Low carbohydrate diets are more effective than low fat diets in controlling blood sugar in Type 2 diabetics. Additional benefits include weight loss and less dependence on hypoglycemic meds.
Researchers from Leiden University conducted a meta-analysis of 36 studies, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Their finding is that low carb diets are best for Type 2 diabetics. Benefits increase in proportion to the restriction of carbohydrates.
A typical study is the one chaired by Laura Saslow, MD, from the University of Michigan, which included team members from Diabetes.co UK. The program followed randomly selected participants for one year, offering them a ten-module learning/eating program. Of the almost 800 participants with a starting HbA1c of 47.5 mmol/mol (6.5%) or above, 26% lowered their HbA1c while taking no glucose-lowering medication (or just metformin). Of those participants taking one or more diabetes medications, 40% reduced their intake of meds. Almost every participant lost 5% of his or her weight, those with highest Hb1Aic losing the most.
The low carb diet also has great promise for pre-diabetics.