Type 2 Remission

Some people with type 2 diabetes are able to return their blood sugar levels to a non-diabetes range without needing to take any diabetes medication. You might have heard this called 'reversing' type diabetes. Here we share their stories, as they recall the life-changing moment their diabetes was put into remission.

Man smiling at camera

Tim Hill

The journey to remission

Following the diagnosis, I felt like I was left to my own devices to make lifestyle changes. This can be difficult if you don’t understand the condition or what you need to do to manage it. A lack of support can also mean you end up ignoring the situation or going into a state of denial. There’s so much stigma attached to type 2 diabetes, so I know people often feel too embarrassed to get the help they need.  

Then one morning, I was listening to BBC Radio Somerset and there was a feature on the breakfast show about the NHS Type 2 Diabetes Path to Remission Programme. If it wasn’t for this story, I’d never have been able to turn things around for myself. 

After being accepted onto the programme, I set myself three objectives: to lose weight, to lower my blood pressure and to put my type 2 diabetes into remission.

I’m not going to lie, it’s been really hard as you take on a 12-month programme which involves having only specially-formulated soups and shakes for three months, then with the support of a healthcare team you phase healthy normal food back into your diet. Setting myself goals has kept me motivated and knowing I’m doing it for the good of my health has also kept me on track.   

Read Tim Hill's complete story
Snita Sharma


Going into remission

I found out about the Diabetes UK-funded DiRECT trial, which was in its early stages at the time.

DiRECT looks at using low-calorie diets for weight loss to help put diabetes into remission. I wasn’t in the right geographical area to take part in the study, but with the help of a book telling me how to follow an 800-calorie diet, I managed to start losing weight.

After a couple of weeks, I got the most amazing release of energy. I started running faster, and my swimming and cycling improved, too. Mentally, I had never felt so good. My GP supported me to reduce my medication as I started to lose weight, and a blood test shortly before my birthday confirmed that my diabetes was in remission.

Read Snita's complete story
peter jackson


Benefits of remission

Losing all that weight and being in remission felt great, both physically and mentally, and I can only describe my initial feelings as a positive regret that I didn’t address my weight years ago. We had moved from England back to Northern Ireland and my excuse was bringing up the kids and not having the best lifestyle in terms of work.   
When I lost that initial stone that was a huge lightbulb moment, as well as the feeling of not being breathless when walking. The target I wanted to achieve after three months on the programme was 15% weight loss. Both myself and a couple of other people had reached our 15% weight loss with about three weeks to go, but were encouraged to keep going until the end of the 12 weeks.

I think being part of the programme and in a team environment was really motivating. There were so many different characters, which worked really well for me. 
My target weight had been 15 stone 3, however I went down to 14 stone 5. It was visibly a lot of weight to lose and living in a small village I noticed people looking at me and thinking I might be seriously ill, so I would have to tell people not to worry and that I was on a managed NHS programme and feeling great. 

Read Peter's complete story


Remission of type 2 diabetes

Remission happened towards the end of 2017 into early 2018. I lost over 50 kilos in weight and was able to stop taking all of my diabetes medication. The truth is, if you want to improve your health, no-one is going to do it for you. You have to put your shoes on, get out there, and do whatever you can. For me, I realised that real and permanent change was absolutely necessary.   
Getting to that remission state filled me with a level of power and an immense amount of pride, as it wasn’t something that I was able to share with my granddad, and so in a sense I  continue down that path knowing how proud he would have been of me, given that he struggled with diabetes in his later life.   
Remission gave me self-awareness, and vigilance kicked in and you come to realise that you are in control no matter how hard it is. It’s that age old saying that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. I took that first step into understanding myself and understanding what the main elements of the problem were for me, and just tried to make those changes, slowly but surely over time.  

Read Jez's complete story
Man seen from the back is walking along a sandy beach. The sky is blue.



Having the right mindset is important. I’m ex-military, so you get used to working on your own or as a team – you can just get on and do it. I feel a lot better for all the changes I have made with my diet and losing the weight. I’m now at about 14 stone 12. I’ve still got around 30lbs to lose to get my weight to where it should be for my height, which is 5ft 9. My BMI is now 31.2 and it was 37.6 when I started, so it’s a work in progress.  
At home I have my two Border Collie dogs, called Max and Bonny, so that’s a good incentive to go out for a walk with them. I also do all my shopping online, which makes it much easier for me to keep to my regime and make progress. 
My motivation to stay in remission is that I don’t want to be taking any diabetes medication.  However, I have found navigating around the information on food has not been easy and it can be so difficult getting to grips with the labelling on food products, which is extremely confusing. However, my experience has shown that it may be possible for some people to put their type 2 diabetes into remission, you just need to make the necessary changes and have a strong mindset.

Read Michael 's complete story
Back to Top
Brand Icons/Telephonecheck - FontAwesomeicons/tickicons/uk