Virta Health: Reverse your type 2 diabetes with ketogenic coaching


The just launched tech company Virta Health can help you reverse your type 2 diabetes, with the help of a ketogenic diet, a mobile app and coaching by nutritionists and doctors.

It’s possible to sign up and pay cash if you’re not on an employer-sponsored health plan. The price has been a bit unclear until now, but appears to be $400 per month for the first year:

diaTribe (dT): How will the individual version of Virta Health be priced?

Virta Health (VH): Most of Virta’s patients come through employer-sponsored health plans, and Virta is covered for those people. For patients who come to Virta directly, we offer an out-of-pocket (cash-pay) option that costs roughly $400 per month for the first year. Virta has both monthly and yearly payment options, and also offers a patient assistance program based on the ability to pay. After you apply online, you’ll receive more information about Virta that includes pricing details, which you can review before scheduling a consultation.

diaTribe: Virta Health: Reversing Type 2 Diabetes with Low-Carb Diets & Coaching


A Ketogenic Diet for Beginners

How to Reverse Type 2 Diabetes


The Launch of Virta Health – Reversing Type 2 Diabetes in 100 Million People?

Top videos about type 2 diabetes

  • My low-carb story with Marc Gossange
  • Living low carb with Chris Hannaway
    "I have been following the wrong advice!"
  • How to help patients reverse type 2 diabetes


  1. Jeff C
    Yeah sure, $400/month for what I can get for the price of Dr. Atkin's book and some ketosticks at Walgreens. No one in their right mind would pay one-tenth of this out of their own pocket.

    It's great that mainstream medicine is starting the recognize the benefits of low-carb in reversing T2D and metabolic syndrome, but this is troubling. This seems intended to "medicalize" low-carb so these guys can charge insurance and medicaid for big bucks for their "professional" assistance. If the past is any history, look next for a push to make things like ketosticks prescription only to keep them out of the hands of us amateurs. Of course, the price will skyrocket once availability is restricted. All part of the plan. Peter Attia should be ashamed for lending his name to this.

    The medical industry is heavily responsible for the current epidemic with their destructive nutrition advice and pill for every ailment mentality. Now that common folks apart from them have found something that works, they apparently intend to appropriate it as their own. Of course that will come with their ridiculous inflated costs as their "expertise" ain't cheap. No thanks.

  2. Pat Kenyon
    NO THANKS.. We have Diet Doctor!
    Who would need this service? Unless they start demanding we take perscriptions to get our weekly shop, they will never be able to medicalise low carb.
  3. Julia
    $4800 US dollars per year??? They obviously only want to help Insured US citizens. A privileged group! So much for wanting to reverse T2DM world-wide! I contacted them late last year and they didn't want to know me. Even if I could afford the mega bucks.
  4. Pierre
    Before bullshitting about Virta Health it would be wise to know what they offer!

    I think is more than a meal plan, it looks like the person is followed by doctors and have access to a coach anytime.

  5. $400 per month??? Holy ****!!! For an app and a 'health coach'? Are you kidding? At DietDoctor, you get a meal planner and 'Ask the Experts' for $9/ month. That's a savings of 97.7%, by my calculations. I agree with Jeff C. I offer a health coach, too, for $400 USD per YEAR (intensive dietary management program).
    Replies: #17, #27
  6. 1 comment removed
  7. paul
    I don't see how they will reach millions of people with that kind of pricing?
  8. Aline
    That seems a very steep price and nearly unaffordable for almost anyone. Maybe 40$ would be reasonable. Even 100$ if that means you get coaching 24/7. Everyone needs to make a living but this seems like a rip-off. It still upsets me a little bit to see how people within the low carb community seem to be suddenly fighting each other instead of working together.
  9. bill
    Okay all you people who are criticizing Virta.

    Those clients who are being helped by this
    system are getting off diabetes medications,
    neuropathy medications and others. How
    much do those medications cost each month?
    Right there $400/month pales in comparison.
    How much is it worth to not have retinopathy
    advance? How much is it worth to have a
    doctor monitor in real time your blood sugar
    along with your medications? What would
    your doctor charge to do the same thing, if
    they even would or could?

    How much is it worth to have a professional
    to answer personal questions and oversee
    your program, not just a few words on a
    blog, but a real discussion with a like-minded

    Do you want others to look at
    what you charge in your business and declare
    that you overcharge people who desperately
    need your services?

    We're all doing what we can.

  10. Mary
    I thought diet doctor's big point was that there are no adverts or sponsorship by interested parties so as to be impartial. On the face of it this is endorsement of a firm selling a product. I will now be seriously reconsidering my membership.
    Reply: #22
  11. Julia
    Bill, in Australia we have a government-subsidised pharmaceutical benefits scheme (aka "socialism" to most Americans) so medications cost a max of around $35 per script per month and around $5 per script per month if you're on a pension etc. so I would say $400 US per month is excessive for medications or for diabetes support.
    Reply: #14
  12. Jennifer
    Maybe $400 is a bit excessive, but this involves individual, daily support, including by a doctor who is monitoring blood sugar and ketones and giving daily feedback. You have to pay for that. If that is what the person needs to turn their life around and go from sick to healthy, maybe it isn't too bad.
  13. Jeff C
    Those defending Virta are missing the point. It wouldn't matter if it saved someone $20K/year in medications, they are charging $4800/year for something most of us have done for virtually nothing. If someone does need coaching (or don't want to take the time to study it themselves) much cheaper alternatives are available as Dr. Fung points out.

    I would be willing to bet that fewer than a couple dozen people actually sign up to pay this out of their own pocket. The point of these exorbitant fees is to get them established as the norm so they can justify bilking insurance companies and the government once this becomes the standard of care. They are attempting to take low carb/keto and turn it into a medical "treatment", and along with that comes the ridiculously inflated prices of US health care, of course.

    The truth regarding low carb's ability to reverse T2D is now undeniable and the medical industry knows it. They need to change tactics or they will completely lose credibility. We'll likely soon start hearing how low carb/keto is "very effective but can be extremely dangerous unless medically-supervised". That will clear the way to for the US medical industry to take it over. Virta looks like the opening shot to me.

  14. bill
    Good for Australia!
    AFAIK Virta is getting their referrals from
    U.S. clients. and $400/month in medications
    is commonly low.

    No everyone can do it on their own.

    No bilking involved.

  15. bill
    "Not everyone..."
  16. Gentiann
    I guess that people who are chocked by the cost of $400 are not familiar with the outrageously expensive American health care system.......Believe me $400 is cheap for this kind of service in the US.
    The average American diabetic patient spends probably close to $1000 a month on care and medications.....even if covered with insurance because of very high deductibles that can be as high as $12000 a year.
    The fact is this inefficient system of multiple private insurances creates a huge and very costly bureaucracy that keeps prices very high.
  17. Dr. Andreas Eenfeldt, MD Team Diet Doctor
    To be fair I believe what they offer is way beyond what we're able to do, when it comes to personalised advice by coaches and physicians. It's not even close really. So I don't think comparing prices is fair, as it's a whole other level of support.

    Their prices will likely come down over time, and they'll likely offer lower-priced, less exclusive services to suit more people.

  18. bill
    Dr. E:

    Well played...

  19. Apicius
    Does anyone know what the cost of Dr Bernstein weight loss clinic programs are? Aren't they given similar support and advice. I don't think it's $400 per month. But I can be misinformed.
  20. James
    I have a call scheduled for Friday, although it very unlikely I will 'bite.' Here's what an email I received said.
    Virta has two payment options for patients, with a minimum commitment of 12 months.

    Option 1: Lump sum annual payment
    $4,500 for year 1, paid up front
    Subsequent years are reduced to $2,250 paid annually

    Option 2: Initiation fee and monthly payments
    $370 paid monthly for year 1, with a $500 initiation fee up front
    Subsequent years are reduced to $199 paid monthly, with no initiation fee

    Kind regards,

  21. Nils
    Reading the comments here makes me a bit sad. There are many of us who are fighting hard everyday to push through the norms formed in great extent by the sugar industry that are currently making people sick and depressed.
    Here is a company that has the right idea, treating diabetes at its core by providing information and support on a ketogenic lifestyle. Sure it might sound expensive, but lets face it, there needs to be a profitable future for these kind of companies in order for the "keto industry" to really take off. Profitability and money is key to this paradigm shift.
    And also, I love the fact that there are all these different alternatives out there. If you can do great by just reading the information on and through that change your life then that is awesome, but for someone else who needs more support this can be the best investment they ever make.
    I also would like to point out i'm not affiliated with either party here, I'm just a normal guy who would like to see this paradigm shift take place and for that we all need to pull in the same direction!
    Reply: #35
  22. gbl
    Virta will be asiduously monitoring and documenting results in the scientifically accepted manner, and I would expect, be peer reviewed publishing on it. That's exactly what must happen and hasn't to date. Fact. Science.
  23. Tim
    The science was proven a 100 years ago. A well known treatment then...How hard is it to eat unprocessed low carb food only and fast as required?
    If they want to publish peer reviewed stuff, and re-invent the wheel, let them pay for it.
  24. Anne-Marie
    How does this company plan to get blood tests on electrolytes without a prescribing doctor somewhere near the patient ? With Atkins, unbalanced electrolytes were a serious risk if I recall correctly, so monitoring, recognition of symptoms and guidance are important.

    Whilst I'm at it here : can anyone recommend a doctor who can help me with keto in Belgium? Any language OK with me.

    Reply: #25
  25. Jenai
    Virta works with the patients local physician and labs are drawn locally and then sent to the Virta physician for review. It is a combined team effort between Virta and the patient's local physician to work to heal the metabolism and turn the diabetes around.
  26. Karen
    As a US physician and medical educator with T2DM, I am really excited to see this care model! One visit to the doctor cost $895 last month. My insulin alone costs $400/mo, of which I pay $80. Trulicity costs $675/mo, of which I pay $125. Glucose test strips can be over $1 per test, and I test at least 4x/day. My insurance might pay for one CDE visit per year.
    Diabetes is expensive, and medical practice has been shaped by research, which is funded in large part by pharmaceuticals. Current guidelines for T2DM management are flawed, but religiously followed.
    Virta has the potential to change the way diabetes is managed. Yes, it costs nothing to follow a keto diet, but daily support, individualization of therapy, medical monitoring to reduce and eliminate my diabetes and hypertension meds safely, test strips, and integration of care with my local MD is a bargain at $4500 for one year. If they acquire the data needed to influence current management guidelines, US health care costs could actually plummet.
    Go Virta!
  27. Lisa
    I'm having gastric sleeve soon
    Would love to change my life through diet but I have no will power
    Replies: #28, #31
  28. bill
    Willpower is not needed on LCHF. Eat to satiation
    but just don't eat carbohydrates. Pretty simple.
  29. Sam
    I'm sorry, but I don't believe one person supporting this company with their comments here is anything less than a person with a financial interest in this company. Case in point, bill chastises people for being critical about the cost of this service and then states in another post: "Willpower is not needed on LCHF. Eat to satiation but just don't eat carbohydrates. Pretty simple." That's worth $4800? lol. Their advice can't be much different than what you receive here or at Dr. Jason Fung's website unless they have different science!
  30. Dana
    All you people saying $400 a month is cheap? I don't know how to say this nicely and don't see why I should: Go to hell.

    All those "expensive diabetes medications" that old people are on? Medicare covers that. They're not seeing the full price of that. If they had to pay $400 a month out of pocket they'd be eating cat food and living in boxes on the street. To imply that this is somehow a savings for what most people even in the USA are getting subsidized in the first place is insane.

    *I* can't afford $400 a month. Thank Jeebus I already have a pretty good idea what to do, but I really feel sorry for people whose insurance doesn't cover this, or who don't have insurance (the ACA didn't rescue everybody--thanks a lot, "conservative" states), because they aren't going to have $400 of wiggle room either. It's not even about "caring enough". It's about THERE IS NO WIGGLE ROOM TO SQUEEZE OUT $400 EXTRA A MONTH.

    If you've never been in that situation, instead of blaming people for something you don't understand, count your blessings.

    P.S. This is why so many poor people are fat and/or diabetic!

  31. Dana
    Gastric sleeve *is* changing your life through diet. You won't have a choice if you want full nutrition once your stomach is smaller.

    And you better *get* the willpower or you'll blow through your sleeve and hurt yourself.

  32. 1 comment removed
  33. Charlene
    I can definitely see both sides of the coin here. I am suspicious though of the healthcare industry involvement, my gut tells me there could be trouble. I imagine the fees are so high because they can get it-- 1. either from the patient's health insurance carrier or 2. from patients who work but have inadequate care so the rest is out of pocket (and the membership fees are less than the meds).

    What I find most interesting is that Virta wants their yearly money upfront (or a 12 month contract-which sounds like no way out). They also want an initiation fee-(what is this a fraternity??). It seems to me that they want their money upfront because once the patient "finds out" what it is all about they realize they can do this on their own for almost no money at all. It seems they are preying on desperate people who don't know where to turn.

    Granted there may be a handful of people with extensive health issues that need tight Dr supervision, but let's face it these folks are most likely already being followed by scads of Dr.s. Why not just go LCHF or keto and not bother telling them? Let your improved health guide their treatment plan (and baffle them at the same time).

    It is really no surprise that Keto is going corporate--it was only a matter of time. Here's a tip: invest in the food industry now, because there is no doubt there are a slew of "keto" products coming to a store near by.

    Keep On, Keto-ing On!

    Reply: #34
  34. bill
    In our area, many doctors are going "concierge medicine" even if
    you have no health issues. This is the new model.
    Virta gives great value for the money. Don't be so sure
    people can do this (reversing diabetes) on their own.
    The medical supervision is necessary to protect against
    hypos and other common issues faced by diabetes sufferers.
    Congratulations that you have the fortitude to take it on by yourself.
    By the by, do you have diabetes?
  35. Carol
    Thank you for you level headed comment!
  36. Terri
    I'm a bit late to the discussion, but for those looking form more recent comments on the topic:
    I work at Purdue University and have many diabetic and pre-diabetic co-workers participating in the Virta program (fortunately) covered by Purdue's health care options. One of our local city governments is also covering their workers participation. It's a wonderful program, ran by caring people, that's helping my friends live better lives and and get off of meds. The level of support and interaction provided to the participants is astounding. They receive very close monitoring and have almost instant access to medical support/advice/coaching. Some of the harsh "do it yourself" comments above surprised me. I'm sure some could, but once your at that level, diabetes is a tricky thing and doing it all oneself could actually be quite dangerous. I'm so happy for (and a wee bit jealous of :) ) my friends and co-workers who are getting the support and monitoring they need to get healthy. Yes, the $400 discussed is no small amount for most of us, but I know some who will spend $300 a month on mail-you-food diet programs--and many do. I know what I believe to be the better value. --Respectfully submitted
  37. KassR
    Any updates on this? I have been doing a cost comparison with PreKure’s Diabetes program. Has anyone had any experience with that? My 76 year old father has type 2 diabetes and is located in Australia and is a Low Income Aged Pensioner with a Health Card Seniors Card. Is there a comparative program in Australia that anyone knows of?
    Reply: #38
  38. Kerry Merritt Team Diet Doctor

    Any updates on this? I have been doing a cost comparison with PreKure’s Diabetes program. Has anyone had any experience with that? My 76 year old father has type 2 diabetes and is located in Australia and is a Low Income Aged Pensioner with a Health Card Seniors Card. Is there a comparative program in Australia that anyone knows of?

    You may want to reach out to Virta Health for more information!

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