In a recent webinar with Dr. Christopher Drake, I asked him whether the Buteyko Method could reverse type-1 diabetes. Dr. Drake, according to his organization’s website, was the “first ‘Western’ practitioner to receive diploma accreditation from Professor Buteyko.” The Buteyko Method has been demonstrated to improve tissue oxygen levels and blood circulation. These biological changes have been shown to reverse many chronic diseases. Some say it can reverse type-1 diabetes.
“No, it’s type-2 that is reversible,” Drake replied from his office in Thailand. “In type-1 there is either no pancreas or a dysfunctional pancreas – which means they are not producing insulin at all… you can’t fix it, because there is nothing there to fix almost.”
Not exactly the response I hoped for. One could say the same about thyroid failure. Nicole had no thyroid hormone appearing on her lab tests. Was there then nothing to improve? But once repaired her T4, T3 and TSH returned to normal levels.
“However,” continued Drake, “what I can say about diabetes type-1 is this: If they have poor breathing, which they usually do… they need a lot more insulin… to normalize their blood sugar. Consequently, they damage the organism enormously. And their future – I’m very sad to say – is very bleak as a result in terms of kidney problems, circulatory problems, myopathy, all these eye problems.”
Bleak. Yes. And while the focus tends to be on high blood sugars, this may not be the heart of the bleakness. As Buteyko’s research suggests, poor circulation (caused by over-breathing) may be the real cause of most diabetic complications. Poor circulation, ironically, may be the body’s way of protecting the internal organs from the acidity of high blood sugars.
“…what I have seen,” Drake continued, “is when they practice [the] Buteyko Method, their requirement for insulin drops dramatically – often by 50% or 60%.”
This reflects the consensus I’ve heard from many sources. Regardless of whether the Buteyko Method can reverse type-1 diabetes, it will diminish the need for insulin.
“But can you remove insulin completely?” concludes Drake. “No, because if it is proper authentic diabetes type-1, they don’t produce insulin. There is no repair that can be effective because it could be something genetic. It could be infection that has damaged the tissue so badly beyond repair or whatever the situation is…”
Genes probably play a role, but I haven’t seen enough evidence to suggest they make the situation irreversible. And as far as tissues being damaged beyond repair? Possibly. But who is to say? Tissues are constantly regenerating themselves. Nonetheless, I appreciate his conservative viewpoint.
“I would highly recommend that they practice Buteyko Method,” says Christopher Drake, “so they can bring their insulin consumption to… its minimum. And, thus, they can have… a much happier and healthier future.”
“But I’ve never managed to solve out type-1 and take them off insulin,” Drake admits. “I’ve never seen it. I don’t believe it…. I could be wrong, of course, [if] my understanding is somehow skewered.”
In future posts, I’ll share accounts from Russian practitioners who claim that type-1 diabetes has been reversed using the Buteyko Method (subscribe, so you don’t miss out). But if Dr. Drake is correct, than the Butyeko Method still offers people with type-1 diabetics freedom from kidney failure and amputations. And, in conjunction with other treatments, it still could play a critical role in reversing the disease.
Thinking Outside the Type-1 Matrix,
–John C. A. Manley
P.S. For more information on how the Buteyko Method can help people with type-1 diabetes you can read: CO2 to the Rescue: How Breathing Less Can Help Reverse Complications of Type-1 Diabetes
P.P.S. For more information on the Buteyko courses offered by Christopher Drake’s organization you can attend one of their free webinars.