A successful NHS soup and shake diet is being offered to more and more people across the country as a way of achieving remission from T2D. So far 2,000 people with Type 2 diabetes have benefitted from the diet as part of the DiRECT – Diabetes Remission Clinical Trial.
This group all aged over 18 and with minimum BMIs of 25, lost an average of 7.2kg each (over one stone) in the first month of the programme. After three months, the weight loss increased to around 13.4kg (over two stones), and the early results show people did not regain the weight. Results from the DiRECT study showed remission from T2D is closely tied to weight loss and almost half of people who lost weight in the DiRECT trial were in remission after one year.
The programme involves people with T2D being given low-calorie soup and shakes as total diet replacement products for three months. They are then supported to reintroduce foods that are part of a healthy, balanced diet while maintaining their weight loss, and invited to virtual meetings with expert clinicians and group sessions with other people with Type 2 diabetes.
Alongside making changes to their diet, people taking part in the programme are also supported to increase their exercise levels. Volunteers in the DiRECT study will be tracked for the next seven years to see if they are able to maintain the lifestyle change.
The programme is already available in the following areas: South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw, Humber Coast and Vale, Greater Manchester, Frimley, Gloucestershire, Derbyshire, Birmingham and Solihull, Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes, North East London, North Central London.
It is being rolled out in the following additional locations over the course of 2022; North East & North Cumbria, West Yorkshire, Lancashire & South Cumbria, Nottingham & Nottinghamshire, Black Country, Somerset, Bristol, North Somerset & South Gloucestershire, Mid & South Essex, South West London, Kent & Medway, Sussex.
The charity Diabetes UK is supporting the research and is also funding a new trial called ReTUNE, to see if a similar approach to remission could be effective in people with a lower bodyweight, which has reported promising early results.
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