Voices of Veganism

How I Cured Myself of Type 2 Diabetes

by Carlos
Follow me:

I was born in 1955 on an island in the middle of the Atlantic in the Azores, a beautiful archipelago of nine islands that is part of the Portuguese government. Life on the island was very quiet and isolated from the rest of the world. Our diet consisted of grains, legumes, vegetables, fish and pork. When I turned 13 my parents decided to come of the US to give me a better life and opportunities that I did not have on the Island.

Life in the US was definitely very different than life on the islands, meat and processed foods were abundant and we now could have red meat every day. Back on the island we only had red meat as a celebration, specifically a catholic feast only held a few times a year. Diabetes was predominant on my mother’s side of the family, most had this affliction much later on in life.

As I turned 49 years old during a visit with my doctor he told me that my sugars were high and that I needed to control my diet. Not knowing what he meant, since he did not explain it, I felt that I would cut out the donuts and things would get better. I had gone from 125lbs when in my 20’s to 165lbs. Four months later, December 23rd 2004 my doctor decided that I was not controlling my diet properly (I guess the cutting out the donuts didn’t help) and he diagnosed me as a type 2 diabetic, plus some other ailments such as a fatty liver, enlarged prostate, etc. He prescribed Metformin to be taken two times per day. My question to him was, “What can I do to educate myself about Diabetes in order to better control it?” He told me of a program at a nearby hospital funded by insurance companies and run by dieticians. I enrolled in the program. It was educational, they encouraged eating more protein to lower high sugars, they also encouraged more exercise and eating less white flour, etc, etc.

After following this regimen I visited my doctor. I always had a blood test prior to my visits to discuss my progress during the visit. My A1C was up and he prescribed more medication, Avandia twice daily and Lipitor to lower my Cholesterol. Needless to say this did not make me happy. I hated taking pills and I started to look into curing myself, including scanning the web for solutions, I found a few doctors promoting their supplements such as Dr. Mercola but nothing worked. The search continued into 2007, I was reading books such as “The Secret”, “The Law of Attraction”, etc. One day at work I was telling someone that I had finally made up my mind and my goal in life was to find a cure for type 2 Diabetes. I did not accept this disease.

A few days later, at the end of August 2007 on my way to work, listening to XM radio, I tuned to the Oprah station and Dr. Oz was interviewing Dr. Neal Barnard. Dr. Barnard was promoting his book “Dr. Neal Barnard’s Program for Reversing Diabetes”. It caught my interest and I turned up the volume. He was talking about this Vegan thing as a way to reverse Diabetes. What he was describing made sense to me. The most important thing was that he was not promoting a product. As a matter of fact, he disclosed the secret. I got to work very excited and told my colleague that I had found the cure.

This happened on a Friday and I devoted my weekend to researching this Vegan diet, what I found out was not good, giving up all animal products. Wow, what would I eat?

I made a commitment to try this Vegan diet for 4 months. It started to work almost immediately. My sugars started to drop, my energy levels were thru the roof, my weight was down, I felt great, and I started to eliminate my medications one pill at a time. By November I was living without medications and decided to make an appointment with my doctor. It happened to be in January 2008. As always, I went for the blood test first. A week before my appointment I received the test results… my A1C had gone from a 6.5 with medications to 4.9 without, and my cholesterol was down from over 220 to 146. This was the first time that I could not wait to see the doctor.

My appointment day finally came; I sat nervously waiting for my doctor to walk in. He walked in, checked the chart, compared it to previous pages, and turned to me and said “This is incredible control!” I said “Yes Doctor, especially when I no longer take medications”. He reached back to find the stool. I think his legs were buckling and he said “What is it that you are doing?” I told him that I was a Vegan. He thought that it was fantastic and reminded me that this was adding years to my life. I told him how I liked adding years in the middle not the end. I suggested he tell his Diabetes patients, he said that it was too extreme and they would not do it. I continued to see him another couple of visits and all my other numbers were continuing to improve also.

It has been the best three and half years of my life I am celebrating my 56th birthday in two months, I now weigh 130lbs and I feel more energetic than I can ever remember. I have become a passionate promoter of eating a whole foods plant based diet. I love being a Vegan.

  • DMH1

    Carlos, Congratulations for successfully taking charge of your own health. It is very unfortunate for patients to hear responses, like the one from your doctor, over and over again. Rather than assume people would not participate in a vegan regimen because it is ‘too extreme’, they should at least give their patients the opportunity to make informed decisions for themselves. When diabetics attempt the ADA dietary changes they find that their condition does not improve. They then give up on the possibility that there may be a dietary solution to controlling/curing this disease. Thank you for sharing your story and hopefully there will be many diabetics who will be helped by following your path.

  • dazzle59

    Carlos, thank you for the inspiring testimonial!

  • Virginia

    Yes, doctors should at least give patients the full range of information! Just because “they” don’t want to attempt a vegan diet, doesn’t mean others feel the same. Especially when your health is at risk.

    Most doctors are trained to give meds and perform surgery and keep their patients “coming back”.

    From a vegan of seven years in Houston! No health problems initiated my interest, just a healthier way of living for myself, the environment and the animals. I have never looked back.

  • cyclingmarge

    Carlos, fantatsic! good for you! How sad that you doctor like a lot of doctor’s don’t want to tell their patients the cold , hard, truth. Just keep taking medicines.

  • http://homespunheritage.blogspot.com/ ~*Jolene*~

    Wow I have to tell you this is exactly what I need to hear! I’ve had high cholesterol since I was 19! I was young, fit and active but not eating right and obviously my liver was screaming! I was on insulin in my 20′s, a stroke in my later 20′s and now at almost 32 its time to turn this train around before it crashes! I can’t wait to see what this does for my life!

  • Pbeach

    How is being vegan “too extreme” while taking pills and dying early from diabetes OK? Go vegan people!!!

  • Tanteaase

    You’re tellng my story.. I also cured myself from Diabetes II by becoming a raw vegan. When I started in September 2010 I was very scared because of all the sweet fruit I was consuming every day but my blood sugar dropped and dropped. Today I know that it is animal proteins that caused my blood sugar to rice and not the fruit sugar in fresh fruit.
    Warm greetings from Norway

  • Schakrab


    I am 60 years old. I read Dr. Bernard’s book and within two months I see the results. For nearly five years my family physician just could not give the advice what Dr. Bernard gave and instead my doctor increased the dosage of Metmorfin. These doctors either don’t have the knowledge or they don’t want you literally to get off the medicine so that you keep on visiting them. After having lived in this country for 24 years, I am certain about one doctrine that pervades every cross section of the society – GREED for money. Dr. Bernard is an exception. His dieting advice absolutely works and I convey my deepest respect for his invaluable advice.

  • Anon

    I have heard from a relative who has reversed his T-2 Diabetes by just changing the diet habit. He mentioned that he was not alone but he has lot of people who have reversed it.This diet follows like this: Breakfast – Absolutely no food. Lunch – Eat only raw Fruit and Vegetables (not cooked, boiled or rosted). Dinner – Whatever vegetarian meal you fancy. Follow this for 2 months and it should work, Then you may return to normal and sensible vegetarian diet T-2 Diabetes will stay away. It goes without saying that you keep up with your normal blood tests and doctors visits during this diet change.

    • Anonymous


  • ray

    I cured my diabetes 2.
    This is confirmed by my doctor.
    My blood sugar is now reduced to 5.4 (above 6.1 is insulin insensitive = diabetes2)

    How did I do it.

    1. Stop eating all foods with hydrogenated fat (also known as trans fats). It is man-made.
    2. Get your fat from a fist of walnuts per day.
    3. Eat the walnuts for 7 months to replace the man-made fat in your cell walls with natural fat.

    Hydrogenated fat is modified fat which has an extra hydrogen atom added to it, to prolong food shelf life.
    However, you insulin expects “natural fat” around every cell in your body for the past 4M years – evolution!
    So Insulin is “confused” by the new molecular structure of the fat membrane around you cells.
    By replacing the “man-made” fat by natural fat (from walnuts) over 7 months you insulin works as intended , opens the cell wall and lets the sugar in to be consumed as energy. Done.

    New York state will probably ban all food with hydrogenated fat this year 2012.  (They were first to ban smoking!)

    Caution: Manufacturers have negotiated agreement with the food authorities to NOT show hydrogenated fat on packaging if it is less than 0.05%. So beware and dont eat any food that has long shelf life (snacks, cookies, etc) including the oil used for fries in your local fast food outlet.

    For how insulin works see http://www.khanacademy.org/science/healthcare-and-medicine/v/glucose-insulin-and-diabetes

    I am an engineer, not a medical person, so I bring a different discipline and training to problem solving.

This section of The Vegan Voice is dedicated to your testimonials We all have a story about how or why we became vegan and often about how veganism has enriched or changed our life. If you'd like to share your story please send us a personal essay - with a photo and links if you like. It may be as long or short as you choose. This is your platform. Shine on vegans!
Send your story to