Diabetes FAQs

do you gain or lose weight with diabetes

by Ursula Krajcik Published 1 year ago Updated 11 months ago

Sometimes, people with diabetes need to gain weight. But to do this, they need to choose foods that will increase their calorie intake without causing their blood sugar levels to spike. Many people with type 2 diabetes receive advice to lose weight because a high body mass index (BMI

Body mass index

Body mass index is a value derived from the mass and height of a person. The BMI is defined as the body mass divided by the square of the body height, and is universally expressed in units of kg/m², resulting from mass in kilograms and height in metres.

) can increase the risk of diabetes and its complications.

Type 2 diabetes can cause weight loss if a person does not receive treatment. On the other hand, weight gain may also occur once a person starts insulin therapy.Aug 12, 2021

Full Answer

Can diabetes prevent you from losing weight?

Weight loss in kids with diabetes can occur even in those who have a normal or increased appetite for the same reasons it happens in adults with diabetes. Once kids are diagnosed and treated for diabetes, weight loss ceases and typically returns to normal. Symptoms of diabetes are often too subtle and gradual for people to recognize.

How to regain lost weight due to diabetes?

  • Count calories. Eating and drinking fewer calories helps you prevent weight gain.
  • Don't skip meals. Don't try to cut calories by skipping meals.
  • Be physically active.
  • Ask your doctor about other diabetes medications.
  • Take your insulin only as directed.

Can a poor diet cause diabetes?

People with poor dietary diversity are more likely to develop obesity and type 2 diabetes, according to a new review. Researchers at Pennington Biomedical Research Centre, United States report that poor diet diversity leads to a weak ecosystem of gut bacteria that increases the risk of metabolic diseases. An example of poor diet diversity is a reliance on foods which lack a wide range of nutrients, such as white bread, white rice, pasta and pastries.

Can loss of appetite be sign of diabetes?

This is considered a serious condition as it is a sign that your diabetes is out of control and you should contact your doctor. To keep things in check always monitor your blood sugar levels. Get your blood and urine checked for ketone levels. Low appetite can mean that you’re running the risk of weight-loss.


Do diabetes make you gain weight?

Some sugar can be stored in the muscles and liver; however, most sugars are stored as fat when they have nowhere else to go. Thus, people with diabetes are more likely to be overweight or obese than those without the disease. While weight gain is one of the most common side effects of diabetes, it is not inevitable.

Do you lose weight on diabetes?

Unexplained weight loss can occur in people who have Type 2 diabetes, but it's more commonly found in people with Type 1. Parents are often the first to notice unusual weight loss in a child with Type 1 diabetes.

Does diabetes cause rapid weight loss?

Diabetes and sudden weight loss In people with diabetes, insufficient insulin prevents the body from getting glucose from the blood into the body's cells to use as energy. When this occurs, the body starts burning fat and muscle for energy, causing a reduction in overall body weight.

What is a diabetic belly?

Diabetes belly fat is a serious problem that can also signal heart failure. May people are not aware that the little stubborn fat around the waist that does not easily come off is due to the insulin problem. If you have high blood sugar there is a good chance that you have a problem removing the fat around the waist.

How much weight does a diabetic lose?

How much weight do I have to lose to lower my risk of diabetes? If you are pre-diabetic or diabetic, then losing 5-10 percent of your body weight can help improve your blood sugar numbers.

Why do diabetic patients lose weight?

Since there's no insulin available to move glucose into the body's cells, glucose builds up in the bloodstream. The kidneys then work to remove this unused sugar through urination. The sugar isn't used as energy, so the body starts burning fat and muscle for energy, resulting in weight loss.

Can type 2 diabetes make you lose weight?

Since the cells cannot get the energy they need from glucose, the body breaks down fat to use for energy instead. This can result in weight loss. Weight loss without obvious causes may be a symptom of type 2 diabetes.

What is a good blood sugar level for weight loss?

According to the study, you'd need to meet the following criteria to be considered metabolically healthy: Blood sugar below 100 mg/dL after an overnight fast. Blood pressure below 120/80. Triglycerides below 150 mg/dL.

Do you have to include drinks when you are gaining weight?

Don’t forget to include drinks especially if you enjoy creamy sugar and carb-laden flavored lattes, a regular alcoholic tipple or fruit juices all which can be calorie-laden and possibly adding to your weight gain.

Can insulin be used to gain weight?

For instance, insulin analogs (human modified insulin) can be an alternative to some other types of insulin and may be less likely to cause weight gain.

Is sweaty and irritable hypoglycemic?

Sweaty and Irritable? You Could be Hypoglycemic

Does insulin cause weight gain?

For example, insulin medications like meglitinides, sulfonylureas, and thiazolidinediones are also associated with weight gain. Even so, weight gain on these medications is far from universal. Studies show that it affects some but not others.

Can diabetes cause weight gain?

Well, the answer is not a simple yes or no. There can be issues relating to your diabetes causing you to gain weight, or it could be that you are simply overeating and/or not exercising enough.

Can diabetes cause thyroid problems?

A thyroid disorder – Studies show that thyroid disorders are more common in people with diabetes so make sure your doctor checks your thyroid hormone levels every year. If you already take medication for a thyroid condition, make sure your healthcare provider checks the amount you take regularly.

Why do people with diabetes have excessive hunger?

This is the reason that a person with untreated diabetes experiences excessive hunger: It's the body's way of saying the cells need more fuel. Advertisement. This condition of the cells not getting enough fuel leads to weight loss. But, as explained by Diabetes.co.uk, eating more food can't fix the problem, because more food just creates more ...

What are the symptoms of diabetes?

Other Symptoms of Diabetes. In addition to unexplained weight loss and excessive hunger, excess thirst and increased urination are two of the other most common symptoms of diabetes. High blood sugar levels forces the kidneys to work overtime in order to clear the excess glucose through urine, according to JDRF.

What Is Diabetes?

In order to understand diabetes-related weight loss, we first need to understand how diabetes works.

How does the body convert food into glucose?

The body converts the compounds in food (mainly carbohydrates) into glucose, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine. The hormone insulin moves glucose out of the bloodstream and into the cells, which use it for energy. But people with diabetes either don't make enough insulin or can't use insulin properly.

What is the disease that causes weight loss?

Image Credit: west/iStock/GettyImages. Diabetes is a metabolic disorder in which the body is unable to properly control blood glucose levels, aka blood sugar. One of the symptoms of diabetes is unexplained weight loss.

Why do diabetics feel hungry?

When glucose gets left in the blood, it doesn't reach the cells — and the cells therefore don't get energy. They then send a signal to the brain that they need more fuel, which prompts the brain to trigger the hunger response. This is the reason that a person with untreated diabetes experiences excessive hunger: It's the body's way of saying the cells need more fuel.

Does diabetes cause weight gain?

Advertisement. The longer that a person's diabetes goes undiagnosed, the more weight they could lose unintentionally. Once a person begins treatment, however, they tend to gain weight, which is a good outcome, Elizabeth Halprin, MD, clinical director of adult diabetes at Boston's Joslin Diabetes Center, tells LIVESTRONG.com.

Why do people with diabetes have to burn fat?

People with diabetes are unable to use or produce enough insulin to transport excess sugar out of their blood and into their cells , where it can be used as energy. This can cause your body to burn its existing fat stores and muscle tissue in order to supply your cells with energy. If your sugar levels are constantly in flux, ...

What supplements can help you gain weight?

Look for supplements designed to help build muscle mass, such as casein or whey protein powder.

Why is it important to eat carbohydrates?

Eating carbohydrates low on the glycemic index is important for maintaining stable blood sugar levels. Folding healthy carbs into your ‘six meals per day’ plan may help you gain weight, but it’s important to keep an eye on your glucose levels.

What happens if your sugar levels are constantly in flux?

If your sugar levels are constantly in flux, your body will continue to chip away at its fat stores, resulting in weight loss.

How to get a good weight?

Talk to your doctor or dietician about how you can best achieve this. They can help you set weight goals, create a meal plan, and modify your exercise routine to set you up for success.

Does diabetes affect weight?

How diabetes can affect your weight. Although diabetes is often associated with being overweight, especially type 2 diabetes, it’s a myth that everyone with diabetes has a high body mass index (BMI). Some people have trouble gaining weight. In fact, unexplained or unintentional weight loss can be a symptom of undiagnosed diabetes.

Does adding protein to carbs increase caloric intake?

Adding a protein or fat each time you eat a carb may help increase caloric consumption, without causing your sugar levels to spike.

How does diabetes affect weight?

A balanced diet and an active lifestyle can help all kids maintain a healthy weight. For kids with diabetes, diet and exercise are even more important because weight can affect diabetes and diabetes can affect weight. This is true for kids and teens with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes. In diabetes, the body doesn't use glucose properly. Glucose, a sugar, is the main source of energy for the body. Glucose levels are controlled by a hormone called insulin , which is made in the pancreas. In type 1 diabetes , the pancreas does not make enough insulin. Undiagnosed or untreated type 1 diabetes can cause weight loss. Glucose builds up in the bloodstream if insulin isn't available to move it into the body's cells. When glucose levels become high, the kidneys work to get rid of unused sugar through urine (pee). This causes weight loss due to dehydration and loss of calories from the sugar that wasn't used as energy. Kids who develop type 1 diabetes often lose weight even though they have a normal or increased appetite. Once kids are diagnosed and treated for type 1 diabetes, weight usually returns to normal. Developing type 1 diabetes isn't related to being overweight, but keeping a healthy weight is important. Too much fat tissue can make it hard for insulin to work properly, leading to both higher insulin needs and trouble controlling blood sugar. In type 2 diabetes , the pancreas still makes insulin, but the insulin doesn't work in the body like it should and blood sugar levels get too high. Most kids and teens are overweight when they're diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Being overweight or obese increases a person's risk for developing type 2 diabetes. Also, weight gain in people with type 2 diabetes makes blood sugar levels even harder to control. People with type 2 di Continue reading >>

Why Did I Gain Weight When I Started Taking Insulin?

This is because they either are not producing enough insulin or their bodies are unable to use the insulin they produce properly. This food winds up as excess glucose circulating in the blood (resulting in high blood glucose!). Ultimately the body can't use all that extra glucose circulating in the blood and so it is eliminated in the urine. When your blood glucose runs high, you can become dehydrated as your body works to clear itself of all that excess glucose — which makes you think you've lost weight, but you've only lost water. Then, when you start taking insulin and get your blood glucose under better control, you start over-retaining fluids initially to make up for your dehydration, which makes you think you've rapidly gained a lot of weight. You associate it with taking insulin, but really what is happening is taking your insulin properly is just enabling your body to better use food and maintain a proper water balance. Also, once you start taking insulin injections and start getting your blood glucose under control, you now have enough insulin circulating in your blood to help the glucose get into the body's cells where it can be used as energy. So the glucose produced by the food you eat is no longer spending time in your bloodstream and being excreted out as urine. You gain weight. Your high blood glucose may have also made you feel more hungry because not all the food you were eating was able to get into the cells as energy to nourish the cells. Then, you started taking insulin — and continued to eat t Continue reading >>

Can diabetes cause weight gain?

Although diabetes is often associated with being overweight, especially type 2 diabetes, it’s a myth that everyone with diabetes has a high body mass index (BMI). Some people have trouble gaining weight. In fact, unexplained or unintentional weight loss can be a symptom of undiagnosed diabetes. Issues with weight management center around insulin, a hormone produced by your pancreas. People with diabetes are unable to use or produce enough insulin to transport excess sugar out of their blood and into their cells, where it can be used as energy. This can cause your body to burn its existing fat stores and muscle tissue in order to supply your cells with energy. If your sugar levels are constantly in flux, your body will continue to chip away at its fat stores, resulting in weight loss. Diabetes food plans are often geared toward helping people lose, rather than gain, weight. This can make it harder to figure out how to gain weight in a healthy way. Before trying the tips below, talk with your doctor or dietician. They can help you set the right diet and exercise goals for you, as well as answer any questions you may have. There are many apps available to help you manage your condition and make the right food choices. Look for apps that help you track blood sugar and BMI. Some options include: GlucOracle: This glucose forecasting app uses crowdsourcing to analyze the estimated amount of carbohydrates, protein, fat, calories, and fiber in each meal. It also predicts what your glucose level will be after eating. SuperTracker: This app helps you gain weight by providing comprehensive nutritional information on over 8,000 food items. It also tracks your nutritional targets, diet, and activity levels against your goals. If these don’t appeal to you, we’ve also rounded up Continue reading >>

Is It Possible To Have Type 2 Diabetes But Gain Weight?

Diabetes Forum The Global Diabetes Community Find support, ask questions and share your experiences. Join the community Is it possible to have type 2 diabetes but gain weight? I've been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes but am worried reading all the diet plans on this website that I have no option but to lose weight in order to reduce my Hbac1 glucose level down from 61. I'm 6 foot 3 and 12 stone and very skinny. I cant face losing weight and becoming even skinnier because as it is I stick out like a sore thumb So my question is, does it go hand in hand that if you have diabetes then you cannot healthily put on weight by choice? Or is there a diet plan out there that can either help me gain weight or at least maintain my current weight please? I was a 'healthy' weight on diagnosis, I lost one and a half stones and I'm still a healthy weight. I do not wish to lose any more weight so I am experimenting with reintroducing some carbs (by way of carrots and peas, anything that does not spike my bg) and have regained 2lbs. I will continue to do this until I can maintain my weight but not at the cost of rising bg. Hope this helps. It is perfectly possible not to lose weight, and even to gain weight. Keeping carbs low is essential if you want to control your blood sugar levels, but you can still use proteins and fats to keep the weight on. If you do some calorie counting, and maintain a correct calorie balance for your size and lifestyle, you can gain the calories you lose from reducing carbs by adding calories from proteins and fats. It will be a balancing act, with lots of trial and error, but it can be done. Are you sure you are type 2? I don't know how you've been diagosed or how long you've had diabetes, but there are still GP's around who don't know grown-ups can get type Continue reading >>

Why is insulin not used in type 2 diabetes?

With type 2 diabetes, the pancreas creates either too little or too much insulin, but because of insulin resistance, glucose is locked out of the body's cells, sugars cannot enter cells to be used as energy. As a result, the body may over-produce insulin, and glucose remains in the bloodstream, circulating throughout the vascular system. This is a problem because excess blood sugar makes our blood vessels less stretchy and causes them to narrow, blocking blood flow.

Does exercise help with diabetes?

Recent research reveals that exercise and minor weight loss are vital in reducing the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, even for those predisposed due to family history. According to the Journal of the American Heart Association (JAHA), obesity significantly likens the chance that someone will develop type 2 diabetes.

Can diabetes cause weight loss?

The cellular energy factories, mitochondria, in people with diabetes are more sluggish, and that hunger hormone levels in these folks can be unbalanced, but people with blood-sugar and insulin challenges can definitely lose weight.

Do You Gain Or Lose Weight with Diabetes?

A healthy weight is crucial for limiting long-term damage from diabetes.

What are the signs of diabetes?

Excessive thirst or hunger and urination are telltale signs of diabetes. These symptoms can be especially dangerous if left untreated because they can cause dehydration .

Why do people get type 2 diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes occurs when the body doesn't make enough insulin or doesn't use it properly. People usually acquire type 2 diabetes later in life, however, with a rise in childhood obesity, children are developing type 2 diabetes at an increasing rate. Being overweight is a primary risk factor for type 2 diabetes.

How Much Weight Loss Is a Concern?

Unexplained weight loss is when someone drops a significant amount of weight without a change in diet or exercise or without making other lifestyle changes.

How does diabetes work?

In all forms, diabetes functions similarly. Most of the food we eat is broken down into a sugar called glucose, which is then released into the bloodstream. When blood sugar rises, it prompts the pancreas to release insulin. Insulin is a hormone that the body needs to deliver the glucose from the bloodstream into the cells of the body. 1.

How do you know if you have diabetes in your child?

Similar to adults, hallmark early signs of diabetes in children are increased urination and thirst. When blood sugar is high, it triggers a reaction in the body that pulls fluid from tissues. This will leave a child constantly thirsty, causing them to drink more fluids, which will result in a need for more bathroom breaks throughout the day. Dehydration in children becomes a risk if this occurs.

Why does my blood sugar rise so fast?

Dehydration also causes someone to urinate less often, which allows excess blood sugar to build up in the bloodstream. When this happens, blood sugar levels rise too fast. Be sure to watch for these other signs of diabetes, too: 5. Itchy skin: Diabetes caused by high blood sugar can make someone prone to dry skin.

What are the traits of diabetes in kids?

Here are some traits of diabetes found in kids: 8. Fatigue: If a child is often tired, it may be a clue that their body is having trouble converting sugar in the bloodstream into energy. Vision changes: High blood sugar levels can cause blurred vision and other eyesight problems.

Why does diabetes medication cause weight changes for some people?

Diabetes medications cause weight changes by affecting how sugar is used by the body. Insulin is a hormone that helps your body to turn sugar from food into energy for your cells. Insulin helps sugar move from your blood into your cells. This movement lowers your blood sugar.

Can weight gain or loss from diabetes medication be prevented?

Weight changes from diabetes medications may be preventable. Diet and exercise play an important role in managing diabetes. These healthy lifestyle changes can help lower blood sugar and lower weight. It’s best to discuss with your healthcare provider what changes would be best for you.

Is weight gain or weight loss a more common side effect of diabetes medication?

Neither weight gain nor weight loss are more common with diabetes medications. There are several different types of diabetes medications available. They work in different ways to help lower blood sugar. The risk of weight gain or weight loss depends on the medication.

How to prevent weight gain while taking insulin?

Avoid weight gain while taking insulin. Eating healthy foods and being physically active most days of the week can help you prevent unwanted weight gain. The following tips can help you keep the pounds off: Count calories. Eating and drinking fewer calories helps you prevent weight gain. Stock the refrigerator and pantry with fruits, ...

How to prevent weight gain?

Count calories. Eating and drinking fewer calories helps you prevent weight gain. Stock the refrigerator and pantry with fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Plan for every meal to have the right mix of starches, fruits and vegetables, proteins, and fats. Generally, experts recommend that meals consist of half non starchy vegetable, one-quarter protein and one quarter a starch such as rice or a starchy vegetable such as corn or peas.

What medications help regulate blood glucose levels?

Some diabetes medications that help regulate blood glucose levels — including metformin (Fortamet, Glucophage, others), exenatide (Byetta), liraglutide (Victoza), albiglutide (Tarzeum), dula glutide (Trulicity), sitagliptin (Januvia), saxagliptin (Onglyza), canagliflozin (Invokana), dapagliflozin (Farxiga), empagliflozin (Jardiance) and pramlintide (Symlin) — may promote weight loss and enable you to reduce your insulin dosage. Ask your doctor if these or other medications would be appropriate as part of your diabetes treatment plan.

What happens when you take insulin?

When you take insulin, glucose is able to enter your cells, and glucose levels in your blood drop. This is the desired treatment goal. But if you take in more calories than you need to maintain a healthy weight — given your level of activity — your cells will get more glucose than they need. Glucose that your cells don't use accumulates as fat.

Can you lose weight with insulin?

Don't skip or reduce your insulin dosages to ward off weight gain. Although you might shed pounds if you take less insulin than prescribed, the risks are serious. Without enough insulin, your blood sugar level will rise — and so will your risk of diabetes complications. Sept. 17, 2020. Show references.

Can you maintain weight while taking insulin?

This can be frustrating because maintaining a healthy weight is an important part of your overall diabetes management plan. The good news is that it is possible to maintain your weight while taking insulin.

Can insulin help with weight gain?

Insulin and weight gain often go hand in hand, but weight control is possible. If you need insulin therapy, here's how to minimize — or avoid — weight gain.

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