Researchers Discover Diet that May Revolutionise Treatment of Type-2 Diabetes
The current traditional diet prescribed to diabetics involves eating half a dozen small meals spread throughout the day. Now, a new study has identified an eating protocol that may revolutionise the treatment of type-2 diabetes for many people. Researchers have found that eating three specific types of meals daily may balance blood sugar and help keep it under control. 
 
The study was conducted by scientists from Tel Aviv University (TAU) (Israel) and published in the journal Diabetes Care. It reports that a starch-rich breakfast consumed early in the morning, coupled with a small dinner, could replace insulin injections and other diabetes medications for many diabetics. 
 
Prof Daniela Jakubowicz, of TAU’s Sackler faculty of medicine and Wolfson Medical Center’s diabetes unit, explained, “Our research proposes shifting the starch-rich calories to the early hours of the day. This produces a glucose balance and improved glycemic control among type 2 diabetics. We believe that through this regimen it will be possible for diabetics to significantly reduce or even stop the injections of insulin, and most of anti-diabetic medications, to achieve excellent control of glucose levels.”
 
Those suffering from type-2 diabetes are dependent on injections of the hormone insulin which works to regulate blood sugar levels. The drug has been effective in saving lives but can have serious downsides, namely, the triggering of a vicious cycle which results in patients becoming dependent on increasingly higher doses. Weight gain and the development of cardiovascular diseases are also common in such patients. 
 
The research has found that our metabolism and biological clock are optimised for eating in the morning and for fasting during evening and night s, when we are supposed to be asleep. “But the usual diet recommended for type 2 diabetes consists of several small meals evenly distributed throughout the day—for example, three meals and three snacks daily, including a snack before going to sleep to prevent a drop in sugar levels during the night,” added Prof Jakubowicz. 
 
This type of diet is commonly known as the ‘6M-diet’ and researchers of this study have found that it is not effective for sugar control, requiring diabetic patients to undergo additional medication and insulin treatment. Here the vicious cycle starts, as insulin injections lead to weight gain which further increases blood sugar levels. 
 
For the study, researchers gathered data from 29 type-2 diabetic participants after having them undergo a new ‘3M-diet’ which is more aligned to our biological clock. The data from these participants was compared to a control group who were subjected to the traditional 6M-diet. The experimental 3M-diet comprises a meal of bread, fruits and sweets in the early hours of the morning; a substantial lunch; and a small dinner specifically lacking starches, sweets and fruits. 
 
Analysis of the data showed that the control group on the traditional 6M-diet did not lose weight and did not experience any improvement of sugar levels, thus, requiring an increase in medication and insulin doses. Conversely, the group on the 3M-diet not only lost weight but also experienced substantially improved sugar levels. 
 
Commenting on the results, Prof Jakubowicz said, “Their need for diabetic medication, especially for insulin doses, dipped substantially. Some were even able to stop using insulin altogether. In addition, the 3M-diet improved the expression of biological clock genes. This suggests that the 3M-diet is not only more effective in controlling diabetes. It may also prevent many other complications such as cardiovascular disease, aging and cancer, which are all regulated by the biological clock genes.”
 
At this stage, the researchers believe that the up-regulation of the biological clock gene in the 3M-diet might be the mechanism behind its success, as it enhances insulin secretion and improves sugar delivery into the muscles, creating a balanced daytime and nocturnal glucose metabolism. To further substantiate their claims, researchers are now investigating the role certain proteins may play in breakfast food consumed by diabetic patients. 
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    COMMENTS

    SANDESH PAWAR

    1 month ago

    Well my dad had type 2 Diabetes. I am a fitness enthusiast myself. Read couple of books that gave different opinion on how to get rid of Type 2 Diabetes. the conclusion was simple , just loose weight. We tend to do too many things like building strength by going to the Gym, eating more nutritious etc. There is only one word to achieve anything , "sustainability".
    He needed to do two things to loose weight. I.e. eat less and be more active.
    So i asked him to
    1. Skip breakfast (intermittent fasting for 18 Hrs (I had consulted doctors and they were fine with it.) & i myself follow it.
    2. He liked walking, so i asked him to climb up a hill besides our house at our hometown. just to make it more intense in same amount of time.

    He gradually lost weight & his sugar started to drop . he enjoyed the feeling of being light so much that he's started taking other physical activities and gave up Sugar completely.
    He is Diabetic free for past 2 years. We get his sugar level checked up every three months.
    He enjoys occasional Alcoholic drinks, eats almost everything, just makes sure he compensate it the next few days by either being more active or eating less. :)

    REPLY

    AMIT KUMAR

    In Reply to SANDESH PAWAR 1 month ago

    Three cheers. I too practice intermittent fasting and have observed positive changes. For example, my blood pressure reduced from 120/80 to 110/75. More importantly I feel better and have to prepare one less meal.

    Ks Narayanarao

    2 months ago

    Great information to diabetic patients.

    Yoga and Pranayama Help Reduce Depression and Anxiety: Study
    Doctors have often prescribed meditation and other stress-reduction techniques as possible treatments for depression and anxiety. Though yoga has become increasingly popular in recent decades, it has received less attention in medical literature until now. A new study has found evidence that yoga and pranayama (breathing exercises) can reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety. 
     
    Researchers from the Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) have published their findings in the Journal of Psychiatric Practice, that yoga can help curb depression and anxiety in both, the short term (with each session) as well as in the long term (over a period of three months). These findings suggest that yoga can be a helpful complementary treatment for clinical depression or major depressive disorder.
     
    For the study, the researchers randomly divided a group of 30 clinically depressed patients into two groups. Both groups engaged in Iyengar yoga and coherent breathing; the only difference was in the number of instructional and home sessions in which each group participated. Over three months, the high-dose group (HDG) spent 123 hours in sessions while the low-dose group (LDG) spent 87 hours.
     
    Results showed that, within a month, both groups’ sleep quality improved significantly. Tranquility, positivity, physical exhaustion and symptoms of anxiety and depression significantly improved in both groups, as measured by several validated clinical scales. 
     
    “Think of it this way, we give medications in different doses in order to enact their effects on the body to varying degrees. Here, we explored the same concept, but used yoga. We call that a dosing study. Past yoga and depression studies have not really delved deeply into this,” explained corresponding author Dr Chris Streeter, associate professor of psychiatry at BUSM. 
     
    “Providing evidence-based data is helpful in getting more individuals to try yoga as a strategy for improving their health and well-being. These data are crucial for accompanying investigations of underlying neurobiology that will help elucidate ‘how’ yoga works,” said study collaborator and co-author Dr Marisa M Silveri, neuroscientist at McLean Hospital and associate professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. 
     
    Depression is treated with a variety of modalities, including counselling (especially through cognitive behavioural therapy) and medication. Other studies and research have shown that combining therapy and medication has greater success than either treatment alone. In the researchers’ opinion, even though the study is of a comparatively small sample of participants, the results still present a good case for prescribing yoga as a form of treatment for depression and anxiety. 
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    Vitamin D Might Help Immune System Fight Melanoma, Finds Study
    Recent research has found that vitamin D intake can reduce the aggressiveness of melanoma cancer cells. This study, conducted by researchers from the University of Leeds, found that vitamin D influenced signalling pathway within melanoma cells that slowed their growth and stopped their spreading to the lungs in mice.
     
    The research has been published in Cancer Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research. Although the research is still in its early stages, the findings could, ultimately, lead to new ways to treat melanoma. 
     
    According to the data published in this study, the survival rate of melanoma-afflicted patients has nearly doubled in the past four decades, even though 16,000 new cases are diagnosed annually. Around 300 patients are diagnosed with melanoma in its most advanced stage each year in England, at which point the disease is particularly aggressive and difficult to treat. At this late stage, only 55% of patients survive for one year or more, whereas nearly all of those diagnosed at the earliest stage survive to this point. 
     
    Previous research has shown that lower levels of vitamin D circulating in the body are linked to worse outcomes for people with melanoma, but researchers have not yet fully understood the mechanisms that cause this. 
     
    For this study, lead author Professor Newton-Bishop from the University of Leeds and her team wanted to understand the processes that were being regulated by vitamin D in melanoma cells. They also wanted to study the outcome of having a lack of a protein on the surface of melanoma cells called a vitamin D receptor (VDR) which assists vitamin D in binding to the cell’s surface. 
     
    Researchers looked at the expression of the VDR-coding gene in 703 human melanoma tumors and in 353 human melanoma tumours that had metastasised or spread from their primary site. Expression of VDR was then cross-referenced with other patient data, like the tumour thickness and speed of growth. On analysis of the data, researchers also wanted to see if the VDR concentrations in human melanoma cells were correlated to the genetic changes occurring as the tumour becomes more aggressive. Researchers used mouse models to assess whether VDR concentrations altered the cancer’s ability to spread. 
     
    The study found that human tumours with low levels of the VDR gene grew faster and a lower activity of genes that control pathways that help the immune system fight cancer cells. Furthermore, tumours with lower VDR levels also had a higher activity of genes linked to cancer growth and spread, especially those controlling the Wnt/β-catenin signalling pathway, which helps to modulate a variety of biological processes within the cell, such as its growth.
     
    While testing in mice, they found that increasing the amount of VDF on the melanoma cells reduced activity of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway and slowed down the growth of the melanoma cells. Cancer was also less likely to spread to their lungs in such cases.  
     
    “After years of research, we finally know how vitamin D works with VDR to influence the behaviour of melanoma cells by reducing activity of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway,” Prof Newton-Bishop said. “This new puzzle piece will help us better understand how melanoma grows and spreads, and hopefully find new targets to control it. But what’s really intriguing, is that we can now see how vitamin D might help the immune system fight cancer.”
     
    “We know when the Wnt/β-catenin pathway is active in melanoma, it can dampen down the immune response causing fewer immune cells to reach the inside of the tumour, where they could potentially fight the caner better,” she continued. “Although vitamin D on its own won’t treat cancer, we could take insights from the way it works to boost the effects of immunotherapy, which uses the immune system to find and attack cancer cells.”  
     
    Martin Ledwick, head information nurse at Cancer Research UK, further explained, “Vitamin D is important for our muscle and bone health and the NHS already recommends getting 10 micrograms per day as part of our diet or as supplements, especially in the winter months. People who have been newly diagnosed with melanoma should have their vitamin D levels checked and managed accordingly. If you are worried about your vitamin D levels, it’s best to speak to your doctor who can help ensure you are not deficient.”
     
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