A low-carbohydrate diet can help reduce type 2 diabetes risk by nearly 90 percent, a new study has found.

The study enrolled over 2,500 pre-diabetes people who went on a low-carb diet instead of their usual low-fat, high-carb dietary routine for eight weeks. The low-carb diet consisted of only 800 calories daily.

The low-carb diet consisted of milkshakes and soups. The participants were also asked to exercise regularly during the study period.

After eight weeks, the participants who stuck with the low-carb diet and regular exercise lost 23 pounds on average, which is about 10 percent of their body weight.

Findings suggested that a strict diet coupled with regular exercise can be the key to lowering the risk of type 2 diabetes among pre-diabetes people.

In a randomized experiment, the researchers analyzed if other factors affect the participants' risk of developing type 2 diabetes. These lifestyle factors included low- and high-protein diets, regularity of exercise routines as well as other diet plans that have low or high glycemic index.

"Since my initial weight loss, I have maintained my weight of around 65 kilos for two years with a healthy diet and regular exercise," said one of the PREVIEW program's participants. The PREVIEW program participants involved pre-diabetes seniors, adults, adolescents and children.

Led by University of Copenhagen's Professor Anne Raben, the major findings of the PREVIEW program will be presented during the European Obesity Summit in Sweden. The event will kick off on June 1.

Diabetes Among Children

In a separate report, researchers found that 75 percent of older diabetic children are not getting the medical check-ups they need to keep the disease under control.

A report from the National Paediatric Diabetes Audit (NPDA) found that only 25.4 percent of 12-year-olds in Wales and England are getting the seven recommended health checkups.

These medical maintenance checks include foot and eye examinations as well as measurements of growth, cholesterol and blood pressure levels and kidney functions.

"Regardless of postcode, children should receive the same high level of diabetes care. So whilst completion rates for individual care processes such as HbA1c (average blood glucose level) have improved, it is completely unacceptable that the same high standard isn't reached with the six other care processes that need to be recorded," said NPDA Clinical Lead Dr. Justin Warner.

Photo: Tony Alter | Flickr

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