Article Text

Unexpected outcome (positive or negative) including adverse drug reactions
Improvement of glycaemic control and elevation of C-peptide following a diet free of dairy products in an insulin-treated, patient with type 2 diabetes with ulcerative colitis
  1. Howard Tandeter
  1. Ben-Gurion University, Family Medicine, PO Box 653, Beer-Sheva, 84105, Israel
  1. howard{at}


An insulin-treated patient with type 2 diabetes mellitus started a diet free of dairy products. Unexpectedly, she developed episodes of hypoglycaemia, without any change in her usual medication (insulin NPH at bedtime and Metformin). Laboratory tests showed an improvement of endogenous insulin secretion as demonstrated by the induction of hypoglycaemia and the elevation to normalisation of C-peptide levels. The patient was rechallenged with dairy products, leading to the lowering of the C-peptide levels back to abnormal levels, and an increase in HBA1C levels. The findings in our patient contrast with the insulinotropic effect of milk in healthy subjects described in the literature. The two main “milk debates” on the relation between milk (or its components) and diabetes are presented. Further observations will be needed to clarify the question of whether a diet free of dairy products can improve glycaemic control in other insulin-treated patients with type 2 diabetes.

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  • Competing interests: none.

  • Patient consent: Patient/guardian consent was obtained for publication