US dietary guidelines recommend low carb approach for people with diabetes

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The benefits of eating low carb have been recognised in the official dietary guidelines of the American Diabetes Association (ADA).
The 2019 ADA’s Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes document states that nutrition should be personalised to the individual with nutrient-dense foods, notably vegetables, prioritised within a healthy lifestyle.
The guidance also addresses how eating low carb could improve blood glucose levels and reduce the need for blood glucose-lowering medication.
The inclusion of a low carb approach in the ADA’s guidelines is a significant moment in diabetes and modern healthcare.
The decision acknowledges the excellent results people with type 2 diabetes have been able to achieve on low carb, including remission from type 2 diabetes, and builds on the publication of a joint-statement earlier this year from the ADA and the European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD) which prioritised lifestyle management for treating type 2 diabetes rather than medication.
The ADA’s new document has been developed to help clinicians, patients and researchers determine the best approach to diabetes care, treatment goals, and tools to evaluate the quality of care.
The recommendations include screening, diagnostic, and therapeutic actions that have shown to positively affect the health outcomes of those with diabetes.
The ADA has been actively involved in the development of diabetes care standards for the last 25 years. The organisation’s guidance is seen as vital to help healthcare professionals provide the best possible diabetes care.
The guidelines are regularly updated by the ADA’s Professional Practice Committee which carries out extensive work ensuring that new evidence or regulatory changes are included.
The guidance can be viewed online in the journal Diabetes Care.
Editor’s note: Our award-winning Low Carb Program has attracted more than 326,000 people since its launch in 2015. The evidence-based structured behavioural change programme was developed to support those with type 2 diabetes, and has helped thousands of people improve their health.