Share on PinterestExperts say that a nutritious diet and regular exercise can lower your risk of type 2 diabetes. Galina Zhigalova / Getty Images
- New research shows that a high percentage of newly diagnosed cases of type 2 diabetes are related to obesity.
- Family history and certain ethnic groups are other risk factors for developing type 2 diabetes.
- A small decrease in body weight – only 5 percent – can significantly reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes.
- Eating a nutritious diet and exercising regularly can help reduce body weight.
Recent research sheds new light on the importance of weight loss in reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes.
The study, published this week in the Journal of the American Heart Association (JAHA), found that obesity is a major contributor to a significant number of type 2 diabetes cases.
“It comes as no surprise to anyone that obesity is a major risk factor for diabetes,” said Dr. Sadiya S. Khan, senior study author and assistant professor of medicine and preventive medicine at the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University in Illinois. said Healthline.
“What surprised us was the magnitude of the burden of diabetes in relation to obesity. Between a third and half of all new diabetes cases have been attributed to obesity, ”noted Khan.
Healthline interviewed experts who said the study highlights the link between obesity and type 2 diabetes and could serve as a wake-up call for those who are already at risk.
It is important to note that risk factors are racial and income related. One reason for this can be inequalities in health care.
The study’s authors found that participants with obesity were more likely to be non-Spanish Blacks or Mexicans. People with annual family incomes less than $ 50,000 were also more likely to be obese.
“We now know from this recent research that certain populations make disproportionate contributions to this risk of obesity,” said Dr. Spencer Kroll, director of the Marlboro, New Jersey cholesterol treatment center, told Healthline.
The study also found the effects on non-Hispanic white women.
Research found “a disproportionate effect of obesity in non-Hispanic Caucasian women, who appear to be significantly higher at risk of developing diabetes if they are overweight,” Kroll said. “In addition, this study is the first to include a population-based mapping of Latinx populations for obesity and diabetes. This group has a higher exposure to both conditions. “
Kroll added that the study highlights the need for appropriate and targeted public health policies for different groups.
Given the diverse number of these groups and the financial burden of diabetes in the United States, Kroll said it is important to identify the precursors to diabetes and how they differ in these populations so that specific guidelines for obesity prevention can be established.
According to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 34 million Americans – about one in ten – have diabetes, and 90 to 95 percent of that population have type 2 diabetes.
And obesity is an epidemic in the United States. The latest figures from the CDC show that 42 percent of Americans are obese. In 1999-2000, that number was 30 percent.
However, experts say that a little effort can help reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes.
The diabetes prevention program found that weight loss of 5 to 7 percent reduced the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 58 percent in adults at high risk of the disease.
These numbers were noted in the latest JAHA study.
Dr. Kuldeep Singh, director of the Maryland Bariatric Center at Mercy, told Healthline that knowing if you are in danger is important.
“If a person has a mother or father with type 2 diabetes and is over 40 years old, they should check their weight and blood sugar levels regularly,” said Singh.
“Sometimes the media and literature confuse obesity and overweight. As a practical matter, being overweight is less similar to obesity in its negative effects on the body, ”he explained.
Singh said people could take control of the condition.
“A modest decrease – 10 percent of total weight – goes a long way in treating diabetes,” he said. “Not only does it improve blood sugar levels, it also reduces the general risk of early death and other serious complications. Exercise increases the use of blood sugar and sensitivity to insulin in the liver and muscles, and independently helps with blood sugar control. “
Dr Stephanie Redmond, a diabetes consultant and co-founder of Diabetes Doctor, told Healthline that changing your diet can help, but there’s more to it than that.
“I’ve seen most of the benefits of intermittent fasting,” she said.
“However, this doesn’t mean you can eat what you want during the meal window or it won’t work. When you eat an enormous amount of carbohydrates, it can overwhelm your pancreas and lead to a huge spike in insulin. If you go crazy fasting and have crazy hunger attacks, this is probably not for you, ”she added.
Redmond said another critical component is exercise.
“Diet is important, but not everything. You are tired of hearing people tell you to exercise, but you have to, ”she urged. Watch a YouTube video of a step class and do it on your stairs, try kickboxing at home, or take a walk with your grandchildren and do a few extra jumps. Try to have at least 20 to 30 minutes at a time. “