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NHS launch low calorie diet programme to help more people put their diabetes into remission

NHS launch low calorie diet programme to help more people put their diabetes into remission

From today, 5000 people across England will be able to access this free and life-changing weight-loss programme, thanks to the results from Diabetes UK’s DiRECT study. 

What is the diet? 

Inspired by the results from our ground-breaking Diabetes Remission Clinical Trial (DiRECT) study, the year-long programme aims to help people recently diagnosed with diabetes lose weight and put their condition into remission.

For three months, people with type 2 diabetes will be provided with low-calorie total diet replacement products, such as shakes and soups. After this, they’ll be supported to reintroduce solid foods and maintain their weight loss.
Alongside making changes to their diet, people taking part in the programme will also be provided with support to increase their exercise levels. And they’ll be able to take part in virtual one to ones and group sessions throughout the year too.

The programme is currently available in the following areas:

  • South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw 
  • Humber Coast and Vale 
  • Greater Manchester 
  • Frimley  
  • Gloucestershire 
  • Derbyshire 
  • Birmingham and Solihull 
  • Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes 
  • North East London 
  • North Central London 

If you are interested in taking part, please speak to your GP. We’ve also got more information about remission, or you can call our helpline for more guidance and advice. 

Our remission journey 

This is a fantastic moment and a culmination of years of hard work from our researchers and supporters. Our far-sighted research funding back in 2008 gave us the first ever evidence that a low-calorie diet approach could help some people to stop taking their diabetes medication and put their condition into remission. We’ve carried on backing this area of research ever since, awarding our largest ever research grant to DiRECT.

Remission can be truly life-changing, and so we’re delighted that thanks to our research more people are now able to access the support they need to lose weight effectively and have the chance to put their type 2 diabetes into remission. 

Bridget Turner, our Director of Policy Campaigns and Improvement, said:

"This is an important first step to ensure that people with type 2 diabetes, can access a remission programme within the NHS and benefit from the ground-breaking findings of the Diabetes UK funded DiRECT research.

We know that some people with type 2 diabetes want and need support from health care professionals to lose weight effectively and now as these programmes are piloted across the NHS - they will.

People with type 2 diabetes who have put their diabetes into remission frequently tell us how it has changed their lives. We are so pleased to see that others will now have the same opportunity and hope that it won’t be too long before more remission programmes are rolled out across the country.”

DiRECT isn’t over yet. We’re continuing to fund the trial to follow participants for a total of seven years to fully understand how to help people maintain their weight loss and stay in remission. 

We’re also funding the ReTUNE trial, to see if a similar approach to remission could work in people who are already a healthy weight. 

Thanks to your support, we have been able to help scientists continue to build our knowledge of type 2 diabetes remission. Donate today to help make remission a reality for as many people as possible.

Donate now

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