A month or so ago, I read a conversation on TuDiabetes that someone said that they were doing a treatment that reversed her kidney problems. She sounded like an advertisement for it, but someone else that I respect responded and said that she had heard of that treatment. Curiosity killed the cat, so I decided to Google it.
The treatment is called metabolic activation therapy (MAT®) or pulsatile intravenous insulin therapy along with several other names. It has been shown to reverse gastroparesis, neuropathy, blood pressure problems, hypo-unawareness, eye problems and kidney problems. Before you get too excited like I did, treatment is very expensive and is not covered by a lot of insurance companies. It costs about $25k per year so unless you are independently wealthy or have an insurance company that will cover it, it is not affordable to most of us.
Basically, you receive insulin via an IV for a 6 hour session, which is done weekly. Things like gastroparesis show improvement right away but peripheral neuropathy takes longer. Unfortunately if you stop treatment, the complications will most likely return.
I think that the best way to explain how it works is to just copy that from the FAQ page of the Aoki Diabetes Research Institute. Read can the whole FAQ page here.
7. How do MAT® treatments work?
A MAT® treatment involves delivering insulin intravenously in a pulsatile fashion using a special pump over a 6-hour period. The pulses deliver a higher, more physiologic concentration of insulin to the liver than are delivered by traditional subcutaneous injections. This higher level of insulin available to the liver stimulates liver cells to synthesize glucokinase and other insulin-dependent enzymes necessary for normal dietary glucose processing and homeostasis.
This improved metabolism is measured by the patient’s respiratory quotient (RQ). RQ is a measure of the success of tissues in using oxygen and burning fuel. During the 6-hour session, the RQ increases toward normal levels. (See Physiology )
Over many months glucose metabolism returns to a more normal pattern and is maintained there by weekly MAT® treatments. The metabolism of many other tissues also improves, permitting more normal glucose control, more normal blood pressure control, and the repair of some complications of diabetes.