Is Diabetes Reversible? WebMD’s Chief Medical Officer Explains How to Prevent It or Reverse It in New Book

Take Control of Your Diabetes Risk, by John Whyte, MD offers simple steps to avoid the impact of one of America’s most prevalent diseases

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New York, NY, February 22, 2022 – With simple strategies that are scientifically grounded and practical, John Whyte, MD, WebMD’s Chief Medical Officer, offers the 34 million Americans diagnosed with type 2 diabetes a life-enhancing way to slow or stop the disease course, while  giving the 88 million people with pre-diabetes strategies to avoid diabetes entirely.

Launching March 8 and available to pre-order, Take  Control of Your Diabetes Risk, (Harper Horizon, March 8, ISBN 0785240640), busts the myths about who gets type 2 diabetes and why, and dismantles the notion that a diagnosis of pre-diabetes means diabetes is inevitable.

“When people are diagnosed with diabetes, they are understandably worried,” said Dr. Whyte.  “They wonder what it means for their lives, and they often feel powerless. I wrote this book to give people back their power, with practical tools that can reverse pre-diabetes and possibly diabetes.  As a practicing physician, I want people to know that lifestyle changes, begun early on in a diagnosis, can make a huge difference.”  

With type 2 diabetes, the body becomes resistant to insulin, the hormone secreted by the pancreas that regulates the body’s use of sugar, or glucose, for energy.  To compensate, the body produces more insulin, but because cells are resistant to it, the body still can’t effectively process glucose.   The result is an excess level of sugar in the blood stream, which can lead to serious cardiovascular, neurological and immune system disorders and a range of issues, from blindness to sexual dysfunction.  

Risks for diabetes and pre-diabetes include being overweight or obese, family history of diabetes, or having high blood pressure or high cholesterol. Other risk factors include being 45 or older, a sedentary lifestyle, or a history of gestational diabetes. African Americans, Alaska Natives, American Indians, Asian Americans, Hispanic/Latino, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders are also at increased risk. People with pre-diabetes, who have elevated levels of blood sugar not yet high enough for a diabetes diagnosis, are at sharply elevated risk, yet nearly 85% are unaware they have the condition.

Debunking unscientific claims and products promising “cures,”  Dr. Whyte offers practical guidance and realistic goal setting, including effective and doable weight loss strategies, the right kinds of exercise and how often (it’s not 10,000 steps), which supplements can help (and which show no benefit), the pros and cons of a vegan or plant-based diet, and stress control techniques that can help manage blood sugar. It also features a four- week meal plan, as well as a four-week exercise plan.

“I wanted to be honest in this book,” said Dr. Whyte. “America has a blood sugar problem, and its impact is felt in the lives of millions. People have far more control then they think. Making any change can be challenging at first, but the benefits for people with diabetes or pre-diabetes can literally change the course of their lives. It’s a journey, but one worth taking.”

Take Control of Your Diabetes Risk is the second in the three-part “Take Control” series, which gives people the strategies they need to be more in charge of their health and well-being.

The book is now available now for preorder at Amazon and everywhere books are sold. 


John Whyte, MD, MPH, is a popular physician and writer who has been communicating to the public about health issues for nearly two decades.

In his role as chief medical officer of WebMD, Whyte leads efforts to develop and expand strategic partnerships that create meaningful change around important and timely public health issues. He has been a leading voice in addressing the COVID pandemic, being named as one of the top 20 health influencers. Prior to WebMD, Whyte served as the director of professional affairs and stakeholder engagement at the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Whyte worked with health care professionals, patients, and patient advocates, providing them with a focal point for advocacy, enhanced two-way communication, and collaboration, assisting them in navigating the FDA on issues concerning drug development, review, and drug safety. He also developed numerous initiatives to address diversity in clinical trials.

Prior to this, Whyte worked for nearly a decade as the chief medical expert and vice president, health and medical education, at Discovery Channel, the leading nonfiction television network. In this role, Whyte developed, designed, and delivered educational programming that appealed to both a medical and lay audience. This included television shows as well as online content that won over 50 awards

Whyte is a board-certified internist. He completed an internal medicine residency at Duke University Medical Center and earned a Master of Public Health in health policy and management at Harvard University School of Public Health. Prior to arriving in Washington, DC, Whyte was a health services research fellow at Stanford and attending physician in the department of medicine.

About WebMD

WebMD Health Corp., an Internet Brands Company, is the leading provider of health information services, serving patients, physicians, health care professionals, employers, health plans and health systems through public and private online portals, mobile platforms, and health-focused publications. The WebMD Health Network includes WebMD Health, Medscape, Jobson Healthcare Information, MediQuality, Frontline, Vitals Consumer Services, Aptus Health, Krames, PulsePoint, The Wellness Network, SanovaWorks, MedicineNet, eMedicineHealth, RxList, OnHealth, Medscape Education, and other owned WebMD sites. WebMD®, Medscape®, CME Circle®, Medpulse®, eMedicine®, MedicineNet®, ®, and RxList® are among the trademarks of WebMD Health Corp. or its subsidiaries.