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How to reverse type 2 diabetes through diet: Interview with Brenda Davis, RD

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Canadian registered dietitian Brenda Davis on her work with diet to overcome type 2 diabetes.

Not only is Brenda Davis a specialist in type 2 diabetes but she is also part of a research team that has run a diabetes research and education project over several years in the Solomon Islands in the Pacific region.

The Solomon Islands has the highest incidence of diabetes amputation and deaths in the world. The have a population of 60,000 people on a very small land space without the ability to grow much fresh food. So the vast majority of their diet is dried, high-fat, high-sugar food product.

It has been the perfect research place to observe the effects of diet on type 2 diabetes and how a change in diet to a plant-based diet can have immediate and dramatic effects. This can include reversing type 2 diabetes.

All types of diabetes lead to a high risk of cardiovascular disease, heart disease, weight gain, intermittent claudication, increased risks of cancers and generally shorten life expectancy.

While traditional Western dictation has tried to use calorie control as a diabetes treatment, this has proved to be a failure for patients in both the short and long term.

Brenda Davis explains the kind of diabetes diet based on a plant based and vegan formula that the researchers used with participants in the programs. She talks about the importance of educating people about growing fresh produce within their immediate environment to improve their food and nutritional options and how that has an immediate effect on weight loss.

The project was so successful that participants had to have their diabetes medications adjusted and often discontinued. There was reduction in problematic high cholesterol and high levels of triglycerides down to a completely normal reading also leading to patients’ ability to eliminate medication for those disorders as well.

As a type 2 diabetes treatment this research project demonstrated the profound effectiveness of a plant-based diabetic diet on controlling and eliminating the disease. The change in diet was also accompanied by an education program for participants teaching them about nutrition, growing food and exercise.

What is further interesting about the population studied is that type 1 diabetes is very rare, indicating that the population was not genetically predisposed to diabetic disorders. Brenda Davis talks about how poor the Solomon Islands people are and how fresh food, which generally has to be imported, was too expensive for the general population.

When the researchers changed the participants’ diets to plant-based diets, recovery from type 2 diabetes happened as quickly as within a two-week period.

This research can be compared to similar research by Dr Neal Barnard from the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, who has also shown the effectiveness of plant-based diets in eliminating type 2 diabetes.

Brenda Davis goes on to talk about her deep concerns around the emerging promotion of high-meat based paleo diets that can lead to higher risks of colon and other cancers.

She has done research comparing paleo diets to plant-based diets, which is more akin to historically recorded paleo diets, and found modern-day, so-called paleo diets do not in reality compare to anthropological records.

For more information on Brenda Davis, including her book Defeating Diabetes, visit her website at

For help embracing plant-based eating – especially when willpower alone is not enough – get my Natural Eating & Vitality Hypnosis Program.

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