Obesity and Diabetes Risk

Obesity remains a major burden for society, affecting both the young and old. It has been estimated that one in 5 adults are overweight and one in 15 adults are obese in the UK The sharp rise in overweight and obesity means that more and more people are also developing chronic conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure heart disease and stroke and certain cancers. Diabetes is one of the four major chronic conditions.

Diabetes occurs when the special cells that secret insulin, called the beta cells, do not respond adequately to insulin. This is due to the fact that:

  • The body is unable to use the insulin that it makes because of a cell-receptor defect and therefore glucose can not be absorbed by the cells
  • The cells do not secret enough insulin
  • There is excess production of glucose from the liver

There are certain lifestyle changes that influence the sunset of diabetes:

  • Oveating
  • Overweight
  • Lack of exercise
  • Aging
  • Illness
  • And certain medicines

Diabetes can be difficult to manage and its complications are serious if not managed properly. It is not always diagnosed on time and more often when complications have already set in.

Complications of Diabetes

  • Kidney failure
  • Slow healing wounds
  • Blindness
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Cardiovascular disease

How can Diabetes be avoided?

  • Weight loss
  • Exercise
  • Eating healthy

Even a modest weight loss of 5-10kg of your body weight will have a positive effect on a persons' overall health. When weight is reduced by five to ten kilograms, it helps to improve back and joint pain, breathlessness and sleeping pattern. Weight loss will also help the persons' blood pressure to improve and other risk factor for heart disease and diabetes. Diabetics who are successful at losing weight will find that they might not need to go on medication in the long term.