UK researchers have conducted a review into type 2 diabetes drugs and their benefits for reducing mortality and cardiovascular events.
Not all people with type 2 diabetes require medication, and our Low Carb Program has helped thousands with type 2 diabetes to come off medication, but it is sometimes prescribed for people with poor glucose control.
Researchers from the Imperial College Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust in London found that SGLT2 inhibitors and GLP-1 agonists outperformed DDP-4 inhibitors and placebo for mortality.
The use of DDP-4 inhibitors was not significantly associated with lower mortality when compared to placebo or no treatment.
The research team looked at results of multiple studies involving more than 176,000 people that had used all three classes of drugs. Their findings were based on the overall association between the medications and the different outcomes they had on all the participants.
Each drug works in a slightly different way. SGLT2 inhibitors are taken orally and help the kidneys to function better at lowering blood glucose levels. GLP-1 agonists are injectable and normally given to people who have not been able to control their blood sugar by taking tablets. DDP-4 inhibitors are also oral and help to slow appetite; they are normally prescribed to people who do not respond well to metformin or sulphonylureas.
SGLT2 inhibitors and GLP-1 agonists were also significantly associated with lower cardiovascular mortality, although GLP-1 agonists were associated with a higher risk of adverse events leading to trial withdrawal compared with SGLT2 inhibitors and DPP-4 inhibitors.
The researchers noted that “excess mortality and cardiovascular morbidity remain a considerable challenge for healthcare systems”.
The findings have been published in JAMA Network.
Editor’s note: While many still believe type 2 diabetes is a chronic disease that requires more and more medication, people with prediabetes or type 2 diabetes who eat a healthy diet low in carbs and sugar and high in healthy fats are finding that they can avoid or come off medication altogether, putting their condition into remission.

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