Diabetes is a common health concern, affecting 1 in every 11 adults worldwide. Dietary changes have been associated with changes in blood sugar levels. This study aims to determine the safety and efficacy of low and very low carbohydrate diets (LCDs and VLCDs) for people with type-2 diabetes.

This systematic review and meta-analysis included randomized clinical trials evaluating the effect of LCDs and VLCDs in adults with type-2 diabetes. The primary outcomes of the study were remission of diabetes, weight loss, fasting glucose, and adverse events. The secondary outcomes of the study were health-related quality of life and biochemical laboratory data.

A total of 23 trials involving 1,357 participants were included in the study. At six months, LCDs achieved higher rates of diabetes remission compared with control diets. On the other hand, smaller and non-significant effect sizes occurred when a remission definition of less than 6.5% was used. Subgroup assessments showed that VLCDs were less effective than less restrictive LCDs for weight loss at six months. Participants did not experience any significant difference in the quality of life at six months.

The research concluded that the intake of LCDs was associated with remission of diabetes and weight loss at 6 months without any adverse consequences.

Ref: https://www.bmj.com/content/372/bmj.m4743