Obesity, as well as Type 2 diabetes, are both major epidemics around the world. So it is no secret the two are directly related. Type 2 diabetes seems like a contradiction since it is possible for an overweight individual not to exhibit symptoms of diabetes, just as it is possible for a slender, fit individual to develop the disease. Regardless, it is a well documented fact most Type 2 diabetics are overweight. In fact, statistics reveal 80 to 90 per cent of Type 2 diabetics are overweight or obese.
Unfortunately, once you are diagnosed with diabetes, your weight issues aren’t over. The great news though is the majority of the risk factors are under your control.
- excessive weight is a common cause for Type 2 diabetes and if the diabetic were not overweight, the odds are they would probably not have developed the disease.
- the extra weight is commonly due to poor eating habits, with diabetes being the result of those habits.
- over time, excess sugar and a high carbohydrate intake, along with little or no exercise, places the body in a position where blood sugar levels become affected.
This is why once a person is given a diagnosis of Type 2 diabetes, the second thing their doctor will advise, after helping to get their blood sugar levels into line, is to encourage weight loss. But once blood sugar levels start to lower it is not unusual to find weight starts to lower also
But while losing weight is hard enough for a non-diabetic, it is even more difficult for a diabetic. Burning excess calories for weight loss means dipping into fat reserves and sugar levels. That is one of the reasons it is imperative diabetics start their exercise routine slowly and work their way up to a more intense program. Starting out too fast or too intensely will only create another problem… hypoglycemia.
Another weight problem for many diabetics is the fact one of the unfortunate side effects of some diabetes medications is weight gain. This is especially troubling news for someone who is already overweight. To add insult to injury, this type of weight gain is commonly experienced in the midsection, one of the worst places for a diabetic to carry extra weight.
Fat cells, especially fat cells around the abdomen, secrete a number of different chemicals and hormones. These chemicals have several actions that continue to promote the development of Type 2 diabetes. They:
- lower the effectiveness of your body’s insulin,
- reduce the ability your muscles to use sugar for energy,
- increase the amount of glucose made by your live, and
- impair the release of insulin by the beta cells of your pancreas.
So, losing abdominal fat is top of the list for anyone diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes.
Even though failure to maintain good eating habits, and medications, are the two common causes of weight gain for diabetics, it doesn’t have to stay this way. Eating the right balance of the right foods, at the right intervals, will not only prevent weight gain, but it will help you to lose weight. Plus, the right mixture of vitamins and nutrients will make you feel better overall.
If medication is causing weight gain then talk to your doctor about switching to another type. This may not always be an option, but it is still worth asking about. It may mean changing drugs more than once to find one that doesn’t affect you in this way. Even if a new medicine doesn’t completely eliminate the weight gain issue, reducing it’s effects can still give you an advantage and help you with weight loss.