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Blood glucose responses play a crucial role in maintaining good health, and any abnormalities in glucose regulation can lead to several chronic conditions. Diabetes is one such disease that results from a lack of insulin production or the body’s inability to use insulin effectively, leading to elevated blood glucose levels.
There has been debate about what exactly constitues a “healthy” and “unhealthy” blood glucose response. While it is suggested that unhealthy blood glucose responses are characterized by erratic and unpredictable “spikes” in blood glucose levels, sometimes vague terminology leads to people worrying about normal blood glucose responses. This may be particularly related to the increasing prevalence of continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) devices that allow individuals to track their glucose levels in real-time. While these devices can be helpful for people with diabetes to manage their glucose levels, they can also lead to unnecessary concern and anxiety about small, normal glucose elevations.
In recent years exciting advances have been made in diabetes remission research. And off the back of that, more research has looked at various dietary interventions that could either directly impact remission, or act as an adjuct to other interventions.
In this discussion with Dr. Nicola Guess, we discuss a range of topics related to glycemia, diabetes, and diet. This includes the potential for high-protein interventions, what utility CGMs actually have, what to make of diabetes remission trials, and future directions for the field.
Nicola Guess, PhD, MPH, RD
Dr. Nicola Guess is a dietitian and the research programme manager for type 2 diabetes remission at the University of Oxford. And she is currently a member of the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) expert committee.
Her research interests are on the effect of diet on the prevention and management of type 2 diabetes. But she also has a strong interest in looking at sustainable diets, plant-based diets, dietary fibre, and weight-independent approaches to health.
Dr. Guess was previously an assistant professor at King’s College London, and Head of Nutrition at the Dasman Diabetes Institute in Kuwait.
She completed her clinical dietetic training at the University of Houston, and holds a Masters in Public Health from Florida International University and a PhD from Imperial College London.
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