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Medical Conditions & Factors That May Affect Your Weight


Weighty Warning

The rate of Type 2 diabetes in the United States is skyrocketing, partially due to the increase in obesity. More than 18.2 million adults—or 6.3 percent of the U.S. population—have Type 2 diabetes. If you already have Type 2 diabetes, the closer you get to your ideal size, the more likely it is that your health will improve. If you don't have diabetes, reaching your ideal size will lower your risk for having this health condition.

Diabetes and weight gain share an unfortunate symbiotic relationship. Sixty-seven percent of adults with Type 2 diabetes have a BMI of 27 or higher, which means they're overweight. Type 2 diabetes was once called adult onset diabetes because a person is not born with it; rather, you develop it as an adult. Diabetes in children has increased ten-fold in the past 20 years, so the term, adult onset diabetes, has been dropped. People who are overweight or obese are at high risk of developing this disease. If for no other reason, you should get your weight down to reduce your risk.

Type 2 diabetics who regulate their blood-sugar levels with diet and not with insulin can often more easily reach their ideal size. If you are using insulin to control blood-sugar levels, approach any weight-loss program carefully with close monitoring of your blood-sugar levels. That way, you'll avoid insulin levels that are too high. Too much insulin in the body causes weight gain.

Birth Control Pills

Birth control pills have been known to cause weight gain—sometimes a little, sometimes a lot—in many women. Fortunately, the hormone dosage in today's birth control pills is lower than ever before and should not be a big factor in weight gain. With that said, however, you could still be gaining weight by using them. If this is the case, talk with your doctor to find a formulation that reduces weight gain.

The birth control shots and systems that last for three months at a time are more problematic. They can wreak havoc with your hormones and add on the pounds. Think carefully about whether the three-month formulations are worth the weight. Yes, they're convenient, but are they necessary? Find another method if you are battling an increase in weight while using this method.


Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Healthy Weight Loss © 2005 by Lucy Beale and Sandy G. Couvillon. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit the Idiot's Guide web site or call 1-800-253-6476.

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