Scientifically proved

Find out where the NHS programme is running and what to do if you're not in one of those locations.

NHS programme

Soups and shakes diet

In 2020, the NHS launched a year-long medical trial aimed at helping those recently diagnosed with type 2 diabetes lose weight, a key factor in managing and reversing the condition.Based on the evidence from two major studies (the DiRECT trial and the Droplet trial) the NHS launched The NHS Low Calorie Diet Programme, also known as the NHS Soup and Shake Diet.The NHS spends £10 billion treating type 2 diabetes and its complications every year, making effective treatment a major health priority. In recent years, life-changing research has made the hope of finding a solution a reality.Weight loss is now widely acknowledged as an effective way to achieve remission, with clinical trials showing that of individuals who lost over 15kg of weight, 86% successfully reached remission.[1]

Holistic treatment


Where the programme’s running

The pilot locations in the programme include:

  • Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes
  • Birmingham and Solihull
  • Derbyshire
  • Frimley
  • Gloucestershire
  • Greater Manchester
  • Humber Coast and Vale
  • North Central London
  • North East London
  • South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw

The programme is then set to become available in the following areas in 2022:

  • Black Country and West Birmingham
  • Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire
  • Kent and Medway
  • Lancashire and South Cumbria
  • Mid and South Essex
  • North East and North Cumbria
  • Nottingham and Nottinghamshire
  • Somerset
  • South West London
  • Sussex
  • West Yorkshire

The NHS and Diabetes UK are working together to expand the availability of the programme, with further details yet to be released.


Any questions? We’ve got the answers


[1] Lean, M.E.J., Leslie, W.S., Barnes, A.C., et al. (2018). Primary care-led weight management for remission of type 2 diabetes (DiRECT): an open-label, cluster-randomised trial. Lancet 391(10120):541-551.
[2] Lean, M.E.J., Leslie, W.S., Barnes, A.C., et al. Durability of a primary care-led weight-management intervention for remission of type 2 diabetes: 2-year results of the DiRECT open-label, cluster-randomised trial. (2019). Lancet Diabetes Endocrinol 7(5):344-355.
[3] Lim, E.L., Hollingsworth, K.G., Aribisala, B.S., et al. Reversal of type 2 diabetes: normalisation of beta cell function in association with decreased pancreas and liver triacylglycerol. (2011). Diabetologia 54(10):2506-14.
[4] Taheri, S., Zaghloul, H., Chagoury, O., et al. (2020) Effect of intensive lifestyle intervention on bodyweight and glycaemia in early type 2 diabetes (DIADEM-I): an open-label, parallel-group randomised controlled trial. Lancet 8(6):477-489.
[5] Astbury, N.M., Aveyard, P., Nickless, A., et al. (2018). Doctor referral of overweight people to low energy total diet replacement treatment (DROPLET): pragmatic randomised controlled trial. BMJ 362:K3760.
[6] Christensen, P, Meinert Larsen, T, et al. (2018). Men and women respond differently to rapid weight loss: Metabolic outcomes of a multi-centre intervention study after a low‐energy diet in 2500 overweight, individuals with pre-diabetes (PREVIEW). Diabetes Obes Metab 20: 2840– 2851.
[7] Morris, E., Aveyard, P., Dyson, P., et al. (2019). A food-based, low-energy, low-carbohydrate diet for people with type 2 diabetes in primary care: A randomized controlled feasibility trial. Diabetes Obes Metab 22(4):512-520.