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'I've found the fastest way to beat Type 2 diabetes': PROFESSOR ROY TAYLOR explains his revolutionary discovery and how it can change YOUR life

One effect of diabetes is premature heart disease (file image). A 59-year-old lady I met in the coronary care unit required major surgery, then long-term drug treatment

  • Professor Roy Taylor recommends three-stage diet to reverse effects of Type 2  Diabetes 
  • He wrote Life Without Diabetes, based on these decades of scientific discovery 
  • Hairy Bikers Dave Myers lost nearly four stone following the professor's plan 
  • There are 3.8 million living with Type 2 diagnosis and thousands pre-diabetic 
Professor Roy Taylor, who is based at Newcastle Magnetic Resonance Centre,

No doubt you’re full of resolutions for what you want to achieve in the first few months of this new decade. Maybe you’ve decided to join the gym or master a new language. A lot can be achieved in a few short weeks, after all.

So what if I told you that by March – just eight weeks from now — you, or someone you love, could make a truly revolutionary change. For that is how long, I’ve conclusively discovered, it takes for someone to be rid of type 2 diabetes, reversing it potentially for ever.

The stakes couldn’t be higher. As I’ve witnessed during the course of my medical career, this is the epidemic of our times; a health crisis that puts an intolerable strain on the NHS, accounting for a massive 10 per cent of the entire health service budget, at the cost of more than £10 billion a year to the taxpayer.

According to the latest figures, 3.8 million are living with a type 2 diabetes diagnosis and thousands more are pre-diabetic.

And, make no mistake, this is a truly gruesome illness, as I’ve seen first-hand many times since becoming a doctor in the Seventies.

Excruciating pain in your legs and feet are all agonising consequences of Type 2 Diabetes. A diagnosis of the debilitating disease doubles the risk of having a stroke and considerably ups your risk of heart attack (file image)

Even if you try to muddle along at first, being more careful about what you eat and taking your pills diligently, type 2 diabetes is usually progressive — which means that it is only likely to worsen.

Amputations, blindness, nerve damage and excruciating pain in your legs and feet are all agonising consequences of this debilitating disease. With every passing year you are very likely to need more drugs to control worsening blood sugar swings, as well as enduring more pain. You may have to retire early and your life expectancy will certainly be shortened.

Whatever your age, a diabetes diagnosis doubles your risk of having a stroke and considerably ups your risk of heart attack.

I’m sorry if this all seems rather blunt, but you don’t want a doctor who hides the truth.

Type 2 diabetes is characterised by too much sugar in the blood when the body is unable to produce enough of the hormone, insulin, which should control blood sugar levels (file image)

Type 2 diabetes is characterised by too much sugar in the blood when the body is unable to produce enough of the hormone, insulin, which should control blood sugar levels (file image)

My journey to the discovery of how to reverse type 2 diabetes has been driven by the heartbreaking stories I’ve witnessed over the years.

Practising medicine as a hospital specialist means that I saw the most seriously affected. Meanwhile, my friends and colleagues in general practice see the whole range of damage that diabetes visits upon men and women — and their families.

Not just loss of mobility, sight and health, but the entire fallout of unemployment, family stresses and depression.

It’s the reason I so passionately believe those diagnosed with type 2 diabetes deserve a real choice: conventional ‘treatment’ or a chance to return to full health.

One effect of diabetes is premature heart disease (file image). A 59-year-old lady I met in the coronary care unit required major surgery, then long-term drug treatment

One effect of diabetes is premature heart disease (file image). A 59-year-old lady I met in the coronary care unit required major surgery, then long-term drug treatment

And it’s why I chose to work at the cutting edge of diabetes research, probing the precise causes for this complex, debilitating disease. Indeed, it was my groundbreaking work which Dr Michael Mosley famously used to successfully reverse his own diabetes diagnosis.

Now I’ve written a revolutionary new book, Life Without Diabetes, based on these decades of scientific discovery.

Serialised all next week in the Mail, it reveals the science behind the cause of diabetes, and guides you through an effective, three-stage weight-loss plan that could save your life and the life of anyone you know who is at risk of, or currently battling, this horrific disease.

Dubbed the Newcastle Diet, the Professor carried out a study which showed people who stopped taking their diabetes tables saw their blood sugar levels drop to normal

And it really is as easy to follow as 1, 2, 3. Beginning with a short and super-effective diabetes-busting phase, where a simple liquid diet allows your body to begin reversing the root causes of the illness, stages two and three show you the delicious meals (from hearty haddock and prawn chowder to spicy harissa aubergines) you can incorporate into your diet to keep diabetes away and transform your health — potentially for ever.

Type 2 diabetes is characterised by too much sugar in the blood when the body is unable to produce enough of the hormone, insulin, which should control blood sugar levels, and cells throughout the body stop responding effectively to the insulin they do receive.

The liquid diet allows your body to begin reversing the root causes of the illness, stages two and three show you the delicious meals such as hearty haddock chowder (pictured, file image)

The disease is a true merchant of misery. One of the first patients I treated with type 2 diabetes was a man in his mid-40s with severe diabetic foot ulcers.

High blood sugar levels damage nerves and circulation and make terrible ulcers more likely.

So serious was this man’s condition that I was forced to battle to save his feet, all the while acutely aware that the months he spent in hospital meant agonising time spent away from family, away from work.

Then there was the 59-year-old lady I met in the coronary care unit. Until her heart attack struck, in the prime of life, her type 2 diabetes had seemed to be just a bit of inconvenience.

But this apparently fit lady had suffered one of the most sinister, silent complications of her diabetes — premature heart disease.

She required major surgery, then long-term drug treatment. Her outlook was profoundly changed by this shocking brush with death, and she undoubtedly led a less carefree life than she may have done.

Had we known then about the possibility of reversing type 2 diabetes, these two people may have been able to avoid these devastating problems and enjoy an active life way beyond retirement.

Watching my patients suffer spurred me to move into research, and since the Eighties I have worked both in research and as a consultant specialising in diabetes.

In 2006, I expanded my research, leading a multi million-pound project at Newcastle University, which brought together brilliant physicists with state-of-the-art scanners to create the Newcastle Magnetic Resonance Centre.

My interest in this was to investigate the main organs involved with diabetes, the liver and pancreas, which jointly control your body’s management of insulin and glucose.

Thanks to these sophisticated scans, we found those with type 2 diabetes had a clear and consistent picture of excess fat in both the liver and the pancreas — far more than in people without diabetes even if overweight.

Excess fat attacks the pancreas’s insulin-producing cells, leading to them malfunction. The result is type 2 diabetes (file image)

Our focus turned to investigating the possible links between the fat deposits in these organs and two apparently separate problems: the failure of the pancreas to make insulin normally and failure of the insulin to work properly.

Ask anyone what type 2 diabetes is, and they’ll tell you the disease is linked with too much sugar. And, yes, it’s true diabetes occurs when there’s excess glucose in the bloodstream. But our research has shown type 2 diabetes is actually caused by just one factor: too much fat in the liver and pancreas.

We were able to show that excess sugar in the blood is converted to fat, which is stored around the body, including in and around the organs. If this fat accumulation continues (if you eat too much and exercise too little), at some point you reach your own ‘personal fat threshold’ when fat in the liver and pancreas start to impede their ability to function effectively.

Normally, your liver will produce just the right amount of glucose that your body needs. But when there is excess fat in the liver, it will produce too much glucose and also pass excess fat to the pancreas.

As we saw on our scans, this excess fat then attacks the pancreas’s insulin-producing cells, leading to them malfunction. The result is type 2 diabetes. Anyone given a diabetes diagnosis was routinely advised to try to lose weight. Doctors have long known diabetes is linked with, and exacerbated by, being overweight.

However, it always seemed to be a rather half-hearted request, rarely backed up with support. And it was made so much harder by the fact many diabetes drugs have the side-effect of making people actually gain weight, instead of losing it. Then, in 2006, I had the epiphany that led me to understand the root cause of the disease.

I was flicking through a scientific journal when I spotted a graph which showed blood sugar levels plummeted in people with type 2 diabetes in the days immediately following bariatric surgery (an operation to reduce the size of the stomach).

On the graph, the line plunged from the usual high level on the day before surgery to absolutely normal by day seven. Normal blood sugar levels? In seven days? This was unheard of.

The study authors suggested the rapid change might be due to the effect of hormones made by the gut and impacted by the surgery.

There are 3.8 million people living with a type 2 diabetes diagnosis and thousands more are pre-diabetic, according to latest figures (file image)

There are 3.8 million people living with a type 2 diabetes diagnosis and thousands more are pre-diabetic, according to latest figures (file image)

But these hormones are typically activated by food, and could not be active in people undergoing stomach surgery who were ‘nil by mouth’ for seven days after the operation.

something else was clearly happening. When you stop eating for a few days, or go on a strict diet, your body will tap into the fat in your liver as a source of energy because it’s far easier to access and metabolise than the fat under your skin. Could this change have caused blood sugar levels to be normalised so rapidly?

Perhaps, I reasoned, this process was somehow reversing the insulin resistance of the liver cells in order to prompt a sudden return to normal function. But could the same process also be enough to prompt the insulin-producing cells of the pancreas back into action?

It seemed tantalisingly possible. We just needed to somehow test the theory and discover, through our scans, whether rapid weight loss could have a sufficiently swift impact on the function of the liver and pancreas to normalise previously uncontrolled blood sugar levels.

In 2011, we published the results of the groundbreaking study which replicated the dramatic reduction in calories immediately before and after bariatric surgery by putting people with type 2 diabetes on a low-calorie liquid diet. Diabetes UK had the foresight to fund this.

We asked everyone on the study to stop taking their diabetes tablets and the results were astounding. Within seven days, their blood sugar levels had dropped to normal — just like after bariatric surgery.

Incredibly, our tests on their liver and pancreas confirmed fat levels inside these organs had decreased and were beginning to function normally again.

To our amazement, we were able to say, with scientific proof, that the underlying cause of type 2 diabetes was reversible, through diet and adequate weight loss. It was a monumental finding.

Although a small number accepted the breakthrough, inevitably it was met by enormous scepticism from many experts. Regardless, we received a huge number of emails from people asking to follow our study to reverse their own diabetes. We had picked low-calorie meal replacement shakes as hunger is not a big problem and daily decisions were avoided on this diet. But they had also proved very practical, and many decided to try them for themselves.


Sir Lindsay Hoyle opens up about diabetes diagnosis
Carrying a lighter load 

Try to get up out of a chair or walk upstairs while carrying a 7 lb bag of potatoes (that’s ½ st or 3.2 kg). Then do the same without. That’s how much you can expect to lose in the first week of this diet plan — and it will make a profound difference to how you feel day to day.

Everything you do will seem so much easier and it will reinforce the motivation to lose the key 15 kg by the end of the 12-week period.

As the months passed, we were inundated with amazing stories of how people — young and old, male and female, rich and poor, living in India, the U.S., South America, Europe or elsewhere — were achieving normal blood sugar levels and coming off their diabetes medication by trying what was being dubbed The Newcastle Diet.

That same year, I received a call from Dr Michael Mosley, who was very interested in our work. He was keen to see if he could follow our plan to reverse his own type 2 diabetes.

We worked together on his various TV programmes, and the publication of his 8-Week Blood Sugar Diet series, which has been enormously helpful in making my theories accessible to millions worldwide.

In the many research studies we have worked on in the nine years since, we have used the low-calorie meal replacement soups and shakes. The idea of them may be more associated with diet fads of the Eighties, but the need to follow this stage up with a controlled return to eating real food had been overlooked. Until now.

Stage one is the rapid weight loss phase — an eight to 12-week period using liquid meals as the basis to effectively reverse your diabetes. Stage two allows the gradual reintroduction of real meals while avoiding the return of blood sugar problems.

Finally, there’s stage three, a long-term plan of healthy eating, ensuring diabetes stays away, hopefully for ever.


Woman reversed Type 2 diabetes by 'melting away' her fat with new diet

Our many volunteers found the 1, 2, 3 eating plan nowhere near as difficult as they had feared.

Not only was their blood sugar transformed, most lost about 15 kg — about 2 st 5 lb — in just eight weeks and felt better than they had done for years.

We added a plate of non-starchy veg to stage one to compliment the shakes and soups, aware that some may miss having ‘something to chew’, as well as warding off any potential constipation.

Our research goes on. For now, though, we’re confident that this is the recipe for success for ridding oneself of type 2 diabetes, and changing your life for good.

...and the slim line Hairy Biker who proved it really works 

Having always been a food lover — as a kid, my aunt told me, kindly, ‘you’re not exactly fat, David, but you are round’ — I was never bothered about dieting, even though, like many people, my weight crept up by a stone each decade.

In my 20s, I was a pretty healthy 13½ st (which is fine for my 6ft height), and 14½ st in my 30s was not too bad either, but I’d clearly reached my health limit at 18 st in my 50s.

Within three months, Dave Myers had shifted more than 3 st (from 114 kg to 95 kg) thanks to a new diet

For it was then that a routine check-up in 2009 revealed my blood sugar levels to be far too high and the GP gave me the worrying news that I was ‘pre-diabetic’. This is where your body is struggling to deal with blood sugar levels, and it is a very clear sign that you are about to develop full-blown type 2 diabetes.

I didn’t have any symptoms of diabetes (such as excessive thirst or blurred vision), but my blood sugar levels were far too high.

My GP put me on metformin tablets and drugs to control my blood pressure. I was also probably advised to lose a bit of weight. But even then I didn’t listen. It was only when I first met Roy that I finally took notice.

We met eight years ago when he was invited to join our TV series as an expert. He took one look at me and my co‑Hairy Biker Simon King and said: ‘You’re both morbidly obese.’

It was great TV and the impetus we needed to launch the series in 2012.

But what the viewers never got to see was the behind-the-scenes support he gave me. He made it clear that I was looking down the barrel of a gun, and diabetes was one disease I seriously needed to avoid at any cost.

Then, off camera one day, he quietly took me aside and told me if I lost weight I could reverse the pre-diabetic state, get off the drugs and effectively protect myself against getting full-blown diabetes.

I was shocked, but intrigued.

This was pretty revolutionary news at the time and it was something I was keen to try.

From that point on I worshipped at the altar of Professor Taylor. It wasn’t always easy, particularly when you’re working with Michelin-starred chefs asking you to taste their exquisite mashed potato which basically wipes out your entire daily calorie allowance in one mouthful.

Luckily the weight dropped off pretty fast, and within three months I’d shifted more than 3 st (from 114 kg to 95 kg) and Si’s weight dropped by nearly 4 st.

We felt great, but I noticed the impact first on my blood pressure, which was falling so low I’d end up feeling dizzy when exercising.

Just two months into the experiment, Roy advised me to stop taking my diabetes tablets and to come off my blood pressure pills because I’d clearly lost enough weight that my organs were beginning to function normally again. That was a real thrill.

Roy’s diagnosis was confirmed at a check-up six months after I started losing weight, when tests showed my blood sugar levels were smack‑bang in the normal category. Just as Roy predicted, losing weight had reversed my slide into diabetes.

I’ve worked hard to maintain that weight loss and I’ve had my blood sugar levels tested every six months for the past seven years and the results have remained normal.

One of Roy’s most important pieces of advice is that if you want to avoid diabetes, you should aim to stay as close as you can to the weight you were when you were 21.

Sadly, I never did get back to the 34 in waist of my youth. But I managed a 36 in waist . . . which wasn’t bad from a starting point of 49 in.

I’m still in contact with Roy and he says I could improve my health even further if I lose another 2 st.

I might have laughed at the idea a few years ago, but I’m 62 now so I might make a concerted effort to shift that extra weight this spring.

What is Type 2 Diabetes? 

Diabetes is a serious condition characterised by having too much sugar in your blood.

Metformin pills taken to treat Diabetes

Metformin pills taken to treat Diabetes

  • When you eat, food is converted into glucose (a form of sugar) and sent out into the bloodstream as fuel for cells throughout your body.
  • In a healthy person, the pancreas produces a hormone called insulin which steps in to control fluctuating blood sugar levels after and in-between meals.
  • Type 2 diabetes is a progressive disease which causes your pancreas to produce insufficient insulin and the cells around your body to be less reactive to insulin.
  • It is caused by a build up of fat in the liver — the chief role of which is to filter the blood — and the pancreas.
  • When you eat too much food, the excess sugar in your blood is converted to fat, which is stored around the body, including your organs, ultimately impeding their ability to work.
  • Normally, your liver will produce just the right amount of glucose that your body needs. But when it contains excess fat, it produces too much glucose and also passes fat to the pancreas. This excess fat then attacks the pancreas’s insulin-producing cells, leading them to malfunction. The result is type 2 diabetes.

JOIN THE 1,2,3 REVOLUTION

  • Common signs of diabetes include increased thirst, passing water more often, especially at night, extreme tiredness or blurred vision. If you are concerned, speak to your GP or practice nurse.
  • If you have already been warned by your GP that your blood sugar levels are high or in the ‘pre-diabetes’ range, this plan will certainly help you avoid full-blown type 2 diabetes.
  • Your risk of type 2 diabetes is increased if you know you are overweight. This plan will help reduce your risk.
  • If you have a close family member (parents, siblings, grandparents) with type 2 diabetes, you are considered to be a risk of the disease. Your risk may be elevated if you had gestational diabetes when pregnant or if you are of Asian or Far Eastern descent.
  • Your GP surgery might be willing to perform a (free) blood test to screen for diabetes, or you can drop into a Lloyds pharmacy for a swift check (£5, no appointment necessary). Aim to attend in the morning before eating breakfast, for a more accurate result.
  • If you have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes talk to your GP or practice nurse and discuss this plan (your medication levels will probably need to be reduced, under supervision, as you lose weight).
  • This approach is only suitable in type 2 diabetes, and not type 1 or other forms of diabetes.

Adapted by Louise Atkinson from Life Without Diabetes, by Professor Roy Taylor (Short Books, £9.99). © Roy Taylor 2020. To order a copy for £6.50 (a 35 per cent discount) go to mailshop.co.uk or call 01603 648155. Offer valid until February 9, 2020. P&P is free.

Professor Roy Taylor, who is based at Newcastle Magnetic Resonance Centre,

Professor Roy Taylor, who is based at Newcastle Magnetic Resonance Centre, 

No doubt you’re full of resolutions for what you want to achieve in the first few months of this new decade. Maybe you’ve decided to join the gym or master a new language. A lot can be achieved in a few short weeks, after all.

So what if I told you that by March – just eight weeks from now — you, or someone you love, could make a truly revolutionary change. For that is how long, I’ve conclusively discovered, it takes for someone to be rid of type 2 diabetes, reversing it potentially for ever.

The stakes couldn’t be higher. As I’ve witnessed during the course of my medical career, this is the epidemic of our times; a health crisis that puts an intolerable strain on the NHS, accounting for a massive 10 per cent of the entire health service budget, at the cost of more than £10 billion a year to the taxpayer.

According to the latest figures, 3.8 million are living with a type 2 diabetes diagnosis and thousands more are pre-diabetic.

And, make no mistake, this is a truly gruesome illness, as I’ve seen first-hand many times since becoming a doctor in the Seventies.

Excruciating pain in your legs and feet are all agonising consequences of Type 2 Diabetes. A diagnosis of the debilitating disease doubles the risk of having a stroke and considerably ups your risk of heart attack (file image)

Excruciating pain in your legs and feet are all agonising consequences of Type 2 Diabetes. A diagnosis of the debilitating disease doubles the risk of having a stroke and considerably ups your risk of heart attack (file image)

Even if you try to muddle along at first, being more careful about what you eat and taking your pills diligently, type 2 diabetes is usually progressive — which means that it is only likely to worsen.

Amputations, blindness, nerve damage and excruciating pain in your legs and feet are all agonising consequences of this debilitating disease. With every passing year you are very likely to need more drugs to control worsening blood sugar swings, as well as enduring more pain. You may have to retire early and your life expectancy will certainly be shortened.

Whatever your age, a diabetes diagnosis doubles your risk of having a stroke and considerably ups your risk of heart attack.

I’m sorry if this all seems rather blunt, but you don’t want a doctor who hides the truth.

Type 2 diabetes is characterised by too much sugar in the blood when the body is unable to produce enough of the hormone, insulin, which should control blood sugar levels (file image)

Type 2 diabetes is characterised by too much sugar in the blood when the body is unable to produce enough of the hormone, insulin, which should control blood sugar levels (file image)

My journey to the discovery of how to reverse type 2 diabetes has been driven by the heartbreaking stories I’ve witnessed over the years.

Practising medicine as a hospital specialist means that I saw the most seriously affected. Meanwhile, my friends and colleagues in general practice see the whole range of damage that diabetes visits upon men and women — and their families.

Not just loss of mobility, sight and health, but the entire fallout of unemployment, family stresses and depression.

It’s the reason I so passionately believe those diagnosed with type 2 diabetes deserve a real choice: conventional ‘treatment’ or a chance to return to full health.

One effect of diabetes is premature heart disease (file image). A 59-year-old lady I met in the coronary care unit required major surgery, then long-term drug treatment
One effect of diabetes is premature heart disease (file image). A 59-year-old lady I met in the coronary care unit required major surgery, then long-term drug treatment

And it’s why I chose to work at the cutting edge of diabetes research, probing the precise causes for this complex, debilitating disease. Indeed, it was my groundbreaking work which Dr Michael Mosley famously used to successfully reverse his own diabetes diagnosis.

Now I’ve written a revolutionary new book, Life Without Diabetes, based on these decades of scientific discovery.

Serialised all next week in the Mail, it reveals the science behind the cause of diabetes, and guides you through an effective, three-stage weight-loss plan that could save your life and the life of anyone you know who is at risk of, or currently battling, this horrific disease.

Dubbed the Newcastle Diet, the Professor carried out a study which showed people who stopped taking their diabetes tables saw their blood sugar levels drop to normal

And it really is as easy to follow as 1, 2, 3. Beginning with a short and super-effective diabetes-busting phase, where a simple liquid diet allows your body to begin reversing the root causes of the illness, stages two and three show you the delicious meals (from hearty haddock and prawn chowder to spicy harissa aubergines) you can incorporate into your diet to keep diabetes away and transform your health — potentially for ever.

Type 2 diabetes is characterised by too much sugar in the blood when the body is unable to produce enough of the hormone, insulin, which should control blood sugar levels, and cells throughout the body stop responding effectively to the insulin they do receive.

The liquid diet allows your body to begin reversing the root causes of the illness, stages two and three show you the delicious meals such as hearty haddock chowder (pictured, file image)

The disease is a true merchant of misery. One of the first patients I treated with type 2 diabetes was a man in his mid-40s with severe diabetic foot ulcers.

High blood sugar levels damage nerves and circulation and make terrible ulcers more likely.

So serious was this man’s condition that I was forced to battle to save his feet, all the while acutely aware that the months he spent in hospital meant agonising time spent away from family, away from work.

Then there was the 59-year-old lady I met in the coronary care unit. Until her heart attack struck, in the prime of life, her type 2 diabetes had seemed to be just a bit of inconvenience.

But this apparently fit lady had suffered one of the most sinister, silent complications of her diabetes — premature heart disease.

She required major surgery, then long-term drug treatment. Her outlook was profoundly changed by this shocking brush with death, and she undoubtedly led a less carefree life than she may have done.

Had we known then about the possibility of reversing type 2 diabetes, these two people may have been able to avoid these devastating problems and enjoy an active life way beyond retirement.

Watching my patients suffer spurred me to move into research, and since the Eighties I have worked both in research and as a consultant specialising in diabetes.

In 2006, I expanded my research, leading a multi million-pound project at Newcastle University, which brought together brilliant physicists with state-of-the-art scanners to create the Newcastle Magnetic Resonance Centre.

My interest in this was to investigate the main organs involved with diabetes, the liver and pancreas, which jointly control your body’s management of insulin and glucose.

Thanks to these sophisticated scans, we found those with type 2 diabetes had a clear and consistent picture of excess fat in both the liver and the pancreas — far more than in people without diabetes even if overweight.

Excess fat attacks the pancreas’s insulin-producing cells, leading to them malfunction. The result is type 2 diabetes (file image)

Our focus turned to investigating the possible links between the fat deposits in these organs and two apparently separate problems: the failure of the pancreas to make insulin normally and failure of the insulin to work properly.

Ask anyone what type 2 diabetes is, and they’ll tell you the disease is linked with too much sugar. And, yes, it’s true diabetes occurs when there’s excess glucose in the bloodstream. But our research has shown type 2 diabetes is actually caused by just one factor: too much fat in the liver and pancreas.

We were able to show that excess sugar in the blood is converted to fat, which is stored around the body, including in and around the organs. If this fat accumulation continues (if you eat too much and exercise too little), at some point you reach your own ‘personal fat threshold’ when fat in the liver and pancreas start to impede their ability to function effectively.

Normally, your liver will produce just the right amount of glucose that your body needs. But when there is excess fat in the liver, it will produce too much glucose and also pass excess fat to the pancreas.

As we saw on our scans, this excess fat then attacks the pancreas’s insulin-producing cells, leading to them malfunction. The result is type 2 diabetes. Anyone given a diabetes diagnosis was routinely advised to try to lose weight. Doctors have long known diabetes is linked with, and exacerbated by, being overweight.

However, it always seemed to be a rather half-hearted request, rarely backed up with support. And it was made so much harder by the fact many diabetes drugs have the side-effect of making people actually gain weight, instead of losing it. Then, in 2006, I had the epiphany that led me to understand the root cause of the disease.

I was flicking through a scientific journal when I spotted a graph which showed blood sugar levels plummeted in people with type 2 diabetes in the days immediately following bariatric surgery (an operation to reduce the size of the stomach).

On the graph, the line plunged from the usual high level on the day before surgery to absolutely normal by day seven. Normal blood sugar levels? In seven days? This was unheard of.

The study authors suggested the rapid change might be due to the effect of hormones made by the gut and impacted by the surgery.

There are 3.8 million people living with a type 2 diabetes diagnosis and thousands more are pre-diabetic, according to latest figures (file image)

But these hormones are typically activated by food, and could not be active in people undergoing stomach surgery who were ‘nil by mouth’ for seven days after the operation.

something else was clearly happening. When you stop eating for a few days, or go on a strict diet, your body will tap into the fat in your liver as a source of energy because it’s far easier to access and metabolise than the fat under your skin. Could this change have caused blood sugar levels to be normalised so rapidly?

Perhaps, I reasoned, this process was somehow reversing the insulin resistance of the liver cells in order to prompt a sudden return to normal function. But could the same process also be enough to prompt the insulin-producing cells of the pancreas back into action?

It seemed tantalisingly possible. We just needed to somehow test the theory and discover, through our scans, whether rapid weight loss could have a sufficiently swift impact on the function of the liver and pancreas to normalise previously uncontrolled blood sugar levels.

In 2011, we published the results of the groundbreaking study which replicated the dramatic reduction in calories immediately before and after bariatric surgery by putting people with type 2 diabetes on a low-calorie liquid diet. Diabetes UK had the foresight to fund this.

We asked everyone on the study to stop taking their diabetes tablets and the results were astounding. Within seven days, their blood sugar levels had dropped to normal — just like after bariatric surgery.

Incredibly, our tests on their liver and pancreas confirmed fat levels inside these organs had decreased and were beginning to function normally again.

To our amazement, we were able to say, with scientific proof, that the underlying cause of type 2 diabetes was reversible, through diet and adequate weight loss. It was a monumental finding.

Although a small number accepted the breakthrough, inevitably it was met by enormous scepticism from many experts. Regardless, we received a huge number of emails from people asking to follow our study to reverse their own diabetes. We had picked low-calorie meal replacement shakes as hunger is not a big problem and daily decisions were avoided on this diet. But they had also proved very practical, and many decided to try them for themselves.

Sir Lindsay Hoyle opens up about diabetes diagnosisCarrying a lighter load 

Try to get up out of a chair or walk upstairs while carrying a 7 lb bag of potatoes (that’s ½ st or 3.2 kg). Then do the same without. That’s how much you can expect to lose in the first week of this diet plan — and it will make a profound difference to how you feel day to day.

Everything you do will seem so much easier and it will reinforce the motivation to lose the key 15 kg by the end of the 12-week period.As the months passed, we were inundated with amazing stories of how people — young and old, male and female, rich and poor, living in India, the U.S., South America, Europe or elsewhere — were achieving normal blood sugar levels and coming off their diabetes medication by trying what was being dubbed The Newcastle Diet.

That same year, I received a call from Dr Michael Mosley, who was very interested in our work. He was keen to see if he could follow our plan to reverse his own type 2 diabetes.

We worked together on his various TV programmes, and the publication of his 8-Week Blood Sugar Diet series, which has been enormously helpful in making my theories accessible to millions worldwide.

In the many research studies we have worked on in the nine years since, we have used the low-calorie meal replacement soups and shakes. The idea of them may be more associated with diet fads of the Eighties, but the need to follow this stage up with a controlled return to eating real food had been overlooked. Until now.

Stage one is the rapid weight loss phase — an eight to 12-week period using liquid meals as the basis to effectively reverse your diabetes. Stage two allows the gradual reintroduction of real meals while avoiding the return of blood sugar problems.

Woman reversed Type 2 diabetes by 'melting away' her fat with new diet

Our many volunteers found the 1, 2, 3 eating plan nowhere near as difficult as they had feared.

Not only was their blood sugar transformed, most lost about 15 kg — about 2 st 5 lb — in just eight weeks and felt better than they had done for years.

We added a plate of non-starchy veg to stage one to compliment the shakes and soups, aware that some may miss having ‘something to chew’, as well as warding off any potential constipation.

Our research goes on. For now, though, we’re confident that this is the recipe for success for ridding oneself of type 2 diabetes, and changing your life for good.

...and the slim line Hairy Biker who proved it really works 

Having always been a food lover — as a kid, my aunt told me, kindly, ‘you’re not exactly fat, David, but you are round’ — I was never bothered about dieting, even though, like many people, my weight crept up by a stone each decade.

In my 20s, I was a pretty healthy 13½ st (which is fine for my 6ft height), and 14½ st in my 30s was not too bad either, but I’d clearly reached my health limit at 18 st in my 50s.

Within three months, Dave Myers had shifted more than 3 st (from 114 kg to 95 kg) thanks to a new diet

Within three months, Dave Myers had shifted more than 3 st (from 114 kg to 95 kg) thanks to a new diet 

For it was then that a routine check-up in 2009 revealed my blood sugar levels to be far too high and the GP gave me the worrying news that I was ‘pre-diabetic’. This is where your body is struggling to deal with blood sugar levels, and it is a very clear sign that you are about to develop full-blown type 2 diabetes.

I didn’t have any symptoms of diabetes (such as excessive thirst or blurred vision), but my blood sugar levels were far too high.

My GP put me on metformin tablets and drugs to control my blood pressure. I was also probably advised to lose a bit of weight. But even then I didn’t listen. It was only when I first met Roy that I finally took notice.

We met eight years ago when he was invited to join our TV series as an expert. He took one look at me and my co‑Hairy Biker Simon King and said: ‘You’re both morbidly obese.’

It was great TV and the impetus we needed to launch the series in 2012.

But what the viewers never got to see was the behind-the-scenes support he gave me. He made it clear that I was looking down the barrel of a gun, and diabetes was one disease I seriously needed to avoid at any cost.

Then, off camera one day, he quietly took me aside and told me if I lost weight I could reverse the pre-diabetic state, get off the drugs and effectively protect myself against getting full-blown diabetes.

I was shocked, but intrigued.

This was pretty revolutionary news at the time and it was something I was keen to try.

From that point on I worshipped at the altar of Professor Taylor. It wasn’t always easy, particularly when you’re working with Michelin-starred chefs asking you to taste their exquisite mashed potato which basically wipes out your entire daily calorie allowance in one mouthful.

Luckily the weight dropped off pretty fast, and within three months I’d shifted more than 3 st (from 114 kg to 95 kg) and Si’s weight dropped by nearly 4 st.

We felt great, but I noticed the impact first on my blood pressure, which was falling so low I’d end up feeling dizzy when exercising.

Just two months into the experiment, Roy advised me to stop taking my diabetes tablets and to come off my blood pressure pills because I’d clearly lost enough weight that my organs were beginning to function normally again. That was a real thrill.

Roy’s diagnosis was confirmed at a check-up six months after I started losing weight, when tests showed my blood sugar levels were smack‑bang in the normal category. Just as Roy predicted, losing weight had reversed my slide into diabetes.

I’ve worked hard to maintain that weight loss and I’ve had my blood sugar levels tested every six months for the past seven years and the results have remained normal.

One of Roy’s most important pieces of advice is that if you want to avoid diabetes, you should aim to stay as close as you can to the weight you were when you were 21.

Sadly, I never did get back to the 34 in waist of my youth. But I managed a 36 in waist . . . which wasn’t bad from a starting point of 49 in.

I’m still in contact with Roy and he says I could improve my health even further if I lose another 2 st.

I might have laughed at the idea a few years ago, but I’m 62 now so I might make a concerted effort to shift that extra weight this spring.

What is Type 2 Diabetes? 

Diabetes is a serious condition characterised by having too much sugar in your blood.

Metformin pills taken to treat Diabetes

Metformin pills taken to treat Diabetes

  • When you eat, food is converted into glucose (a form of sugar) and sent out into the bloodstream as fuel for cells throughout your body.
  • In a healthy person, the pancreas produces a hormone called insulin which steps in to control fluctuating blood sugar levels after and in-between meals.
  • Type 2 diabetes is a progressive disease which causes your pancreas to produce insufficient insulin and the cells around your body to be less reactive to insulin.
  • It is caused by a build up of fat in the liver — the chief role of which is to filter the blood — and the pancreas.
  • When you eat too much food, the excess sugar in your blood is converted to fat, which is stored around the body, including your organs, ultimately impeding their ability to work.
  • Normally, your liver will produce just the right amount of glucose that your body needs. But when it contains excess fat, it produces too much glucose and also passes fat to the pancreas. This excess fat then attacks the pancreas’s insulin-producing cells, leading them to malfunction. The result is type 2 diabetes.

JOIN THE 1,2,3 REVOLUTION

  • Common signs of diabetes include increased thirst, passing water more often, especially at night, extreme tiredness or blurred vision. If you are concerned, speak to your GP or practice nurse.
  • If you have already been warned by your GP that your blood sugar levels are high or in the ‘pre-diabetes’ range, this plan will certainly help you avoid full-blown type 2 diabetes.
  • Your risk of type 2 diabetes is increased if you know you are overweight. This plan will help reduce your risk.
  • If you have a close family member (parents, siblings, grandparents) with type 2 diabetes, you are considered to be a risk of the disease. Your risk may be elevated if you had gestational diabetes when pregnant or if you are of Asian or Far Eastern descent.
  • Your GP surgery might be willing to perform a (free) blood test to screen for diabetes, or you can drop into a Lloyds pharmacy for a swift check (£5, no appointment necessary). Aim to attend in the morning before eating breakfast, for a more accurate result.
  • If you have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes talk to your GP or practice nurse and discuss this plan (your medication levels will probably need to be reduced, under supervision, as you lose weight).
  • This approach is only suitable in type 2 diabetes, and not type 1 or other forms of diabetes.

Adapted by Louise Atkinson from Life Without Diabetes, by Professor Roy Taylor (Short Books, £9.99). © Roy Taylor 2020. To order a copy for £6.50 (a 35 per cent discount) go to mailshop.co.uk or call 01603 648155. Offer valid until February 9, 2020. P&P is free.

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