Is Unexplained Weight Loss Dangerous For Diabetics? What Are The Reasons For Weight Loss in Diabetes Patients??

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Dr. Pakhi Sharma, MBBSGeneral Physician, 6+ Years
Published On : 28-Dec-2021Read Time : 3 minutes
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Diabetics usually face insufficient insulin that prevents the body from getting glucose. Eventually, the body begins burning muscle and fat for energy. This phenomenon is called sudden diabetic weight loss. But what type of diabetes causes drastic weight loss? How do you know a diabetic is losing weight? Let’s dive deep into some of the unknown facts of unexplained weight loss in diabetes.

While there could be many reasons for sudden weight loss, diabetes is among the most popular. Both- type 1 and type 2 diabetes, among other signs and symptoms, may be associated with unusual weight loss in patients.

Contents:
  • Causes of Weight Loss Due to Diabetes
  • What Type of Diabetes Can Cause Weight loss?
  • Medications For Sudden Weight Loss In Diabetics
  • Diet For Diabetes Weight Loss
  • Exercise For Diabetes Weight Loss
  • Other Symptoms of Diabetic Weight Loss
  • When To See a Doctor?
  • Don’t Have Time To Read?
  • FAQs

Causes of Weight Loss Due to Diabetes

Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes are either characterised by low levels of insulin production or low responsiveness of our body towards sufficient insulin levels.

Insulin serves to transport glucose from the blood to all the body tissues and cells for energy production. In diabetes, the blood sugar levels remain high, but the tissues and cells fail to absorb glucose from the blood. 

There are two reasons for unexplainable weight loss among diabetics:

  1. Without glucose to provide energy, the cells and tissues start eating up deposited fat tissue and muscle mass to fulfil energy requirements. 
  2. Excess blood sugars are channelled out of the body through urine resulting in loss of calories.

What Type of Diabetes Can Cause Weight loss?

People often ask, does diabetes cause weight loss or search online for answers to weight loss in diabetes, and whether type 1 or type 2 diabetes can cause weight loss. The answer is that both type 1 and type 2 diabetes can cause weight loss, though it is more common in type 1 diabetes. 

Children with type 1 diabetes are often brought to physicians by parents who feel their child has become leaner. Weight loss with type 2 diabetes is also associated with more complications.

Medications For Sudden Weight Loss In Diabetics

If diabetes is one of the significant weight-loss reasons, insulin is prescribed. Other drugs such as metformin may also be prescribed to patients depending on the type of diabetes, its course, and patient history. Once the blood sugar levels are controlled, it becomes easier to control weight loss.

Other Symptoms of Diabetic Weight Loss

  • Dehydration
  • Excessive thirst, hunger, and urination
  • Itchy or dark skin
  • Increased infections and slo

When To See a Doctor?

It is advisable to see a doctor as soon as you notice unexpected weight loss that may manifest as a change in clothing size, lethargy, and weakness. Unintentional weight loss is loss of greater than 5% of body weight in 6-12 months without any interventions. 

In the absence of weight loss symptoms, consider visiting a doctor if you experience the above-mentioned symptoms. Remember, the earlier the diagnosis is made, the easier it is to control diabetes and make lifestyle changes

Don’t Have Time To Read?

  • Unintentional weight loss is a symptom of type 1 or 2 diabetes.
  • Weight loss occurs because the body fails to absorb enough glucose in the absence of insulin. Unabsorbed glucose is passed out in the urine resulting in loss of calories.
  • Both type 1 and type 2 diabetes can cause rapid weight loss. Controlling blood sugar levels can help reduce weight loss.
  • Take medicines such as insulin and metformin to regulate blood sugar levels as guided by the physician. Avoid taking medicines that cause vomiting or dehydration.
  • Exercise regularly to fit in the calories and increase the body’s responsiveness towards the existing insulin production.
  • Watch out for other symptoms like increased infections, dark skin, dehydration, excessive thirst, and excessive urine production that may signal diabetes.
  • Visit a doctor if you notice the above signs or unintended weight loss of more than 5% of your body weight within 6-12 months.
  • Use Phable Care App to consult India's leading diabetologists, order medicines, book lab tests, integrate Accu-Chek instant and other devices to get real-time remote care from the comfort of your home. Let's treat diabetes together.

Frequently Asked Questions

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