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Weight gain

Discussion in 'Type 1 Diabetes' started by spage, Nov 14, 2019.

  1. spage

    spage LADA · Well-Known Member

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    Since starting insulin 3 weeks ago I’ve gained 5 lbs.

    I’ma weight watchers member that was below goal and maintaining.

    could the weight gain be linked and what’s the best way to get this under control. Doctor said lose weight so I did last yr now I’ve developed a stronger diagnosis and on insulin I’m gaining it back
     
  2. NicoleC1971

    NicoleC1971 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    5lbs isn't huge but must be annoying for you having worked hard to follow doc's orders and lose it!
    Insulin enables more of the carbohydrate you eat to be stored as body fat so yes there is a link between insulin and weight gain. The gain may not go on forever unless you take more and more insulin and become resistant to it.
    Rather than dropping points/calories in response I would suggest eating less carbohydrate and more protein/fat provided you talk to a Dsn about reducing insulin in proportion so that you don't go hypo. Another factor would be snacking freuquently - everytime your body uses insulin it signals to your liver to stop turning body fat into energy.
    I am guessing you may still have a little insulin of your own|?
    Another thing that will help in the medium to long term is to do exercise with weights in order to keep your body sensitive to the insulin you do need.
     
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  3. EllieM

    EllieM Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    I'd second the low (or at least lowish) carb suggestion. Unfortunately high blood sugars plus lots of insulin results in weight gain, so the only way I've found to keep mine under control is to keep my basal as low as possible, which means exercise plus not too many carbs. It's unfortunately a common symptom of T1 diabetes. But whatever you do don't go the diabulimia route (skip insulin to lose weight). It's better to carry a few extra kilos and keep normal blood sugars than to lose weight and risk DKA plus diabetic complications.

    Good luck.

    ps I'm guessing weight watchers are low fat high carb? I'd recommend the T2 LCHF route, high carbs lead to excess insulin leads to weight gain....
     
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  4. Juicyj

    Juicyj Type 1 · Moderator
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    Hello @spage I second what's been said above, from my knowledge WW is low fat/high carb, so the more carbs you eat the more insulin you need to take, I eat low-ish carb/high fat diet to avoid weight gain, so omitting grains/rice/pasta/bread/root veges for fat, nuts, salads, soups, eggs, protein. Unfortunately for an insulin dependent diabetic WW is not so user friendly, I found the same with Slimming World - I didn't lose weight with them I gained it !

    Any changes to your insulin need to be checked with your healthcare team as you're newly diagnosed they would want to keep a close eye on you.
     
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  5. becca59

    becca59 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    And just to balance things out my weight has remained steady nearly 6 years after diagnosis. I lost shed loads at the time and put back a few pounds that I really needed to as I recovered. As I looked haggard! It has then remained stable and is still a stone lighter than it had been before I became ill. I do not ultra low carb but am measured in what I eat, and how much I put on my plate. Mainly because my taste buds have changed. I swim regularly and am very active in everyday life. I do not believe that everyone will put on weight just because they inject insulin. I am proof of that.
     
  6. becca59

    becca59 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    To just point out the daily recommendation for carbs is 225g which is for my regime about 30 units of bolus taking into account the different ratios for time of day. (Everyone will be different) Which for me isn’t far off. (I do 1-4 in the morning. 1-2 in the middle of the day and 1-1 at the end.) We need to look at how many carbs we are actually putting on our plate. If I was taking more than 30 units of insulin a day then yes I would put on weight because I would be eating too many.
     
  7. Stephen Lewis

    Stephen Lewis Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I am T2 but was put on insulin in February 2018. I gained 25 lbs in 4 months as my insulin dose increased from 32 units to 68 units a day. I started a low carb diet, reduced the insulin after 6 months to zero and I have now lost nearly 45 lbs 15 months later.
    I realize T1s have different issues and that we are all different in how we react to diet, medication and exercise but in my case insulin caused a weight gain. As my waist size also increased by 6 in. I suspect this was 'bad' fat that the liver uses to create glucose when the bg level drops. This creates a closed spiral of insulin - more weight - more glucose - more insulin - more weight - more glucose etc. etc. Great for big pharma but not for us.
    My understanding is that as a T1 you will need the insulin and therefore carbs but as mentioned above keep the carbs at a level to balance the insulin and exercise so that there are few excess carbs to convert to fat.
     
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