The European Association for the Study of Diabetes annual conference is currently underway in Lisbon, with around 15,000 healthcare professionals and scientists attending. One topic high on the agenda, and one you may have seen reported in the news this week, is Type 2 diabetes remission.
Professor Roy Taylor from Newcastle University summarised his research to develop a weight management programme – including a low-calorie diet – which can put Type 2 diabetes into remission.
Part of this work includes the 2011 Diabetes UK-funded Counterpoint study, which suggested the feasibility of an approach like this in 11 people living with Type 2 diabetes. To take this work further, and understand more, our DiRECT trial is testing the approach in over 300 people for the long term, with the programme being delivered in GP practices within the NHS.
The first-year results of DiRECT are expected to be announced later this year, providing the vital evidence we need to understand the effectiveness and biology behind the low-calorie diet.
Alongside this, Glasgow scientists, including DiRECT co-lead Professor Mike Lean, are calling for more clarity around Type 2 diabetes remission in the British Medical Journal. They believe that greater awareness of remission, alongside better documentation and surveillance by healthcare professionals is needed.
Dr Elizabeth Robertson, Director of Research at Diabetes UK, said:
“The ability to put Type 2 diabetes into remission could be transformative for millions of people around the world, and evidence is building to suggest that it’s possible. In the meantime, we need to ensure that those who do achieve remission are recognised in the right way and receive the right care.
“Diabetes UK is funding crucial research to find out how to put Type 2 diabetes into remission, who might benefit and whether it’s effective for the long term.”
Diabetes UK has committed over £2.5 million to the DiRECT trial. Our
DiRECT study has more information about low calorie diets and Type 2 diabetes remission.