What is not always clear, to those struggling with their weight, is what it takes to cross the line from being a bit of a blob in a bathing costume, to being a type 2 diabetic.
Researchers from the University of Michigan Health System believe it is a simple numbers game.
The weight yo-yo
Most people with a weight problem will have experienced “fat years” and “thin years”.
Losing weight is unpleasant, but if you cut back on calories and/or use a few more, you will lose weight. Most diets work – in the short-term, but the problem with dieting is, well it starts with D-I-E, and living in a state of deprivation, on a long term basis, is not so easy.
So the weight that is lost creeps or climbs back on, as soon as normal patterns of eating are resumed.
Keeping a tally on the overall fat stockpiles
The Michigan based researchers tracked the yo-yo effect in 8000 young Americans over several years. Recording the fat years, as well as the thin years, to get a picture of how much fat had been stored in the fat cells over the years.
They found that people who had amassed the largest quantities of fat over the years, incurred the biggest risk.
Risk was not directly related to the level of fat in the moment, but historical fat deposits.
How to calculate your diabetes risk
The calculation is not too difficult.
A “fat” year, would be a year that your BMI was over 25.
The precise level of “fatness” would be your BMI – 25
So if you had a BMI of 35, you would collect 10 points, 35-25 = 10.
If you were this weight for 10 years, then you would collect a point for each year, leaving you with 10 points.
Combining these 2 figures gives you a risk of
10 X 10 = 100 years of excess BMI
The bigger this figure, the bigger your risk.
Beware of your fat bank account
The longer you have excess weight and the more of it you have, the bigger your problems.
Traditionally, being a little podgy has been something seen in middle aged adults, resulting in a diagnosis of diabetes in the latter years.
But, obesity is now common in little kids, so these little ones are filling up their fat stores far quicker than previous generations. So diabetes is striking earlier and earlier.
Diabetes kills ! And it doesn’t do it quickly – complications from diabetes can cause you to be blind, suffer kidney failure or lose a vital bit through amputation, plus it causes cardiovascular disease.
Stop dropping fat in the fat stash ASAP
Protect yourself and your family, by keeping those pounds off.
The secret to keeping the fat out of your adipocytes (fat cells) is to get your body chemistry right.
If you’re not sure where to begin, start by reining in your insulin levels. High insulin promotes fat storage !Excess Body Mass Index-Years, a Measure of Degree and Duration of Excess Weight, and Risk for Incident Diabetes. Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine (2011) J. M. Lee, A. Gebremariam, S. Vijan, J. G. Gurney.
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