Scientists who work on improving life quality of the people suffering from diabetes have found that those people at risk for developing diabetes could postpone the onset of the disease for 14 years wit diet changes and regular exercise.

A serious of trials showed that lifestyle changes including nutrition and exercises could reduce cases of diabetes in the high-risk group. However, it is still not certain if these benefits would remain over an extended period of time.

Over 500 adults at risk for developing diabetes were randomly assigned to one of three lifestyle intervention groups. One group was put on a diet, a second group had relied on exercise and a third on a combination of these two. There was also a control group that did not participate in any diet or exercise program.

The diet group was encouraged to reduce their portions, cut down on sugar and alcohol and increase intake of vegetables. The exercise group had to regularly engage in physical activities while the third group was supposed to introduce both behaviours. The study began in 1986 and the study participants were to follow the program until 1992. They were then assessed in 2006 to see if there were any long-term effect of diet and exercise.

These lifestyle interventions helped reduce the incidence of diabetes by 51% over the six years of the program. Additionally, over the whole 20-year period, the incidence was reduced by 43 % in those who had been dieting and exercising.

By the 20th year, 80% of those who had participated in a diet and exercise program had developed diabetes in comparison to 93 % of the people from the control group.

However, scientists believe that the study has a couple of important limitations. One of them is that the participants did eventually develop diabetes and that they cannot prove that these lifestyle changes contributed to the survival rates.

Nevertheless, being able to teach people to eat well and be active and in this way protect themselves from diabetes for decades has extraordinary significance.

Another study found that the newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes sufferers could benefit from the early intensive therapy with insulin, which could help them restore the insulin producing cells in the body and restore blood sugar balance.

In comparison to the standard treatment with oral hypoglycemic agents, the early intensive insulin therapy has shown good results with maintaining B-cell function and prolonging glycemic remission.