- by Diabetacare 24x7 Diabetes Care
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- Feb 09 2017
How Strong Is the Link Between Obesity and Diabetes?
Obesity and diabetes have become co-dependent to such a level that the term ‘diabesity’ has been coined. It is used to refer to a form of diabetes which typically develops later in life, and is associated with being obese. Increased intake of glucose (sugar) increases the deposition of fat in the body which eventually leads to obesity related disorders and contributes to high blood sugar levels. Following a diabetic diet, helps in both diabetes management and weight management. Live fit & healthy life needs to be the motto for individuals facing the risk of either obesity or diabetes.
Whether it is a festival, joyous occasion, social gathering or even offering to the gods, sweets have always been a crucial part of the Indian way of life. Traditionally, a practice to “sweeten the mouth” after each meal is also followed amongst many. While sugar is of a major relevance in the Indian culture, it provides ‘empty’ calories ultimately leading to weight gain. At present, India is home to the third largest population of obese people, whereas the diabetic population in the country has grown from 50.8 million in 2010 to 65.1 million in 2016.
According to World Health Organization (WHO), at least 2.8 million people die each year as a result of being obese. The fact that obese people face a much larger risk of getting hit by diabetes is well known, and after years of research scientists have found the link between the two. The extra fat accumulated around the organs of an obese person directly relates to the improper functioning of the insulin hormone, which forces blood cells to accumulate high amount of sugar, ultimately causing diabetes.
Obesity and insulin-resistance:
Diabetes is identified with too much sugar (glucose) in the blood, due to improper secretion of the insulin hormone by the pancreas. The risk of obesity influencing the insulin production in the body is not solely dependent on the degree of obesity but also on which part of the body is accumulating fat.
Below we discuss the 2 factors that have been known to link obesity to insulin resistance;
- Inflammation: It causes fat cells to release ‘pro-inflammatory’ chemicals, which might make the body less sensitive to the insulin it produces by disrupting the ability of cells to respond to insulin.
- Disrupted Fat Metabolism: Obesity triggers major changes to body’s metabolism, which cause the fat tissue to release fat molecules into the blood, affecting insulin responsive cells leading to reduced insulin sensitivity.
- A recent study published in The Times Of India suggests that obesity has emerged as a major cause of type2 diabetes with over 80 percent adult diabetics in India being overweight. Since obesity and diabetes are inter dependent, doctors suggest that many medications used to treat diabetes can cause weight gain too; insulin being the prime example.
- Though, simple diabetic diet and control can help prevent the incidences of diabetes by about 58 percent, as suggested by the Diabetes Prevention Program Study of USA but
- Fighting Obesity and Diabetes
Diabetes and obesity go hand in hand, and if you initiate ways to prevent one, the other will follow suit. We bring you 5 tips for diabetes management and weight management:
- Follow a low-calorie diet:
- A diabetic diet rich in proteins, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates will ensure the body has enough energy to function properly and will also refrain you from binge eating, by keeping you full for longer.
- Shed excess body fat:
- Excess body fat, slows the metabolism of the body, and slower the metabolism, the slower is the fat-burning process. Also, according to American Diabetes Association, for every 1 kilogram of weight loss, the risk of diabetes lowers by 16 percent.
- Stressing less:
- Stress leads to not one but numerous complications in the body, prime being increased blood sugar levels and excessive eating disorders. The process of meditation has proved immensely beneficial in coping with stress.
- Indulge into a physical activity:
- A sedentary lifestyle makes our body inactive, also being the reason of more fat deposition and increased glucose in the blood. Exercising not only helps burn fat, but helps cells be more sensitive to insulin.
- Have a sufficient amount of sleep:
- Poor quality of sleep and insomnia might not seem major issues in a short time, but in the long run they highly influence the risk of diabetes and obesity. Continued sleeping problems can be treated by consulting a doctor.
- Drink a lot of water:
- Water is a natural fat burner, so every time you feel yourself moving towards cola to quench your thirst, grab a bottle of water. The studies published on the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) link sugar-sweetened beverages to obesity and diabetes.
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- Regular health check up:
- Symptoms for both obesity and diabetes are not always evident, which is where regular health checkups come in handy. Routine health checkups and consultations with your doctor help in identifying the disease at an early stage and prevent it as well.
- Both the conditions of obesity and diabetes are completely preventable if one vows to change their habits. Live fit & healthy life needs to be the top priority when it comes to treating these diseases. Keeping yourself motivated enough will result in leading a better life.
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