Intermittent Fasting and Diabetes

If you’ve been following this blog, you’ve seen a previous article that mentioned a range of benefits of Intermittent Fasting. The benefits included a positive effect on Type 2 Diabetes – click here to read Intermittent Fasting: How Does It Help, if you have’t yet done so.

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Benefits for Diabetics

  1. Intermittent fasting can be safely practised by diabetics (under supervision, with monitoring) ​1,2​
  2. Insulin resistance is improved ​1​
  3. Reduction in possibility of major, adverse cardiovascular events​1​
  4. Improvement in metabolic and inflammatory pathways ​1​
  5. Lower risk of coronary artery disease ​1​
  6. Improved blood glucose regulation and tolerance ​2–4​
  7. Fasting can be therapeutic for type 2 diabetes ​1,4–6​

In a nutshell, what the above points say, is that our blood sugar levels will improve, our body’s response to insulin will improve (which means lower insulin resistance and greater insulin sensitivity) further leading to lower insulin levels in the body (reduced hyperinsulinemia), and in combination will effect a bunch of other areas of our bodies that can help prolong our lifespans and increase the quality of our lives.

There is some controversy about claiming the reversibility of type 2 Diabetes. I will however say this. After you’ve understood the science behind Intermittent Fasting, you’ll find that fasting, combined with a low carb healthy fat diet, at the very least, is a sustainable way of life that will ensure much better blood glucose control than ever before.

It is also likely to stop or slow down the pace of what is otherwise called a ‘chronic, progressive disease’, which means the intensity of pharmacological treatment might not increase over time – in simpler language – the drugs (or dose) you’re taking might not keep increasing as I’ve seen happen for most diabetics.

The possibility of reversal, depending on the progression of the disease, can be viewed as an additional incentive. To better understand the science, I suggest reading Dr. Jason Fung’s book, The Diabetes Code.

Associated Risks for Diabetics

  1. Hypoglycemia or reduction in blood sugar below recommended / safe levels, especially for those on certain medications. Can be offset by medical supervision and blood glucose monitoring.
  2. Protein, vitamin and mineral malnutrition. Can be offset by diet monitoring and multivitamin supplementation.

I’ll leave you with a video by Dr. Jason Fung.


  1. 1.
    Grajower M, Horne B. Clinical Management of Intermittent Fasting in Patients with Diabetes Mellitus. Nutrients. 2019;11(4). https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31003482.
  2. 2.
    Arnason T, Bowen M, Mansell K. Effects of intermittent fasting on health markers in those with type 2 diabetes: A pilot study. World J Diabetes. 2017;8(4):154-164. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28465792.
  3. 3.
    Liu H, Javaheri A, Godar R, et al. Intermittent fasting preserves beta-cell mass in obesity-induced diabetes via the autophagy-lysosome pathway. Autophagy. 2017;13(11):1952-1968. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28853981.
  4. 4.
    Ooi S, Pak S. Short-term Intermittent Fasting for Weight Loss: A Case Report. Cureus. 2019;11(4):e4482. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31249759.
  5. 5.
    Mattson M, Longo V, Harvie M. Impact of intermittent fasting on health and disease processes. Ageing Res Rev. 2017;39:46-58. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27810402.
  6. 6.
    Patterson R, Laughlin G, LaCroix A, et al. Intermittent Fasting and Human Metabolic Health. J Acad Nutr Diet. 2015;115(8):1203-1212. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25857868.

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