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Obesity and Weight Management

Question

10/30/2006

Question:

My daughter is 42 years old, a top executive at a Fortune 500 company, but obese. My question: Assuming I can get her to use urosticks or get glucose tested frequently, does anybody know how long, after glycosuria is first detected, it takes for the pancreatic beta cells to burn out. I suspect that it would be too late for the "diet and exercise" regimen and that something like lap-band surgery would be more effective in effecting immediate and sustained weight loss. Help!

Answer:

More information is needed to accurately answer your question. The first, has your daughter been diagnosed with diabetes mellitus by a physician? Second, has she been experiencing glycosuria that you are aware of? Third, does she have any other risk factors for diabetes besides obesity (family history, high blood pressure, fairly inactive, high cholesterol levels, etc.)?

According to the Diabetes Prevention Program, a federally funded study, people can delay and possibly prevent the onset of diabetes by losing 5 to 7 percent of their total body weight through 30 minutes of physical activity, 5 days a week and healthier eating. Suppose your daughter weighs 200 pounds; this would translate into a weight loss of 10-14 pounds to improve her risk for diabetes.

I would recommend your daughter follow up with her family physician for further information. He or she will be able to perform a urine glucose test to screen for diabetes, to confirm a diagnosis of diabetes, or to monitor diabetic control. Also, it is always best to speak with your doctor before beginning any diet or exercise regime.

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Response by:

Jaime  Ackerman Foster, MPH, RD, LD Jaime Ackerman Foster, MPH, RD, LD
Formerly,
Extension Nutrition Associate
College of Education and Human Ecology
The Ohio State University