It is different because it enables you to be much more precise with your insulin doses, and allows for much more flexibility than other current insulin regimes.
Yes, except for having sugary drinks you can adjust your insulin to cover anything you choose to have. DAFNE allows people to eat what they want when they want; this includes not eating if you do not feel like it.
DAFNE is a package that includes not only the patient course but includes support from experienced healthcare professionals; plus the entire DAFNE programme includes lots of measures to ensure and maintain the quality of the course.
It is this entire DAFNE package that has proved to be successful in trials conducted both in Europe and here in the UK. This is not to say that other ways of delivering the DAFNE course may not be as successful as the 5-day course, however, any alternative methods of delivery must be scientifically assessed before they are recommended. People need to be offered a ‘tested product’.
By having the course over a week, people are able to discuss every day how they are progressing, and get all of the information in a concentrated way. It also means people can learn from each other and be more experimental with new ways, knowing it can be discussed within 24 hours.
DAFNE was developed for people with Type 1 diabetes and as such is not appropriate for people with Type 2 diabetes. There is no evidence that intensive insulin therapy is of benefit for people with Type 2 diabetes.
Many people who have been on a DAFNE course say this before they complete their DAFNE programme. Some people with Type 1 diabetes have learnt over many years of private trial and error how to adjust insulin to food in a very sophisticated way. However DAFNE teaches people the skills that take the guess work out of insulin adjustment and people are much more likely to keep the blood glucose in the target range and reduce the risk of a severe hypo. DAFNE builds confidence quickly to make the very large changes in insulin needed on a meal-by-meal basis, in a truly free diet.
The added benefit is that it is an opportunity to learn about new ideas in diabetes care, and is also a refresher of basic information.