5 benefits of losing weight for people with diabetes
Losing weight can prevent many serious diabetes complications and even reverse the disease in some cases. Here are other benefits explained by an expert.
Diabetes and its many complications can affect the body in a number of ways making one susceptible to kidney issues, nerve problems, heart disease, oral problems among many others. Managing the disease with medication and lifestyle changes can prevent one from these complications and help one lead a better life. Losing even 5% of the body weight can help improve blood pressure and cholesterol levels which can prevent many other serious diseases from developing. According to Diabetes UK, 60% of people with type 1 diabetes and around 85% of people with type 2 diabetes are carrying extra weight or are living with obesity. Thus, shedding weight can be extremely beneficial for diabetes patients. (Also read: 7 healthy ways to lose weight in summer season)
Additionally losing weight can also help one feel better, have more energy and sleep better. As you lose more weight, it would be easier for you to manage the disease. Losing a tremendous amount of weight in a healthy way can also reverse the disease completely in some cases.
"Getting in shape can immensely benefit people with diabetes. Getting to a healthy weight does have the potential to cure type 2 diabetes for many people, though not always. Losing weight may allow people with diabetes to take fewer medications, even if it does not completely cure the condition. Additionally, it frequently assists in the management or prevention of many diabetes-related complications. Maintaining an ideal body weight means that you need to maintain a body-mass index (BMI) lesser than 25," says Dr V. Mohan – Chairman and Chief Diabetologist – Dr. Mohan’s Diabetes Specialties Centre.
There are many causes for the development of type 2 diabetes. However, being overweight is a crucial risk factor. If you are overweight, your body requires as much as two to three times as much insulin to maintain normal blood glucose levels as it would if your weight were normal.
"The insulin-producing cells begin to die as soon as the pancreas attempts to produce that much insulin. That exacerbates things because the pancreas then has considerably fewer cells with which to make insulin. The fact that obese individuals have more abdominal fat actually affects the pancreas.
Diabetes and many of its complications can be prevented if you lose weight," adds Dr Mohan.
Dr Mohan explains the health benefits of losing weight with diabetes:
1. Your pancreas is better placed to meet your body's requirement for insulin.
2. At times, weight reduction is sufficient to return blood glucose to normal levels.
3. Even if it does not completely restore normal blood sugar levels, it may reduce the need for insulin therapy or other diabetes medications.
4. Additionally, it lowers your risk of other serious diabetes complications, such as heart disease, kidney disease, and nerve damage.
5. The risk of developing diabetes decreases for those who maintain a healthy lifestyle. Controlling one's weight is very important for people who have diabetes in their family. Remaining at an ideal body weight brings down their possibility of getting diabetes by around 30 to 60 percent.