Diabetes and obesity can both pose huge health threats, which makes managing your health even more difficult when you’re dealing with both. As if that wasn’t discouraging enough, for years we’ve heard that there is no cure for these health conditions. But weight loss surgery is proving that being diagnosed with these diseases doesn’t have to mean a lifelong struggle to achieve good health. For many patients, weight loss surgery can prevent or improve and even cure their type 2 diabetes.
How WLS Prevents Diabetes
If you’re at risk for developing type 2 diabetes, or are within the high-risk category of pre-diabetes, bariatric surgery could greatly decrease your odds of developing the disease. Studies have shown that weight loss surgery is an even better preventative measure than diet, exercise, and medication. In some cases, it has decreased the odds of developing type 2 diabetes by greater than 80 percent.
Weight loss surgery prevents diabetes in multiple ways. The weight loss achieved from surgery certainly helps to lower the risk of patients developing the disease, but it’s also believed that anatomical changes in the gut, those affecting metabolism and appetite, may also play a role.
Even though weight loss surgery has been seen as an effective preventative measure for type 2 diabetes, patients still need to meet the standard requirements of a qualified bariatric surgery candidates. This means in order to qualify, you must have a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or higher, or 35 or higher for those with a serious obesity-related condition such as diabetes or heart disease.
How WLS Improves Diabetes
The same weight loss and gastrointestinal changes that result in diabetes prevention are believed to help improve type 2 diabetes in patients who have already developed the disease. Weight loss surgery can effectively put the disease into remission. This can change the patient’s lifestyle and how they manage their diabetes. Patients who have recently developed the disease often see the most improvement after having surgery.
Many patients who once had to rely on pills in order to keep their blood sugar levels under control are able to keep their blood sugar controlled through diet restrictions alone after they’ve had weight loss surgery. If the disease is further along at the point of surgery, patients may be able to have complete resolution or they may be able to switch to regulating their blood sugar will pills instead of insulin.
Obesity and diabetes do not have to be a lifelong struggle. If you’re living with either, or are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes, weight loss surgery can cut your risk of developing the disease and could even put your diabetes into remission. If you’re ready to take control of your health andachieve your weight loss goals, Riverside Surgical & Weight Loss Center is here to help you.