Type 2 diabetes may seem reversible to people whose blood sugar levels have returned to normal, but they still need to practice healthy lifestyles and diet to keep the effects of diabetes under control.
Type 2 diabetes occurs when the body, pancreas and cells, working together, are unable to manage glucose, or blood sugar, properly. The blood sugar levels can fluctuate, being too high or low. Type 1 diabetes means the body cannot produce insulin at all or produces too little of it. People with type 1 diabetes need to take insulin for the rest of their lives.
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Medication along with a meal plan and exercise program under a doctor’s supervision help many people with type 2 diabetes return to normal blood sugar levels. However, they have a genetic predisposition that causes diabetes and need to continue with a healthy lifestyle even if they no longer need medication.
“It’s always something that is with you, but it can go into remission,” Dr. Ronald Tamler, clinical director of the Mount Sinai Diabetes Center in New York City, told Everyday Health
When blood sugar levels return to normal, some people who had been diagnosed with diabetes might think of themselves as “diabetes free.” They must continue with the healthy eating patterns and physical activity regimen that restored those normal levels, Tamler said.
“It can’t be a diet of just two or three months,” he said.
A diet might include smaller portions of food, healthier foods, and no sugary drinks, usually done with the help of a doctor or dietitian. It’s a lifelong commitment to being free from the effects of a predisposed disease.
Genetics trigger an increased risk in getting diabetes while a healthy living plan keeps the disorder under control no matter what age a person is diagnosed with diabetes.
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Research has shown about 10 percent of diabetics were able to get off their medication after following an exercise program and diet that limited them to 1,200 to 1,800 calories a day, according to WebMD
. Their conditions were classified as prediabetes. About 15 percent to 20 percent of people who lost the most pounds or started the program with less severe or recently diagnosed diabetes were able to stop taking medication.
Reversible means diabetics no longer need medication but need to maintain a healthy weight and lifestyle program to stay off medication, Dr. Ann Albright, director of diabetes translation at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said, according to WebMD.
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