Lillian Wilson

Life Without Diabetes by Roy Taylor

This book challenges conventional beliefs about diabetes and offers hope for reversal through rapid weight loss and lifestyle changes.

Life Without Diabetes

The book has gotten 4.21 ⭐️ on GoodReads.

For decades, type 2 diabetes has been seen as a life-long disease. The diagnosis brings about a significant change, making one’s health feel fragile and the future uncertain. But in 2006, Roy Taylor, Professor of Medicine and Metabolism, came across a study that showed blood sugar getting back to normal really fast after bariatric surgery. This breakthrough challenged the conventional belief and raised the possibility of a simple and reversible solution to type 2 diabetes, consolidating years of research into a new perspective. The question remained: Could this be a genuine breakthrough?

In this review, we will delve into a compelling book ‘Life Without Diabetes’ by Roy Taylor which presents a revolutionary approach to managing and reversing type 2 diabetes using rapid weight loss.

Author’s background

Roy Taylor holds the position of Professor of Medicine and Metabolism at Newcastle University, along with serving as an Honorary Consultant Physician at Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

Roy Taylor (r)

He completed his medical education at the University of Edinburgh. During the period of 1990 to 1991, he served as a visiting professor of medicine at Yale University in the USA, during which time he acquired novel MRI techniques for in-depth exploration of the human body. After returning to the United Kingdom, he secured £5.2 million in funding to establish the Newcastle MR Centre. Additionally, he played a pivotal role in developing the UK’s system for diabetic eye disease screening. Dr. Taylor’s academic contributions extend to his authorship of more than 300 scientific papers.

What is the book about?

In his transformative book, ‘Life Without Diabetes, Dr. Roy Taylor introduces a scientifically validated program for managing and reversing type 2 Diabetes, applicable at any health stage. Based on over four decades of research, his 2017 breakthrough established that type 2 diabetes can be prevented and cured through a simple regimen. The root cause lies in excess fat accumulation in the liver and pancreas, impairing their functions. Remarkably, shedding a minute amount of this fat, less than one gram, initiates the process of reversal.

Central to this approach is a rapid weight loss. Dr. Taylor’s innovative strategy curbs daily calorie intake, enabling individuals to shed up to 35 pounds in just eight weeks. Dr. Taylor’s mission is to democratise understanding of type 2 diabetes, providing effective strategies for individuals and families grappling with this condition. His method, distinct from traditional diets, employs weight loss as a tool to study diabetes reversal dynamics. This approach yielded significant weight loss and enhanced well-being among participants in his research.

Table of contents

  • Introduction
  • 1. What Is Type 2 Diabetes?
  • 2. Energy for Life: The Dual Fuel
  • 3. How Your Body Deals with Food
  • 4. Type 2 Diabetes: A Bad Case of Food Poisoning
  • 5. A Murder Mystery and the Twin Cycles
  • 6. The Personal Fat Threshold
  • 7. Escaping from Type 2 Diabetes
  • 8. Enjoying Life and Staying Away from Diabetes
  • 9. Don’t Be Fooled
  • Recipe Section
  • Recipes for Step 1
  • Kevin’s Smoky Sofrito
  • Carol’s Ratatouille
  • Celeriac Bravas
  • Courgetti Arrabbiata
  • Cauliflower Rice
  • Cauliflower Tabbouleh
  • Harissa-Stuffed Red Peppers
  • Simple Broiled Eggplant
  • Helen’s Garlicky Greens with Mushrooms
  • Janet’s Zucchini with Scallions
  • Mediterranean-Style Artichoke Salad
  • Squash and Coriander Salad
  • Helen’s No-Noodle Chow Mein
  • Easy Vegetable Curry
  • Soups
  • Lynda’s Curried Butternut Squash Soup
  • Watercress Soup
  • Zucchini and Coconut Soup with Cilantro
  • Chunky Vegetable Soup
  • Thai-Style Bean Sprout and Bok Choy Soup
  • Recipes for Step 2
  • Breakfast
  • Spicy Breakfast Eggs
  • Lesley’s Oven Frittata
  • For Lunch
  • Feta and Broiled Eggplant
  • Kath’s Hearty Veggie Chili
  • Chicken Skewers with Tabbouleh
  • Hearty Soup
  • For Dinner
  • Chicken Curry with Indian Spiced Cabbage
  • Oven-Baked Salmon with Stir-Fried Veg
  • Recipes for Step 3
  • Pesto-Crusted Cod with Roasted Mediterranean Vegetables
  • Helen’s Fish Pie with Celery Root Topping
  • Eggplant and Ricotta Rolls with Tomato Sauce
  • Kath’s Roasted Sausage with Apple
  • Carol’s Parmesan Chicken with Garlic Stir-Fried Broccoli and Mushrooms
  • Tara’s Tacos
  • Kevin’s Carrot and Celery Root Curry
  • Allan’s Ginger Chicken
  • Tony’s Alternative Sunday Lunch
  • Kieran’s Chipotle Sausage Casserole
  • Acknowledgments
  • Appendix
  • Bibliography
  • Index
  • About the Author
  • Praise
  • Permissions
  • Copyright
  • About the Publisher

Three key takeaways from ‘Life Without Diabetes’

1The 1,2,3 approach helps you to set yourself free from diabetes

There are other approaches to losing weight. However, several high-quality studies have shown that going on an intensive rapid weight loss diet for a period is not only effective for most people but extraordinarily motivating.

In his book, Taylor presents the 1,2,3 approach that offers a distinctive strategy for addressing type 2 diabetes, departing from traditional slow and prolonged weight loss methods. This approach encompasses three distinct stages:

  • Rapid weight loss: Begin with an intensive phase of rapid weight loss with a defined endpoint. The focus here is on shedding excess weight through a low-calorie diet, such as liquid formula products, aimed at achieving around 800 calories per day.

  • Stepped food reintroduction: Transition from rapid weight loss to reintroducing ordinary foods in a stepwise manner. Start with substituting one meal with regular food for around two weeks, followed by incorporating another meal over four weeks. The goal is to establish sustainable eating habits while avoiding the pitfalls of suddenly reintroducing a full diet.

  • Long-term weight maintenance: Once you have achieved a significant weight loss and remission of type 2 diabetes, maintain your new healthier weight by eating around three-quarters of your previous portion sizes. Regularly monitor your weight and make necessary adjustments to prevent significant weight regain.

2What to do after the weight loss? Five golden principles that will help you ensure sustainable results

The book emphasises that your diabetes-reversal journey does not end with weight loss. After achieving substantial weight reduction, maintaining your progress is crucial. As a result, the author outlines five principles that can be followed in order to ensure long-term results.

  • Structured meal timing: Consume meals only during designated mealtimes and avoid snacking between meals.

  • Mindful eating: Focus on your meals and avoid distractions like reading or watching TV while eating to prevent overeating and enjoy the experience more.

  • Fresh ingredients over ready-made meals: Opt for meals prepared with fresh ingredients over commercial ready meals, which can often contain added sugars and lack satisfaction.

  • Eliminate sugary drinks: Steer clear of sweetened beverages, recognising their contribution to excess calorie intake.

  • Celebrate and compensate: Embrace special occasions and celebrations, but counteract indulgence by cutting back on calories during the subsequent week.

3The one-size-fits-all approach to diet doesn’t exist

At the end of the book, the author explains the difference between various diets and challenges the idea that a single ‘healthy diet’ can work for everyone. The book highlights how people have unique food preferences and habits, rejecting the idea of one perfect eating plan for all. It explains how the body’s digestion, managed by the liver, affects calorie distribution.

The book challenges the saying ‘you are what you eat,’ suggesting ‘you are how much you eat’ matters more. While exploring diets like low-carb, Mediterranean, and intermittent fasting, the book stresses that personalised approaches are key to success, focusing on finding an eating style that suits individual preferences and lifestyles for long-term sustainability.

Strengths and weaknesses, according to readers’ reviews


  • Offers actionable and practical insights for managing health and nutrition.

  • Successfully balances scientific detail with simple explanations.

  • Written in an easy-to-understand and informative manner, making complex topics accessible to readers.


  • Tends to repeat information, making it feel unnecessarily lengthy.

  • Falls short in explaining the concept of ketosis and its relevance.

Best quotes from ‘Life Without Diabetes’

“A rapid weight loss phase followed by a stepped return to normal eating is very different from the standard advice of “slow and prolonged” of recent years. The 1,2,3 approach recognizes that losing weight is a distinct activity, separate from the matter of keeping the weight steady in the long term, and that there are many benefits from losing weight fast in the first instance.”

“The basic message on alcohol is to enjoy it in moderation – as long as you are honest with yourself about how much is going down and you can keep your consumption to within the weekly calorie envelope that will keep your weight steady.”

“So it is the duration of physical activity rather than the intensity that has more effect in determining how much energy is used. As an extreme example, when Ranulph Fiennes and Mike Stroud walked across Antarctica pulling heavy sledges over mountains and crevasses for up to 14 hours per day, it was estimated that they burned 11,500 calories every day! Gluttons for punishment as they are, even Fiennes and Stroud would not have been able to burn anything like that in shorter bursts of more intense exercise.”

Final takeaway

Dr. Roy Taylor’s book, ‘Life Without Diabetes,’ offers a groundbreaking approach to managing and reversing type 2 diabetes. His scientifically validated 1,2,3 approach challenges traditional methods by advocating rapid weight loss, gradual food reintroduction, and long-term weight maintenance. The book empowers readers to understand the complexities of diabetes and sheds light on the significance of individualised dietary strategies.

With a focus on practicality, Taylor’s insights resonate with a broad audience, including those struggling with diabetes and anyone seeking effective, science-backed ways to enhance their health.

Where to buy

You may purchase ‘Life Without Diabetes’ on Amazon at the best price. It is available in paperback, hardcover, audio and Kindle versions, so you may choose an option that appeals to you the most.

Healthypedia FAQ

Dr. Roy Taylor's extensive experience in medicine, metabolism, and research lends credibility to the book's content. His authorship of over 300 scientific papers and his position in academia strengthen the scientific foundation of the book.

Yes, the book acknowledges the emotional impact of a diabetes diagnosis, describing how it can make one's health feel fragile and uncertain. It explores how the newfound approach to diabetes management could offer hope and improved well-being.

Yes, the book offers practical recipes that are designed to align with the book's principles and provide readers with nutritious and satisfying meal options that can contribute to their overall well-being and diabetes management efforts.

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