Drew Carey loses 80 pounds and cures Type 2 diabetes with low carb diet

Comedian and The Price is Right host Drew Carey, 52, told People Magazine that “It sucks being fat” and having Type-2 diabetes. Using a “no carb” diet and 45 minutes of cardio exercise per day, Mr. Carey lost 80 pounds and went from a size 44 waist to a 33-34-inch waist. It reportedly took Drew about 6 months to achieve the goals of both weight reduction and the reversal of his diabetes, which is a disease of carbohydrate metabolism characterized by abnormally high levels of the hormone insulin.

Many Hollywood celebrities, including Beyonce Knowles, Heidi Klum and Simon Cowell, Fergie and Whitney Port, use low carbohydrate strategies to control their weight. And this may actually be medically preferable to the low-fat, semi-starvation diets that have obsessed Americans for the past 30 years. Science writer Gary Taubes, and others, have argued that such diets were always based on faulty and incomplete research and ill-considered government policies that actually led to the epidemic of diabetes, obesity and heart disease that currently affects a frighteningly large percentage of the U.S. population.

We have read an advance copy of Mr. Taubes’ new book, Why We Get Fat, and it should be required reading for everyone who cares about diet and health. While you’re waiting for the book to come out, check out his June 2009 Grand Rounds at Dartmouth Medical School and also his debate with Dr. Dean Ornish, moderated by Dr. Mehmet Oz. Dr. Andrew Weil has endorsed Mr. Taubes’ findings and recommendations which are at odds with widely-held beliefs, among both the public and the medical profession, about the healthfulness of low fat, low calorie diets and exercise.

Mark Boguski, M.D., Ph.D. is on the faculty of Harvard Medical School and is a member of the Society for Participatory Medicine, "a movement in which networked patients shift from being mere passengers to responsible drivers of their health" and in which professional health care providers encourage "empowered patients" and value them as full partners in managing their health and wellness.

4 Comments

  1. Northerner

    July 30, 2010 at 4:41 am

    Drew’s weight loss is great. He’s not ‘cured’ of diabetes, however – no such cure exists as yet, he is managing his condition with diet and exercise. If he ate a tub of ice cream his blood glucose levels would rocket. Also, diabetes is not ‘characterized by abnormally large amounts’ of insulin – the opposite is the case. My pancreas produces no insulin, so I have to inject. Type 2 diabetes is caused by insulin insufficiency or insulin resistance. Too much insulin and you go into a coma and die!

    • Dr B

      July 30, 2010 at 8:05 am

      Thanks for your comment. Sometimes we have to over-simplify our explanations, but I think we do this a lot less than other consumer-oriented medical stories. Type 1 diabetes is due to a lack of insulin; Type 2 diabetes is due to “resistance” of our bodies’ cells to normal amounts of this hormone and so our pancreas makes more and more of it, at least initially. Typically, however, only blood sugar not insulin is measured by your doctor. Perhaps we overstated that Mr. Carey was “cured,” but the fact that he no longer has to take medication for this condition might be considered a “cure.” But, as you wisely pointed out, if he or any patient reverts to the dietary and metabolic conditions that led to his diabetes in the first place, the disease can and probably will recur.

      It’s important to note that, for any of our “celebrity diagnoses,” we do not have (nor do we seek) access to anyone’s medical records which would not only be a violation of their privacy and our ethics, but is also a violation of Federal HIPAA laws. Therefore, any comments we make about medical conditions are based on general medical knowledge about that disease or condition and may or may not be relevant to a particular patient. If our readers have any concerns or questions about how our stories may relate to their personal medical conditions, they should consult their professional healthcare provider. As is stated in our Terms of Service, our web-site is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for advice from your doctor. It should not to be used for self-diagnosis or treatment.

    • Kaylie

      November 13, 2011 at 7:56 am

      Whoever edits and plbuihses these articles really knows what they’re doing.

  2. Tara Pfefferkorn

    July 30, 2010 at 10:25 pm

    My brother and I were just debating your very topic, he’s continually trying to prove me completely wrong. Your own view on this is wonderful and just how I really feel. I just now e-mailed my brother this site to show him your current perspective. After overlooking your blog I bookmarked and will be coming back to read your posts!

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