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Learn about a host of diabetes-related topics such as how many Americans suffer from this disease to how to easily adjust to a new diet after diagnoses. This section will provide you with the information you need to make informed dietary decisions regarding diabetes.

Type 2 Diabetes and Weight Loss

Type 2 diabetes and obesity continue to be rising health concerns in America. Making healthy lifestyle choices for successful weight loss can help prevent or manage diabetes.


Type 2 diabetes and obesity continue to be rising health concerns in America. What’s more, approximately 85 percent of people with type 2 diabetes are considered overweight or obese. This translate to nearly nine out of 10 individuals!

However, type 2 diabetes can be prevented, controlled, and even reversed with weight loss. Find out how to prevent type 2 diabetes and lose the weight once and for all with lifestyle changes.

What Is Type 2 Diabetes?

Diabetes is a chronic disease that affects the way the body utilizes sugar or glucose. This is mostly related to the absence or resistance to the hormone insulin.

Insulin assists in glucose utilization, allowing its entry from the blood and into the cells following carbohydrate consumption. So when insulin function is compromised, glucose starts to build up in the blood, hence having "high blood sugar."

There are two types of diabetes, including types 1 and 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes accounts for about 90 percent of all diabetes diagnosis.

Specific to type 2 diabetes, the body resists the effects of insulin. This is known as insulin resistance, a condition in which cells do not respond well to insulin. This makes it difficult for cells to take up glucose the blood. With insulin resistance, individuals often gain weight easier but have a difficult time losing it.

Risk factors of type 2 diabetes include family history, race, and age. Unhealthy lifestyle factors such as poor diet choices and being sedentary also increase the risk of weight gain.

That being said, overweight and obese individuals are at risk of developing diabetes and other comorbidities. But not all overweight individuals develop diabetes and not all type 2 diabetics are overweight.

However, people who carry weight in the abdominal region are also more likely to develop diabetes. They also have a greater risk of insulin resistance compared to those with more fat stores in the hips and thighs.

Type 2 Diabetes and Weight Loss Tips

One of the first things one can do is make a weight loss goal. Health experts suggest even losing five to 10 percent of current body weight can be beneficial for diabetes prevention and management.

For instance, if you currently weigh 200 pounds, try losing 10 to 20 pounds. However, it is important to not get so tangled up and overwhelmed with this number. Instead, make small goals that lead to sustainable and large rewards.

Losing one to two pounds per week is often recommended. A primary care provider can also assist in a providing a personalized weight loss target. Unless warranted by the doctor and under medical supervision, quick weight loss is not endorsed.

Nonetheless, making healthy lifestyle choices for successful weight loss can help prevent diabetes or manage the condition.

1. Balanced Diet

Diet plays a huge role, if not the largest, in weight loss and diabetes management. Individuals should focus on consuming a well-balanced diet to ensure nutritional needs are being met.

This includes incorporating more whole grains, fruits, vegetables, lean and plant-based proteins, milk and dairy products, and healthy fat sources. Also limit the intake of highly processed products laden in refined flour, sugar, oil, and salt.

Balance a meal plate with by first filling half with non-starchy veggies. Fill a quarter with a lean protein, and another quarter with a whole grain or starchy vegetable. Also complement with a healthy fat source and fruit as desired. This balance naturally keeps calories in check with offering adequate nutrients.

2. Exercise

Exercise helps manage diabetes and blood sugars. Active muscles help utilize sugar for energy, rather than building up in the bloodstream.

Being physically active also complements a balanced diet for weight control. The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) suggests the following guidelines related to weight control:

• Prevent Weight Gain: 150 to 250 minutes per week of moderate-intensity physical activity is associated with weight gain prevention.

• Weight Loss: Greater than 150 minutes per week is associated with moderate weight loss. More than 250 minutes is shown to provide clinically significant weight loss.

• Weight Maintenance: Some evidence suggests greater than 250 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity will increase weight loss compared to diet alone.

These recommendations align similarly to the recommendations set by the American Heart Association. The AHA encourage participating in at least 150 minutes of aerobic activity each week. Cardio exercises include brisk walking, jogging, biking, and swimming, or any type of activity that elevates heart rate.

Also include at least two to three weight and resistance training sessions per week, focusing on the major muscle groups. Strength training builds and maintains lean muscle, in turn accelerating metabolism and supporting a healthy weight.

3. Practicing Stress Management

Not only can high and chronic stress increase blood sugars, but impede on weight loss goals.

During times of stress, the body tends to store fuel and energy, slow down metabolism, and dump out cortisol. These compounding consequences can make it more difficult to lose weight and lead to weight gain.

Stress also increases the risk of stress in emotional eating. Instead of turning to foods and other negative practices as a coping mechanism, try other stress-management techniques. Practice stress management with exercise, yoga, or meditation.

4. Sleep

The importance of rest should not be slept on…

Sleep loss can lead to weight gain in a number of ways. Sleep deprivation dysregulates hunger hormones, making it easier to overeat. There are also heightened food cravings to high-carb and fat foods. Energy levels and metabolic processes are also reduced.

Mitigate such weight gain risks by sleeping the recommended seven to nine hours on a regular basis. Practice sleep hygiene by staying consistent with sleep and wake times. Also reduce screen time leading up to bedtime and confide caffeine to the morning and afternoon hours.

Diabetic Meal Plans from BistroMD

Lose weight, manage diabetes, and get control of your life with the nation’s leading weight loss meal delivery service!

BistroMD was founded by Dr. Caroline Cederquist and husband Ed Cederquist. Dr. Cederquist is a board certified and experienced in the field of weight loss. Husband, Ed Cederquist, is a renowned foodie and committed to utilizing the freshest and highest quality ingredients for each meal.

A team of dietitians and chefs ensure balanced and flavorful meals designed for weight loss and diabetic management. Each meal supplies 1,100 to 1,400 calories daily with 40 to 50 percent total caloric intake from adequate protein, 20 to 25 percent of calories from healthy fats, and 30 to 35 percent from complex carbohydrates.

With the bistroMD diabetic program, meals supply 25 net grams of carbs or less and snacks supply 15 or less. Meals and snacks also deliver adequate protein. Eating these meals and snacks every 3 to 4 hours helps control blood sugars. It also helps prevent metabolism from slowing down and keep hunger stable.

Diabetic-friendly options include a caramelized mushroom and onion frittata,, sliced ham with mustard maple sauce, and southwest bison meatloaf with smoky tomato glaze. Truly, diabetic-friendly meals have never been so flavorful or convenient!

Written By Sarah Asay, RDN. Published on November 07, 2012. Updated on March 25, 2019.


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