Earlier this year I posted about the ACCORD study that was discontinued because more subjects in the intensive-glucose-control arm of the study were dying than were those whose glucose was less strictly controlled. In this post I made the case that one of the reasons this might be happening is that the strict-glucose-control was brought about by various drug regimens, none of which address the underlying problem of too much insulin. If insulin resistance and hyperinsulinemia are the real problems here (and my bet is that they are), drug combinations deal only with one of the symptoms – the elevated glucose of type II diabetes – and not the underlying problem. The underlying problems continue to chug along causing more disease, disability and death. (Another possibility is that the drugs themselves are causing the increase in death.) All of which doesn’t really make the outcome all that surprising.
And even less surprising is the horde of diabetes ‘experts’ who are stampeding over the cliff with the idea that careful glucose control isn’t the panacea they had hoped it would be. Unfortunately, it isn’t they who will be splattered on the rocks below; it will be their patients instead.
Last week’s New England Journal of Medicine published the ACCORD study (full text here), and the authors concluded:
As compared with standard therapy, the use of intensive therapy to target normal glycated hemoglobin levels for 3.5 years increased mortality and did not significantly reduce major cardiovascular events. These findings identify a previously unrecognized harm of intensive glucose lowering in high-risk patients with type 2 diabetes.
The implication of these conclusions is that focusing on blood sugar control is a fool’s errand irrespective of how the blood sugar is controlled.
The low-carb diet is probably the single most effective method known of reducing insulin resistance, hyperinsulinemia and elevated blood sugar, yet it was ignored in the ACCORD study. And, unfortunately, is pretty much ignored throughout the mainstream medical community. Dr. Richard Feinman and the Nutrition & Metabolism society (of which yours truly is a member in good standing) would like to see that rectified. You can help by signing the petition below that will be presented to the NIH and/or other organizations (ADA, for example) and governmental bodies.
Here is the full text of the petition.
NIH must acknowledge existing science!
National Institute of Health re: the ACCORD Diabetes Study: “Intensively targeting blood sugar to near-normal levels … increases risk of death. ”
This statement is untrue. This study lowered blood glucose levels only by aggressive drug treatment.
Preventative measures and proven non-drug treatments are being ignored by the NIH, ADA and many other governing agencies.
There is abundant scientific evidence proving a carbohydrate restricted diet can be as effective as drugs in lowering blood glucose levels safely. Many times diet is more effective than medication in controlling diabetes – all without side effects or increased risk of death.
I ask that the NIH publically retract the above statement. It is misleading the public.
I also request that the NIH acknowledge the existing science and fund more research by the experts who have experience with carbohydrate restriction as a means of treatment for diabetes.
For more info, or to help people with diabetes, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org .
Click here for petition
As always, these things carry much more weight if they are personalized, so take a minute and add a brief comment about your own experience with low-carb diets.
Thanks from all of us at the Nutrition and Metabolism Society in helping us reach our goal of 15,000 signatures.