Eat healthily to reverse diabetes risk

A British team has examined whether adhering to the Alternative Healthy Eating Index (AHEI) can help reverse metabolic syndrome (a cluster of risk factors for heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes). The AHEI is a set of nutritional guidelines that emphasise eating whole rather than refined grains, white rather than red meat and lots of fruits, vegetables and nuts. The researchers studied 339 people with metabolic syndrome who were participants in the Whitehall II study, a long-running study of the health of British civil servants. After five years, the results showed that those people who adhered the most closely to the AHEI were nearly twice as likely to recover from metabolic syndrome. Those with the healthiest diets were nearly three times as likely to have reversed their metabolic syndrome as those with the unhealthiest eating patterns. Healthy eating was additionally shown to have a more pronounced positive effect for people who started out with high levels of harmful triglycerides. (Overall diet history and reversibility of the metabolic syndrome over 5 years: the Whitehall II prospective).


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