Is Your Pancreas Fat?

Flashy blog title aside (sorry, couldn’t resist) a small study looked at the impact of weight loss for those with type 2 diabetes.  But they did one better – instead of being happy with a boilerplate “weight loss is good” conclusion to their study, they looked at the mechanisms that truly affect type 2 diabetes. 

When the people in the study lost enough weight to lose the excess fat in their pancreas, it reversed their type 2 diabetes.  The study comes to the conclusion that when the pancreas is overwhelmed with fat, it hinders its ability play its role in producing the correct amounts of insulin.  Without that, our bodies spiral into type 2 diabetes – a way to cope with the ill-functioning pancreas.

This is great news to better help us understand the hows of diabetes, and reaffirm the important of a healthy life style choices.

A very low-calorie diet of 600 calories a day may be able to reverse type 2 diabetes, preliminary research suggests.

Sound too tough to follow? Don’t worry, the researchers aren’t recommending the low-cal diet as a treatment for diabetes.

“We used the 600-calorie diet to test a hypothesis. What I can tell you definitively is that if people lose substantial weight by normal means, they will lose their diabetes,” says study head Roy Taylor,MD, director of the Newcastle Magnetic Resonance Centre at Newcastle University in England.

MRI scans showed that the fat levels in the pancreas fell from around 8% — considered high — to a normal 6%.

After eight weeks on the diet, their bodies were once again making sufficient insulin, essentially reversing their diabetes, Taylor says.

“Fat in the pancreas inhibits the action of beta cells in making insulin. The low-calorie diet got rid of this excess fat,” he says. Via http://diabetes.webmd.com/news/20110624/very-low-calorie-diet-may-reverse-diabetes

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