The Link Between Diabetes and Obesity

Diabetes is a serious, chronic condition that requires ongoing management. Type 2 diabetes often occurs in patients who suffer from obesity. While the exact connection between being significantly overweight and contracting diabetes is still being studied, we can be sure that there is a connection, based on overwhelming statistical evidence. In fact, more than 9 out of 10 people with Type 2 diabetes are overweight or obese.

If you’re overweight and want to reduce your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, losing weight can help. Here at Family Care, Dr. Samir Khalil provides treatment and support to patients of all ages dealing with diabetes and other obesity-related concerns. We serve patients at two offices located in Paterson and Totowa, New Jersey.

Insulin issues

Diabetes is a chronic metabolic condition that affects every system of your body. The central problem caused by diabetes has to do with the way you metabolize glucose. While glucose is an important source of fuel for your body, excess glucose accumulating in your blood can lead to serious imbalances. Too much glucose in the blood is also known as high blood sugar.

The hormone insulin, which is produced in your pancreas, controls the distribution and processing of glucose in your body. Diabetes affects your insulin production and the way your body uses the insulin you do make, leading to ongoing blood sugar issues. If your blood sugar is chronically high, it can have serious negative impacts on your health.

Linking Type 2 diabetes and obesity

Being overweight or obese significantly increases your chances of developing type 2 diabetes, also known as adult-onset diabetes. Type 2 diabetes accounts for more than 90% of all diagnosed diabetes cases. When you have Type 2 diabetes, even though your pancreas produces insulin, your cells become resistant, and you don't utilize it properly. Eventually, your insulin production suffers as well.

Researchers are still studying the exact causes of Type 2 diabetes, but the link to excess weight is clear. Obesity and lack of physical exercise appear to make insulin resistance significantly worse. Genetic factors can also be an issue, as is a history of low birth weight. 

But even if you have a genetic predisposition, lifestyle changes like adjustments of your diet and exercise habits have been shown to delay or even prevent the onset of Type 2 diabetes.

Lose weight to avoid diabetes

You can improve the way your body processes blood sugar through moderate and sustained weight loss, targeting 5-10% percent of your total body weight. Diet and exercise are the core of healthy weight loss, but prescription medications and surgical options may also be worth exploring. Lowering your weight can decrease your blood sugar levels and reduce your need for diabetes medications.

If you're at risk for diabetes, making healthy changes to your diet and lifestyle to help you lose weight can prevent you from developing the full-blown condition. Dr. Khalil can help you get started on a path to safe weight loss and diabetes prevention. If you've already been diagnosed, we can also support you in living with Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes.

Our patients receive fully customized treatment plans to address their unique needs. We offer on-site lab and diagnostic services, to make testing convenient. To schedule your appointment, call one of our Family Care offices or use the online booking tool.

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