Paleo vs. Type 1 Diabetes
Wednesday, September 17th, 2008
I received the following email today, pretty cool stuff:
I emailed you about a month or so ago. I just want to give you an update on my situation: I’ve lost about 15-20lbs. I’ve taken no insulin for 5 weeks and I’m type 1 Diabetic!. Because of my strict paleo diet(gluten and dairy free) my a1c is not going to be much higher than when I was taking crap load of insulin. My glucose has really stabilized in the low 100s (100-125) and I haven’t had a low at all during this time nor have I had extreme highs like when I was taking so much insulin. My blood pressure has dropped tremendously and my Internist thinks that my pancreas has jumped started again, because even when I have had a cheat meal my blood is responding in a completely different manner. We are going to do a c-peptide test again. I’ve also started to incorporate better sleeping patterns (trying to get 9-10 hours) and my fasting glucose is even better (lower) than before.
All that to say, I really appreciate your help and your blog. It’s been incredibly resourceful and much more helpful than even my endocrinologist. Best of luck in the future! I’ll try to keep you posted when the end results come.
It is well understood that Type 1 Diabetes is a failure of the beta cells of the pancreas to produce insulin. This is generally acknowledged to be the result of an autoimmune response, usually attributed to a viral infection or some kind of trauma. What is less known is the role of grain lectins in this process. Many people benefit not only from reducing the recommended American Diabetes Association 60% carb diet (higher even than the diet that causes most of the type 2 diabetes we see) because of a more fat fueled metabolism but also, occasionally, we see a return of normal pancreatic function with the removal of the neo-lithic foods. The inflammation and immune response that has been beating down the beta cells cease, some repair occurs and things come back to normal. This is not the norm unfortunately, but it does happen. Even without the full return of pancreatic function, the reduced carb, higher fat paleo diet greatly mitigates the accelerated aging and systemic inflammation inherent in both type 1 and type 2 diabetes.
That this is not the standard of care baffles me. As much as I hate spurious litigation the AMA should face a class action suit for it’s role in obscuring the facts in this situation.
This example is also why I’m a hard-ass on the whole paleo thing. For many people the Zone simply does not cut it. Precise ratios are fantastic but potentially worthless if the food being consumed is in some way toxic to the individual.