"'It's the best therapy for diabetes that we have today, and it's very low risk,' said the study's lead author, Dr. John Dixon of Monash University Medical School in Melbourne, Australia."
Sounds fantastic! Is Dr. Dixon speaking of restricting carbohydrates in the diet, so as to not flood the bloodstream with the glucose that a diabetic person's metabolism is ill-equipped to handle? So that person doesn't need to rely on insulin injections to normalize blood sugar, with side effects like obesity from the insulin moving the excess into fat cell storage?
According to the lead author of a study published in JAMA Vol. 299 No. 3, January 23, 2008, as quoted in an AP release, the "best therapy for diabetes that we have today" is not cutting sugar and starch from the diet. It's bariatric surgery. Cutting down the size of the tummy. That's correct. There are doctors who believe that surgery -- gastric bypass, lap band surgery and the like -- with its risk of complication and morbidity, is a low-risk endeavor. Where's the risk in cutting sugar, wheat, potatoes, rice and other starches from the diet first? The foods that were absent from the diets of some of the healthiest groups of humans known to history, even into the twentieth century? (And perhaps also today, if groups like the Masai are still living their traditional lifestyle.)
Ironically, these are among the foodstuffs that are prohibited during the recovery period after these surgeries. In the AP/Yahoo article, Dr. David Cummings of the University of Washington in Seattle says that patients' diabetes often goes into remission shortly after the surgery, sometimes within only days. I wonder what would be the results in a control group of patients who adopted the post-surgery recovery diet, but who didn't actually have the surgery?
That is, is the miraculous remission from diabetes from the surgery? Or from the elimination of glucose from the bloodstream?
In the article, the assumption among the doctors seems to be that the positive effects in the diabetic condition result from the weight lost. Impossible. No significant amount of weight can be lost within several days. So what's the diabetes miracle? The fact that weight will be lost, now that the stomach is smaller? That would be a farfetched hypothesis.
A simpler one would be: something in the post-operative period itself relieves diabetes. The objective scientific mind would inquire as to what that is.
The quote that opens this post is appeared on Yahoo! News, dated Jan 24, 2008, here:
Obesity surgery seen as diabetes cure
Many more articles on this topic can be found through an Internet search for a set of terms like "diabetes obesity surgery JAMA."
Gastrointestinal Surgery as a Treatment for Diabetes
David E. Cummings and David R. Flum
Here's a link to JAMA's extract of the full article:
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