Diabetes and How It Is Related to Obesity
Obesity and Diabetes – One in ten people in the world has diabetes. Around 85% of these people are also overweight. Hence, the connection between this insulin disorder and weight is undeniable. Let’s have a closer look at why it is so.
What Is Diabetes?
Usually, our body releases the hormone insulin after each meal. Its role is to process and store sugar and fat, reducing their presence in the bloodstream. Diabetes means this hormone can no longer perform its normal function due to one of two reasons:
- The pancreas can’t produce enough or any insulin.
- The body develops resistance, thus, preventing the hormone from its normal work.
These two reasons lead to two diabetes types. The first type is a genetic autoimmune reaction. It happens when body cells start seeing the hormone insulin as a threat. Thus, the body attacks the cells producing it. Without insulin, our body can’t deal with sugar intake, which can be a life-threatening condition.
The second type occurs when our bodies produce very little insulin or when they can’t recognize/resist the hormone. People usually receive this diagnosis after 40 (although it can occur earlier in life) as it is often triggered by an individual’s lifestyle choices. Thus, excessive weight, lack of exercise, or poor diet can be common factors of risk.
Both types of diabetes can also trigger the development of heart disease, kidney failure, or high blood pressure. Diabetes isn’t curable. Yet, one can live with it for a long time as one learns to manage it.
Obesity and Type 2 Diabetes
Insulin-resistant diabetes is often caused by lifestyle, age, family history, or the development of other health disorders that can impact insulin release for controlling blood sugar. Patients with obesity are most at risk of developing adult-onset diabetes due to sedentary lifestyle, age and being overweight.
For example, individuals with excessive weight have a 93% higher chance of receiving a diabetes diagnosis than individuals with a healthy weight-to-height range.
To put it briefly, the more unbalanced weight-to-height ratio a person has, the more they are at risk of becoming obese and developing insulin-resistant diabetes. Such statistics indicate that body weight has a direct correlation to producing insulin. The higher weight leads to a decrease in this hormone, which is a direct path to diabetes.
Risk Factors for Developing Diabetes
Diabetes and obesity do have a direct connection. People with one diagnosis are most likely to have another, too. Even more, obesity is often named the number one reason for the given disease. Yet, there are other factors to consider when discussing diabetes. Here are a few examples:
- family history;
- genetics (including ethnic background);
- insulin resistance;
- lack of activity (sedentary lifestyle);
- insulin resistance due to the pancreas and other disorders, and more.
Overall, several of these factors, or even each aspect single-handedly, can also cause this unfortunate disorder.
How to Eliminate Any Diabetes Risks
A healthy and active lifestyle is the best prevention strategy here. People with higher body mass should consider taking active steps to begin their weight loss journey. Plenty of physical activity is the first step in keeping diabetes at bay. Regular exercise long walks, and other physical attempts at losing weight will reduce your risks.
A healthy diet, of course, should be the following step. A balanced diet with a wide diversity of nutrients, healthy fats, minerals, and vitamins will help balance your blood sugar, improve mental and physical health, and result in higher energy levels, a better immune system, and a healthier lifestyle.
Lastly, people who fall under the diabetes risk should pay close attention to their blood pressure. Typical, excessive weight leads to a higher blood pressure range. Hence, by losing weight, you are also expected to manage your blood pressure, bringing it to lower (healthy) numbers. Fortunately, exercising, weight loss, and a healthy diet should normalize your blood pressure without any medication.
Obesity and Diabetes – Bottom Line
Obesity and diabetes do go hand in hand on many occasions. People with higher BMI experience greater chances of developing adult-onset diabetes, especially after a certain age. Obesity affects one’s lifestyle, making it more passive and sedentary. Lack of activity is yet another common reason for diabetes. Extra weight can also lead to higher blood pressure, enhancing the risks of the disease.
In addition, obesity often comes from an unbalanced diet, which can provoke the development of diabetes. Overall, people with obesity should take extra care of their lifestyle and diet to manage their diabetes risks.