Being overweight increases the chances of developing the common type of diabetes, type 2 diabetes. In this disease, the body makes enough insulin but the cells in the body have become resistant to the salutary action of insulin. A report in Science proposes that being overweight stresses the insides of individual cells. Specifically, overeating stresses the membranous network inside of cells called endoplasmic reticulum (ER). When the ER has more nutrients to process than it can handle, it sends out an alarm signal telling the cell to dampen down the insulin receptors on the cell surface. This translates to insulin resistance and to persistently high concentrations of the sugar glucose in the blood — one of the sure signs of diabetes.
Is There a Link Between Obesity and Diabetes?
Of the people diagnosed with type II diabetes, about 80 to 90 percent are also diagnosed as obese. This fact provides an interesting clue to the link between diabetes and obesity. Understanding what causes the disease will hopefully allow us to prevent diabetes in the future.
Being overweight places extra stress on your body in a variety of ways, including your body’s ability to maintain proper blood glucose levels. In fact, being overweight can cause your body to become resistant to insulin. If you already have diabetes, this means you will need to take even more insulin to get sugar into your cells. And if you don’t have diabetes, the prolonged effects of the insulin resistance can eventually cause you to develop the disease.
The increase in type 2 diabetes is closely linked to changes towards a western lifestyle (high-energy diets and reduced physical activity) and a rise in the prevalence of obesity. Obesity contributes to insulin resistance through several pathways such as an imbalance in certain hormones eg leptin resistance, reduced adiponectin, increased adipokines including increased concentrations of and activation of inflammatory pathways.
What is the major cause of obesity?
The environment plays a much larger role in a person’s likelihood of becoming obese than does any specific gene. By “environment,” we mean not only what the outside world does to a person’s body but also what enters a person’s body through eating and drinking. The two main factors that can cause obesity are a diet high in fat and a lack of exercise.
How can you know the calories and fat grams when you eat food from a fast-food place?
Most fast-food chains, such as Burger King, Subway, McDonalds, Taco Bell, and Domino’s Pizza have this information available for you on request. This information can also be obtained in small booklets that are available in some grocery stores, bookstores, through some organizations such as Weight Watchers, and by accessing Internet resources, including the ones listed at the end of this chapter.
What types of foods should you eat every day?
The most important guideline is to have a balanced diet. A balanced diet contains protein, grains, fruits and vegetables and only a small amount of fat. The majority of your diet should consist of carbohydrates (like whole grain bread, rice, cereal) and fruits and vegetables. The best types of meat are those that are low in fat, like chicken, fish, and lean red meats.