Remedies Worse Than the Disease

Filed Under: Diabetes, Blood Sugar

For years, doctors have known the potential dangers of oral hypoglycemic drugs. But for whatever reason, they continue to prescribe them to patients dealing with diabetes. So my question is this: When are we going to learn—rather, when are we going to accept—that oral medications used to treat type 2 diabetes actually do more harm than good?

In February 2008, researchers heading a large, government-funded trial made a sobering announcement. The study in question, Action to Control Cardiovascular Risk in Diabetes (ACCORD), was designed to evaluate the effectiveness of various medication regimens in reducing heart attacks, strokes, and death from cardiovascular disease in patients with type 2 diabetes.

One arm of the study tested the widely held assumption that using more aggressive methods to lower blood sugar would provide greater protection against heart disease. Instead, ACCORD found just the opposite. Study participants on the most intensive drug regimens aimed at driving blood sugar way down had a much higher cardiovascular death rate. “Intensive blood sugar lowering treatment” proved to be so harmful that the researchers halted this arm of the study 18 months early to prevent this aggressive drug use from killing even more people.

“Those Who Cannot Remember The Past…”

Medical experts were reportedly “shocked,” “stunned,” and “startled” by this “unexpected” finding. Folks, this is nonsense. We’ve known about the fatal complications of diabetes drugs since 1969, when results of a similar study called the University Group Diabetes Program were made public. The goal of this placebo-controlled study of patients with type 2 diabetes was to see if either of two oral diabetes drugs lowered the incidence of heart attacks and other cardiovascular complications.

Incredibly, just like ACCORD, the study had to be stopped two years early because participants who were taking the drugs had a 250 to 300 percent higher death rate than those taking the placebo.

Philosopher George Santayana said more than a century ago, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” Well, modern medicine has a terrible habit of forgetting—or ignoring—the past. And patients are condemned to pay for this folly.

: If you are currently taking an oral hypoglycemic drug, don’t stop taking it. You must work with your doctor to determine if you can gradually discontinue the medication. Ask him/her to help you implement a program of weight loss, lifestyle changes, and other natural remedies for diabetes. Check this blog frequently, do your own research, and talk with your doctor to determine that you’re getting the care that’s best for you.

DISCLAIMER: The content of is offered on an informational basis only, and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the guidance of a qualified health provider before making any adjustment to a medication or treatment you are currently using, and/or starting any new medication or treatment. All recommendations are "generally informational" and not specifically applicable to any individual's medical problems, concerns and/or needs.

Enjoy What You've Just Read?

Get it delivered to your inbox! Signup for E-News and you'll get great content like you've just read along with other great tips and guides from Dr. Whitaker!

Related Articles & Categories