The Role of Body Fat in Diabetes

The Role of Body Fat in Diabetes

It is an accepted medical fact that overweight and obese people are at much greater risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. We say developing because this disorder is often an acquired one and it is acquired due in large part to weight issues.

However, it was recently discovered that weight alone is not responsible for the rapidly increasing cases of Diabetes 2 in America. Doctors and researchers have also determined that body weight distribution also plays a major factor in the disorder.

The extra weight around the midsection, often called a beer belly or a spare tire, but in medical terms visceral adipose fat or simply abdominal fat, can play a role. For some reason that doctors and scientists do not completely understand, carrying extra weight in this area can dramatically increase the chances that an individual will become resistant to insulin, which is puts folks on the short road to diabetes. Insulin resistance can also significantly increase the risk of high blood pressure and heart disease.

In fact, the people who are at the greatest risk of being diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes are those who have a high body mass index (BMI), especially when it is coupled with an above average hip to waist-ratio or a pendulous stomach.

What exactly is the Body Mass Index?

Really it is nothing more than a number that is assigned based on your height and weight. That is, it tells you how much you should weigh if you stand so many inches tall. The technique is far from perfect, since it does not take into account things like body or muscle build. For example, most short, muscular athletes are considered overweight when measured by BMI, since muscle and fat are indistinguishable under the rules of BMI.

However, the Body Mass Index is a helpful guide for people who have average builds and are not too heavily muscled. According to the current numbers, a BMI of between 18.5 and 24.9 has been deemed normal and healthy. While anything above that top number is consider overweight, whereas anything belong the bottom one is said to be underweight.  As you might expect, the higher the number, the greater the fat, generally speaking, which means the greater the health risk.

Waist Size

For as long as we’ve worn clothes, people have been obsessing about the size of their waists, and maybe they finally have good reason to. The fact is that several studies have concluded that the size of your waist is a good indicator or predictor of diabetes.

While there is no set number, men are said to be at greater risk if their wear slacks that have a forty inch waist or more, and women are at risk if their pant size is over 35 inches. These folks have consistently been found to be at much greater risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.
Yet another popular indicator is waist-to-hip ratio. This is a particular concern for women who tend to store more fat around the hips than men, who commonly store their fat in their stomachs.

Why do people get fat around their midsection?

Well, the number one culprit is diet. As you may know, Americans have incredibly poor diets that include high amounts of sugars, fats, and carbohydrates; and when you combine these foods with an increasingly sedentary work environment, big screen televisions and the Internet, it is only a matter of time before fat appears in all the wrong places.

How to get rid of it?

The most common misconception with regards to abdominal fat is that it will magically deliquesce with a few hundred sit ups. This is patently false. The fact is that you cannot target weight loss…it doesn’t work that way. When dieters or athletes lose weight, they lose it all over their bodies, no matter how hard they work on particular part. So, don’t listen to late night infomercials—they lie to sell products.

If you really want to drop your spare tire, beer belly or love handles, the place to start is with a well-balanced cardiovascular workout that will get the heart pumping and the sweat flowing and will help you burn calories, because in the end that’s really what it’s all about—burning more calories than you consume.

When it comes to diet, incorporating more lean proteins like chicken and fish and removing carbohydrates (not all, but some), will help your body build more muscle while it eliminates fat.

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7 Comment(s)

Very useful to diabetic person like me and so many like myself. Thank you for this valuable information.
By: Santosh Kulkarni, MPKV, Rahuri. 9 years ago
this is very useful for a lay man to understand about odesity in scientific manner
By: vijay 9 years ago
Simply superb. kp best wishes
By: Whanmugilan 9 years ago
you must be living under a rock
By: bani 10 years ago
thsnk you for your information
By: 10 years ago
Hey thanks for sharing this article
By: Mike 10 years ago
Didn't know body fat has its benefits too.
By: Zack 10 years ago

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