How To Lose Belly Fat When Living with Type 2 Diabetes
Of course genetics play a role in our health. They give us the genes that predispose us to a certain hair color, eye color, even height. But did you know that they also affect our body shape? You may have heard that body shape is important when thinking about health risks. Let’s see how your body shape could be affecting you.
Different body shapes and belly fat
There are two different body shapes that are used when discussing health risks: apple and pear. An apple-shaped body carries extra weight through the middle of the body, right in the abdomen. A pear-shaped body carries the weight lower, through the hips, leaving a smaller waistline. So which do you think is healthier? If you guessed pear, you are correct! An apple-shaped body puts you at higher risk for cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
Diabetes complications from too much belly fat
If you already have diabetes, there are still reasons to decrease your abdominal fat. “An excess of belly fat ups your risk for numerous health problems, including heart disease, colon cancer, sleep apnea, and type 2 diabetes. For people who already have diabetes, complications such as blindness and heart trouble are more likely with too much abdominal fat.”1 Two studies were done that also showed that people with diabetes and excess abdominal fat were also at higher risk for kidney disease.2 This is a problem as people with diabetes are already at high risk for kidney disease. “Diabetes is the most common cause of kidney disease. If you have an abundance of fat concentrated in your midsection, you have a higher risk for diabetic kidney disease, the study authors conclude."2
How to lose belly fat with type 2 diabetes
Although genetics plays a large role in where we gain weight, losing weight can still be helpful in decreasing your risks of heart disease and other diabetes complications. Here are some tips for trying to lose some weight. Even overall weight loss should lead to some abdominal shrinking. Here are a few tips when trying to lose weight.
Increase physical activity
Any increase in your activity level should help lead to weight loss. Be sure to speak with your physician before starting a fitness regimen. Simple ways to up your exercise may be taking small walks around the block or through the mall.
Make healthier eating choices
Watch portion sizes
Remember that a serving of chicken should be the size and thickness of a deck of cards, your portion of pasta should be about the size of the front of your clenched fist, and one cup of non-starchy vegetables should be the size of a baseball.
You may not be able to change your body’s shape, but you can decrease the amount of abdominal fat leading to a decrease in diabetes complications!
Do you live with any sleep disorders (eg. insomnia, sleep apnea, RLS) in addition to your diabetes?