor blood sugar going forward. 
Symptoms of Type Two Diabetes
Symptoms of Type Two Diabetes CGM

What is type 2 diabetes remission?

When people say “diabetes reversal”, what they really mean is “diabetes remission”. The American Diabetes Association has defined diabetes remission as:

  • Hemoglobin A1c of less than 6.5%* for at least 3 months with no diabetes medications or
  • Continuous glucose monitor data showing blood sugar in a non-diabetic range with no diabetes medications

*Hemoglobin A1c is a measure of average blood sugar for the previous 2-3 months.

Is type 2 diabetes remission possible for everyone?

Type 2 diabetes remission is possible for many, but not all, individuals.  A recent diagnosis of diabetes, lack of family history of diabetes, and weight loss all make it more likely that remission is possible.  When remission is possible, to maintain lower blood sugars, significant lifestyle changes need to continue.

However, some people find their type 2 diabetes has progressed to the point that, despite their best-efforts including weight loss, they still need medication to maintain blood sugar within a goal. Even if your type 2 diabetes cannot go into remission, you may be able reduce medications over time with the right changes in diet, activity, and sleep.

At Ryse Health, we support patients in their goals for managing type 2 diabetes, including patients with the goal of remission. We have continued discussions with them on their journey to achieve optimal blood sugar control. We also support patients whose goal is to maintain healthy blood sugar levels with the use of medications. If you’re interested in learning how Ryse Health can help you manage your blood sugar, give us a call or request an initial appointment.

Call: (571) 999-7973Schedule An Appointment

Symptoms of Type Two Diabetes Women Jogging