Sunny and Cherie

I first met Sunny in September 2015 in the Intensive Dietary Management program. Sunny, aged 51 had been diagnosed as a type 2 diabetic since the mid 1990s when he was only in his 30s. He was initially started on the medication Metformin for diabetes. Over the years, he required more and more medications to control his blood sugars. By 2011 he was prescribed insulin. By the time I saw him, he was taking maximal doses of Metformin in addition to injecting 70 units of insulin every day.

Despite this large dose of medication his sugars were still sub-optimally controlled with a haemoglobin A1C of 7.2%. This blood test reflects the three-month average of blood sugars. Optimal control is defined as less than 7.0%, although many physicians recommend getting the A1C to less than 6.5%.

Sunny participated in our IDM program starting October 2nd, 2015. He changed to a diet low in refined carbohydrates and high in natural fats. In addition, we asked him to fast three days a week for 36-42 hours each. If he finished dinner on Day 1, he would not eat again until lunch of Day 3.

His blood sugars improved immediately. In a short two weeks, all of his insulin was discontinued. One month after that, we stopped all his diabetic medications entirely. He has since maintained normal blood sugars without any medications and managed entirely by dietary measures.

Over the Christmas holiday period, he, like many patients in our program did gain weight and his blood sugars did increase slightly. However, with the resumption of his diet and intermittent fasting, his weight and blood sugars reduced and he did not require medications.Fig 16.10 SunnyYang

By March 2016, his weight had stabilized and his body mass index was only 18.5. He did not need any more weight loss, so his fasting regimen was reduced to 24 hours of fasting three times a week as maintenance. Of course, if he had dietary indiscretions or if his blood sugars or weight started to rise, he could easily increase his fasting again as needed.

More importantly, his waist size came down dramatically. The waist size is a good reflection of the fat that is carried around the organs of the abdomen. This more accurately reflects the body’s metabolic state. Measures of waist size such as the waist/hip ratio or waist/ height ratio are considered better predictors of health than simple body weight.

Even more remarkably, his kidney function started to improve. When he started, he was spilling a small amount of protein in his urine. His microalbumin/creatinine ratio was 13.8, well above the normal limit of 2.0. This protein in the urine is the first sign of diabetic damage to the kidney and is often considered irreversible, just as type 2 diabetes itself is considered irreversible. By November, his protein excretion in the urine had fallen to 0.4, well within the normal range where it has remained ever since.

Sunny felt remarkable well throughout his entire journey. He had no difficulty maintaining his low carbohydrate diet or the intermittent fasting protocols. He had been injecting himself twice daily for five years and taking diabetic medications for over twenty years. Now he was free of this dreaded disease in a few short months of the proper diet and the addition of intermittent fasting. His blood sugars now classify him as pre-diabetic, not a full fledged diabetic. His disease had reversed

But that is not the end of the story.

Cherie

In January 2016, Cherie, Sunny’s older sister was astonished at how well her younger brother was doing. His weight was down. His waist size was down. He had stopped all his diabetic medications. He didn’t even find the lifestyle change very difficult. His 20 years of diabetes had been reversed almost overnight. Cherie wanted in.

Cherie was 55 years old and had been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes seven years earlier at age 48. Once again, her story was similar to her brother’s. She had started off with a small dose of a single medication for diabetes. Over the years, her medication pile had slowly grown. She was now taking three medications for diabetes, along with a cholesterol medication, blood pressure medication, and something for heartburn as well.

We discussed her situation and together decided upon a dietary plan for her. She would change to a diet low in refined carbohydrates and high in natural fats. She was a little less sure of how she would feel during fasting, so we decided upon a 24-hour fasting period three times per week. Her diabetes was not as severe as her brother, and she could always increase her fasting if necessary, but to start, she would only do 24 hours at a time.

She started our program in February 2016. Her blood sugars responded immediately. Within two weeks, she had stopped all three of her diabetic medications, as they were no longer necessary. Her blood sugars now consistently measured in the normal range. Her weight began a steady decline, as did her waist size.

Her heartburn disappeared so she stopped her heartburn medication. Her blood pressure normalized, so she stopped her blood pressure medication. Her cholesterol numbers were improved so she stopped her cholesterol medications. Within a single month, she stopped all six of her medications, yet her blood work was better than ever. Her haemoglobin A1C of 6.2% was better than when she was taking all three diabetes medications. She was no longer considered diabetic, only pre-diabetic. This meant that her disease was reversing.

Furthermore, she felt extremely well during this entire process. She did not have any trouble with the fasting protocol. While her fasting period was shorter, she was still getting excellent results so there was no need to change it. She had been taking six medications at the beginning. Now she was on none, and feeling a hundred times better.

This illustrates an important point. Type 2 diabetes is a dietary disease. As such, the only logical treatment is to fix that diet and lifestyle. If the problem is excessive intake of carbohydrates, then reducing carbohydrates is the answer. If the problem is excessive weight, then successful weight loss with fasting is the answer. Once we fix the underlying issue, the disease reverses.

However, we have been brainwashed to believe that type 2 diabetes and all its complications are inevitable. We have been deceived into believing that we can successfully treat a dietary disease with increasing doses of drugs. When the drugs fail to halt the diabetes, we are told that the disease is chronic and progressive.

Sunny had over 20 years of type 2 diabetes, yet managed to successfully reverse his disease within a matter on months. Cherie had seven years of diabetes medications, and also successfully reversed her disease in a few months. But they are not anomalies. Almost every single day that I go into the IDM program, I meet people of all ages who have reversed or are reversing their type 2 diabetes.

2017-10-19T12:33:21+00:00 44 Comments

About the Author:

Dr. Fung is a Toronto based kidney specialist, having graduated from the University of Toronto and finishing his medical specialty at the University of California, Los Angeles in 2001. He is the author of the bestsellers ‘The Obesity Code’ and ‘The Complete Guide to Fasting’. He has pioneered the use of therapeutic fasting for weight loss and type 2 diabetes reversal in his IDM clinic.

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Hudson
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Good for them and good for you Dr. Fung! You’re making a huge difference in so many peoples’ lives!

One recommendation for you – when showing charts like the above if you had inches and pounds included along with cm and kgs, it would be very helpful for your southern neighbors who are metric-challenged!

Chris
Guest

There are online metric to imperial convertors, or your computer has a calculator function (multiply kg by 2.2 and divide cm by 2.54 to get lbs and inches, respectively), or there are free apps which do conversion.

Sue
Guest

Just love everyone of these posts! Question: Has anyone used any supplements along with this dietary program?

Bitter Melon, Banaba Leaf or Berberine etc….. ? They all seem to lower blood sugar but if they are doing what Metformin or other drugs do then it would seem better to stay clear. Any thoughts?

Jin
Guest

Hi Sue, Bitter melon is used in Indian dishes and can be quite tasty. I have had bitter melon juice which is quite dreadful. Eaten as a whole food I can’t see any harm in eating it. My point being, let whole foods be your medicine and let your medicine be whole foods. I have no experience of banaba leaf or berberine.

On my internet travels the most powerful healing protocol bar none is dry fasting. When I fast I just let the body do its thang without interference.

Sue
Guest
Jin, Thank you so very much for your reply. In my ZEAL to help my husband when he was diagnosed I looked for any and all solutions… and I have to say, all of these supplements did make an immediate positive impact on my husband’s blood sugars…. but that was when I thought that was the ONLY goal. Low Blood sugar. Now, he has stopped taking most of them and his sugars are high(er) again. Just gives me pause….. I feel like we’ve been giving him “medicine” all this time disguised as “supplements”. I’d rather do slow and steady and… Read more »
Nancy
Guest
I am a holistic: nutrional counselor and herbalist. Herbs are medicines. God gave us plants, herbs, seeds, and nuts as our medicines. Of course, it is better to eat them in their whole natural state, but many of the herbs are not palatable and are too bitter. In fact, most of the superior herbs for digestive issues are extremely biitter, such as berberine-based herbs. That is because the bitter properties stimulate the liver to produce bile. We use many of these herbs in supplement form, so we can “stomach” them. I advise that you buy the best quality herbal supplements,… Read more »
Jin
Guest

Congratulations Sunny and Cherie on your wonderful accomplishment.

michael
Guest

Since you have treated so many people it would be enlightening to compare your long term results with those of other diets. For example, is the rebound in weight that starts at 6 months in practically every diet study avoided with your approach? Anecdotal evidence is useful and motivating, but I would like to see a thorough statistical comparison.

BobM
Guest
I don’t think rebound is really true. For instance, I had no rebound while on low carb, even after over a year. I think rebound occurs in studies because (1) they design the study this way (to increase carbs over time) or (2) people stop being low in carbs. It’s difficult to be low in carbs when carbs are everywhere. As for my personal experience, after over a year of low carb (about 1.5 years), I’d lost 20-25 pounds. I was, however, eating 5-6 meals a day, and my weight was very slowly edging down. I then determined I was… Read more »
michael
Guest
BobM, I was referring to all diets, low carb and other. If you look at the AtoZ study, for example,, you see weight loss, followed by weight gain, even as the participants further reduced their calories. This is a classic shape that is seen in most studies; Dr. Fung has published similar graphs. Whether this is caused by the type of diet, or lack of compliance does not really matter. If the diet is not sustainable because of the environment, weight loss is not maintained. If weight is regained while still on the on diet, weight loss is not maintained.… Read more »
Sue
Guest

Yes, seeing long term results would be interesting but I think the thing that everyone is missing is the fasting part. This keeps insulin low and keeps your body “thermometer” at a lower set weight. If you fast you will be way more likely to keep the weight off.

BobM
Guest
At 2 months, the Atkins dieters ate 17.7 percent of their 1,381 calories as carbs (61 grams per day). At 6 months, they were eating 29.5% of their 1538 calories as carbs (113 grams/day). At 12 months, they were eating 34.5% of their 1599 calories as carbs (138 grams/day). See table 2, http://jama.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=205916. The original goal: “The Atkins group aimed for 20 g/d or less of carbohydrate for “induction” (usually 2-3 months) and 50 g/d or less of carbohydrate for the subsequent “ongoing weight loss” phase.” See the cited text. These people never really did Atkins. The Atkins diet did… Read more »
Jin
Guest
Hi BobM, You may recall before the eighties obesity was not that much of a problem. Nobody ever heard of HFLC until the noughties, nobody even talked about low fat then. Nobody was counting fat grams or carb grams or protein grams. Obesity was not that prevalent, very few people thought that much about their diet. If I can borrow an analogy from the climate change crowd, the “hockey stick effect” of obesity began in the early eighties. Something happened and it was not people suddenly switching from HFLC to more carbs. It is not that people are failing their… Read more »
michael
Guest
If people can not stick to the diet because it requires will power, or because of societal pressures, the diet is not useful, no matter how helpful it would be otherwise. Similarly, maybe fasting makes everyone in the world lose weight, but if people, for whatever reason, find that they can not continue to fast regularly, the diet is still not useful. When you say ” The Atkins diet did not fail — the people did” you continue to blame the dieter for having no will power when there are no clinical trial examples of diets where people succeed in… Read more »
sten bjorsell
Guest
From what I have learnt from Dr Fung and experienced, most diets do not work. Except ketogenic diet, but the weight loss only last for a few months, at least for older people like me. Fasting is however completely different as it is able to apparently completely reset insulin resistance! At least when done in minimum 24 hr periods with only water (lemon squirted in for taste or boiled and cooled). Jan 2012 I went on strict LCHF (ketogenic diet) and by same July I had lost 5-6 kgs, and there it stopped, until I started intermittent fasting over 3… Read more »
mike
Guest
I have been doing Atkins as it was meant to be and i plateaued, stopped, halted ,stalled at 275 lbs. From a high of 328. I can say without hesitation that without finding Dr. Fung through ButterBobBriggs youtube program where he mentions intermittant fasting I would still be at 275 now less than two weeks later I have lost about 3lbs on 24 hour fasts. All, and I mean all of the things that Dr. Fung mentions in his book, which i bought and read, his various presentations to audience both professional and laypeople and his blog have been “right… Read more »
David
Guest

Dr. Alan Goldhammer’s follow-up shows that weight actually dropped further in his participants after they left his water-only fasting clinic. I think it was published in 2001.

The guy in the 1970s who lost 282 lbs in 372 days was followed-up five years later. He had only regained 16 lbs. I wonder what he looks like now, if he lived a long life for that matter, etc.

michael
Guest
David, This is interesting. Thanks for pointing me to Goldhamer. I wonder if you can find the publication you are referring to. I wasn’t able to get the full text of the most likely publication containing those results (Initial Cost of Care Results in Medically Supervised Water-Only Fasting for Treating High Blood Pressure and Diabetes). I also find it interesting that Goldhamer is a fasting pioneer, while also appearing to be and fat consumption (and possibly pro-vegan) and having worked with T Colin Campbell. It reminds me that even though someone might have some good or bad ideas, not all… Read more »
David
Guest

Michael, there’s no way to reply to your post, only to mine, I’m not sure why.

Look in “Supervised Water-Only Fasting for Treating High Blood Pressure and Diabetes”, I also know that Alan Goldhammer has a follow-up study coming up, maybe it’s already published I’m not sure. I was talking about a paper from the early 2000s.

I think goldhammer is wrong about veganism, but it’s all right, nobody’s perfect. The case against veganism is not trivial so it’s a respectable position even if I disagree.

honeycomb
Guest

I love a happy ending .. and who doesn’t?!?!?

Very good news .. and now they know the secret to a healthy life .. bonus points.

Jillm
Guest

Thank you Dr Fung for your interesting article. In our local newspaper, Philip Rule, aged 50, warned other suffers to take their diagnosis seriously. He was diagnosed type two at the age of 40. Now, 10 years later, he is recovering from 12 leg surgeries in 30 days. I wonder what treatment was prescribed for him when he was first diagnosed.

Alex
Guest
Hi Dr Fung. Just a bit of information on myself. Your blogs and personal help have made my diabetes so much better and also the 4 inches of my waist. July 2015 Hbc1 59> June 2016 Hbc1 46 Weight: 103 down to 97 Cholesterol: 10.7 down to 5.9 I was just diagnosed as diabetic and as probably everyone does panicked. I watched some of your “you tube” presentations and contacted you you about some problems, with your help and following your simple rules. You can see the results. I still have some way to go, but diabetes can come back,… Read more »
honeycomb
Guest

Bravo Alex

Keep doing the work and you’ll be shocked at how “normal” people respond to you. All the while you are proving your point. It does work. It is healthy. It is a great lifestyle change from what “normal” people do.

Don’t let “normal” people discourage you during your journey.

Just remember .. You have to live like no one else .. to live like no one else .. we’re pulling for ya’.

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Jyothi
Guest
Dear Dr. Jason Fung, I am impressed with the studies on and results of Jason and Cherie. I live in India, and am a lactovegetarian. Could I try the above mentioned changes in my diet vix 24-hour fasting???? I am hypothyroid and a prediabetic with a BMI of 29. I have the following questions. 1. 24-hour fasting period: I can drink water during this period. Anything else?? like Green tea? buttermilk, etc of only water? 2. Low-carb High fat diet the rest of the days: What should be the carb, fat, protein ratio for the daily diet? What should be… Read more »
stefanielaine
Guest

Hi Jyothi – come join us at Reddit.com/r/fasting and we’ll answer all of your questions! There are dozens of us there using Dr Fung’s protocol 🙂

Ann
Guest
@ @sten bjorsell “then started out on a two day fast, which became a 5 day fast, mainly due to the positive effects I saw during day two. Then weight dropped from 92 to 83 kgs in 3 such weeks (5 days fasting, 2 days normal, but few carbs eating ). It ended a month ago, and if I eat lunch and dinner now and go over 84 kgs of weight I am roasting at night, again as when I was young!” How did you re-feed after 2 to 5 days of fasting? What did you eat, how many meals… Read more »
sten bjorsell
Guest
After the first 5-day fast I ate as normal which was a mistake! I awoke in the middle of the night with stomach pains that eventually settled out with lukewarm boiled water. Same I used to use against angina chest pains. Then I read up more and found – also on this blog – that bone broth is very few calories but lots of minerals and electrolytes, and that my problem likely was an electrolyte imbalance. The next two 5 week periods I started with well salted bone broth evening day 3, and increased some on day 4, and on… Read more »
Ann
Guest

@Sten,
Thanks for the response. I am glad you are doing well!

What do you eat for the first meal after the fast at dinnertime?

What do you make your bone broth from?

Also do you have a particular brand of sea salt that you will use? Even sea salt is mostly sodium chloride and has very low quantities of other minerals.

sten bjorsell
Guest
Hi Ann, whatever is going for breaking the fast, nothing special. Bone broth was last made from beef bones cut down to about 4 ” long. They were from grass fed & finished beef. Add a bit of vinegar or lemon juice and some vegetables, bay leaves, spices, pepper allspice and salt. The salt is best “unrefined”, type that they use in France all the time that is gray, not white. (Sel Gris) There is also lots of magnesium in unrefined salt, which means it absorbs moisture from air and gets moist and wont spread from a salter. Convenience in… Read more »
Ann
Guest

Thanks for the info!

moises
Guest

Your comments have been very helpful, sten! Thank you.

Sue
Guest
As I read through many of Dr. Fung’s blogs and subsequent responses from readers I’m often amazed at how some people complain that this is too hard, or won’t work if you can’t stick to it. But is there anything in life worth having that doesn’t take sacrifice and stick to-it-ness on some level? What Dr. Fung has provided us is a way to lose weight/keep it off, reverse diabetes and achieve over-all good health. We are doing LCHF with IF. It works. Do I have moments where I miss how I used to eat? YES! But in that exact… Read more »
Al
Guest

Nice one Sue! Changing your diet/lifestyle is the key to a healthier life, while sticking to your comfort zone is the other way to getting sick… Hippocrates stated “Let food be thy medicine…”, likewise he stated:

“A wise man should consider that health is the greatest of human blessings, and learn how by his own thought to derive benefit from his illnesses.”

WRSH
Guest
I am on the LCHF with IF also and have lost 10 pounds since the first week in March. I’ve quit my T2 diabetic meds and my sugar is staying well below 200 now. Today it was 137. I’m glad you mentioned that your RLS went away because I’ve been wondering about that and you’re the first to mention it. I’m on three different meds for restless legs and they do seem to be slowly getting better. I did have problems every night but the last two or three nights I haven’t had any problems. Still on meds though until… Read more »
maha
Guest

someone give clear guideline about dr.fung treatment?where i get those details ?pls reply

Liz
Guest

Start with his book The Obesity Code, available at Amazon.

Aleena
Guest
Dear Dr. Fung, I found out I have high fbg in 2006 but I choose to ignore it. I was in denial. Soon my mmol readings reached 21/mmol. I did a blood test in 2013, my HBA1C 9.8% and cholesterol 6.4mmol/L. I take metformin mainly to suppress my appetite and I’ve tried a few diets. None worked. I came across your talks on YouTube a few months back and I began to understand how diabetes works. You see my dad has it… my brothers have it… I have it… yes I feel like Luke Skywalker… but I refuse to believe… Read more »
Bo
Guest

Did i miss something or does Sunny wear a size 0 in American women’s clothing, he sure is tiny and was tiny to start with.
All conversion charts say his starting waist size (61 cm) is an extra small in women’s clothing.

Mike
Guest

His starting waist size was 89cm, not 61cm. His starting weight was 61kg.

Bo
Guest

61 kg = 134 pounds

61 Kilograms (kg)

=

134.48198 Pounds (lb)

Polly
Guest
Dear Dr Fung my Son aged 29 years who apparently does NOT have Diabetes has been diagnosed with CKD after presenting with pain in his back. Derby hospital performed biopsy and gave steriods. His kidney function was 40% in December and is now at 34%. Hospital is now talking about his dialysis choices. My Son is extremely fit mountainbike and 4 X racer just returned from the World Cup Series. My question in desperation to you is can LCHF and fasting help to cure the disease and having to start dialysing? Any information you can offer would be most gratefully… Read more »
Darrell from Indiana
Guest

Thank you so much for your knowledge, dedication, and compassion. I’ve watched a few of your videos, and read many of your blog pages in the last 24 hrs of discovering you. You’re amazing! I’m not diabetic but I am 80 pounds overweight. I’m starting a fast today!

wg
Guest

Doctor Fung: You post so many results that would seem miraculous. I can’t find any record of published results in the medical literature.

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