A record 135 people per week in the UK are losing limbs due to diabetes, according to the Guardian newspaper. If you ever doubted the serious nature of diabetes then all you have to do is read this article.
What is even more scary is the fact that statistically, most of these people will die within five years of their amputation. The sad fact of course is that for most of these individuals with Type 2 Diabetes (T2D), their diabetes is/was completely preventable, even reversible, if only they knew it.
Peripheral Artery Disease & Diabetes
Peripheral artery disease (PAD), also known as peripheral vascular disease (PVD), is a narrowing of the arteries other than those that supply the heart or the brain. Diabetics are at between two and four times increased risk of PAD through endothelial and smooth muscle cell dysfunction in peripheral arteries. The risk of developing lower extremity peripheral arterial disease is proportional to the severity and duration of diabetes. If left untreated, it will inevitably lead to amputation.
Is T2D preventable/reversible?
Almost certainly yes, in both cases by carbohydrate restriction. If you don’t believe me then just watch this interview with Dr Jay Wortman, himself an ex-T2D sufferer. I have met/know of several T2D sufferers and the level of ignorance regarding the disease they have is staggering. They believe it’s a life sentence similar to T1D, something you are just unlucky to have due to some sort of genetic lottery system. Of course, we are all different and some of us will be more susceptible to T2D than others but in all the cases that I have come across, the thought of perhaps doing something about their disease through a change in lifestyle is not even considered. The prevailing attitude very much is “just keep taking the pills & insulin and carry on”.
I think doctors have a great responsibility here to inform their patients, not just about the treatment of T2D but also about the possibility of reversing/preventing it in the first place through a “radical” change in diet. However, since most doctors are also completely ignorant about diet, in particular LCHF, I don’t expect this to change anytime soon. Even the article itself merely reflects common practice for diabetic sufferers i.e. just make sure you regularly get your lower limbs checked out, as if this will somehow help you out in the long run. The simple suggestion of perhaps changing your lifestyle/eating habits is completely off the agenda!
Even Hippocrates knew that “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.”