The low-carb lifestyle is good medicine for diabetes and obesity
I visited Duke University’s Lifestyle Medicine Clinic in Durham, North Carolina, where they are successfully treating type 2 diabetes with lifestyle changes, while helping patients eliminate or reduce their diabetes medications. Their program includes following a carbohydrate-restricted, ketogenic diet as well as offering support for stress management and other lifestyle issues which prevent blood sugar control and reaching a healthy weight.
I became aware of “lifestyle medicine” only recently when I became an investor in HEAL Clinics, which is seeking to expand the availability of lifestyle medicine to more people, by opening more medical clinics that will follow this lifestyle medicine approach. Dr. Eric Westman, the director of the Duke Clinic, invited me to attend a class where he teaches the basics of the low-carb diet to his new patients.
I was very impressed at the way Dr. Westman presents the information in the class. He is clear, friendly and approachable. This is so important! So many of us have had too many doctors who are too busy to answer our questions or explain things we don’t understand. They just want to write prescriptions and get on to the next patient.
Dr. Westman engaged the clinic patients attending the class by starting group discussions to keep everybody involved in active learning. He had two class handouts, one of which was a collection of recipes for use at home. The other one was a concise description of the diet, which he went through paragraph by paragraph to make sure everybody understood each element of the plan.
This diet is actually VERY SIMPLE to understand: If it’s on page four, you can have it. If it’s not on page four, you can’t. If you want to have some fun, google some form of “westman diet page 4” and see what comes up.
There are further tweaks for those who don’t lose weight on this simplified version. But the beginner starts here. I love it. I love that there are no unnecessary obstacles in the way of success. People who can’t afford pricier foods can do just fine on less expensive choices. You can cook your food any way you want. In the microwave or pan-fried in real butter. The plan is intended to be as easy as possible to follow, without restrictions about fast food, restaurants or buying specific brands or products.
When you are hungry, eat from page 4 until you feel full.
When you are thirsty, drink water (best) or a non-caloric beverage.
Dr. Westman ended the class by inviting everybody to attend the monthly support group meeting, and then going to each person around the table to talk individually about any medications they are on and any concerns they have about starting the diet. He asked each person about their stress levels and how they deal with stress.
Dr. Eric Westman is the Director of the Duke Lifestyle Medicine Clinic, and an Associate Professor of Medicine at Duke University. He is also the President and Clinical Director of HEAL Clinics
This post is continued: Go to part two
Here’s a 40-minute video presentation of a previously recorded class like the one I attended:
Books by Dr. Eric Westman
HEAL Diabetes Clinics is looking for investors.
Get more information here.