Can a vegan or vegetarian diet help people treat their diabetes, or at least have a positive effect on them? Why?

  • 6
    Do you mean "cure" or "have positive effect", these are different? Also, what cause of diabetes?
    – rumtscho
    May 7, 2015 at 11:33

2 Answers 2


There are several investigations assessing this issue. In several clinical trials (1, 2) Dr. Barnard has prooved that a low-fat vegan diet can improve serum values of HbA1c and requirements for medication of patients affected by type 2 diabetes. The same studies found significant improvements in plasma lipids (LDL and total cholesterols), that show decrease of risk factors for cardiovascular disease, often a complication of diabetes and metabolic disorders.

Additionally, clinical trials show that vegan and vegetarian diets promote weight loss (3, 4, 5) and improved insulin sensitivity(4, 5) being these two important risk factors for type 2 diabetes (6).

The reasons of the effectiveness must be found in the fact -among others- that vegetarians and vegans eat less quantities of total fats, saturated fats and highers amounts of fiber and show lower BMI (7).

  • 1
    Good answer but your assertion in the final paragraph that fats and fiber must explain the differences is unsupported.
    – Carey Gregory
    Jul 20, 2015 at 5:13

Not only has it been proven that a whole food plant-based diet can reverse diabetes type 2 in many cases, but that it can completely reverse diabetes type 2 in two weeks in some people who've been injecting themselves with insulin for 20 years on a daily basis. Studies where this has been achieved can be found at the following link: NutritionFacts

  • Indeed a low-carb diet has a key role in helping to manage diabetes, but you cannot say that "completely reverse diabetes in 2 weeks". There should be taken into consideration the residual pancreatic exhaustion, the results of the C-Peptide test and so on. Jun 17, 2018 at 8:26
  • No, I didn't say a low-carb diet. A whole food plant-based diet entirely reversed diabetes type 2 in just two weeks in over 50% of patients who have been injecting themselves with 20 units of insulin a day for 20 years. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/495550
    – pizi
    Jun 22, 2018 at 7:55
  • "Fasting and 3-hr postprandial plasma glucose values were lower in most patients on the HCF diets than on the control diets despite lower insulin doses." Come on, how could the BG be higher when you're fasting? Apart from that, a solid medical research (or a medical advice) should be done assessing the complete diabetic condition pre and post-therapy with current methodologies, not with the ones of 40 years ago. Jun 22, 2018 at 8:27
  • "Fasting and 3-hr postprandial plasma glucose values were lower in most patients on the HCF diets than on the control diets despite lower insulin doses." - This means that patients who ate a whole food plant-based diet had plasma glucose values that were lower than patients on a control diet (typical omnivore diet).
    – pizi
    Jun 23, 2018 at 8:52

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