A prospective study was undertaken in 107 Indians with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) for a period ranging from 2 to 10 years. On follow-up, 32% still had an impaired glucose tolerance, 32% reverted to normal glucose tolerance and 36% developed diabetes. Careful dietary adherence and weight reduction were found to favour normalisation of glucose tolerance. Poor dietary adherence, persistent obesity and weight gain were found to precipitate diabetes. The study stresses the need for intensive diet therapy in individuals with IGT. Insulin responses were heterogeneous in IGT and non-predictive of the follow-up changes in glucose tolerance.