Remember Glynis Larkin’s weight loss story from last week? We were amazed at her results in such a short time – and so we wanted to delve a bit more into Dr Michael Mosley’s latest diet, which is aimed at anyone with raised blood sugar levels. That might mean you’ve got type 2 diabetes, or pre-diabetes. Or, you could be at risk of either and not know it – which is a huge proportion of Australians.
So what’s The 8 Week Blood Sugar Diet (BSD) all about? Dr Mosley – creator of the hugely popular 5:2 Fast Diet – was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes himself several years ago, and wanted to devise a diet specifically for people with pre-diabetes, or type 2 diabetes. Considering what diabetes can mean – hypertension, raised cholesterol levels, increased risk of stroke, blindness and eye issues, impotence, dementia, kidney disease and scarily, limb amputations – we reckon it’s worth doing everything you can to sidestep it.
Here are some reasons why you might want to consider this diet.
It’s a short, fast commitment. Many fitness and weight loss experts are now rethinking the whole ‘slow and steady’ approach to weight loss, believing that while you can start with the best intentions, it’s easy to lose focus – especially when your goal seems so far away. “Most of us have heard, countless times, that if you lose weight fast you will put it all back on even faster. It’s a key part of dieting folklore,” Dr Mosley writes. “But [many studies show] that if you want to diet successfully it can be better to lose weight quickly than slowly.”
If you have diabetes, it could reverse it. Of course, you’re never ‘cured’ of diabetes. But if you lose enough weight and keep it off you can remain free of it, says Professor Roy Taylor. His study showed that people with type 2 diabetes can, in just eight weeks, lose substantial amounts of weight and return blood sugars to normal or manageable levels. “We have shown that it is possible to reverse a disease that is still widely seen as irreversible.”
The results are super impressive. Professor Taylor’s study followed a group of diabetes volunteers on the 8-week, 800-a-day calorie diet. They lost an average of 15kg in weight, 12.5cm from around their waists, and sent their blood sugar back into the non-diabetic range.
The exercise plan is doable. You may worry that you won’t be able to do any exercise at all while on a diet much lower in calories than you’re used to. But that’s not the case. Prepare for lots of walking and a set of strength-building exercises you can do from home (no equipment required). If you want to up the ante, you can do HIIT (high intensity interval training), which is scientifically proven to help whittle your waistline yet takes just minutes a day. “It’s optional but very effective,” says Dr Mosley.
The food is super healthy. Forget crash diets where you drink lemon water or starve yourself. The BSD is based on a low-carb Mediterranean-style eating plan.
“It’s rich in olive oil, fish, nuts, fruit and vegetables but also lots of lovely things that down the years we’ve been told not to eat, such as full-fat yoghurt and eggs,” writes Dr Moseley.
“In huge, randomised studies researchers have found that not only do people get multiple health benefits from a Mediterranean style of eating but are good at sticking to it because they find it easy and enjoyable.”
For more info, check out The 8 Week Blood Sugar Diet by Dr Michael Mosley, RRP $14.99. And, if you need some inspiration, check out the simple and delicious meals from The 8 Week Blood Sugar Diet Recipe Book.