Type 2 Diabetes Weight Loss Basics

Losing weight with type 2 diabetes is essential if you're overweight or obese. Weight loss can help you control your type 2 diabetes, manage your blood glucose levels, lower your cholesterol, and decrease your blood pressure.

Although not everyone with type 2 diabetes needs to lose weight, if you do, our Exercise Center is a fantastic place to kickstart your weight loss goals.

But losing weight with type 2 diabetes is about taking it one small step at a time. It takes time to develop healthy lifestyle changes. Once you do, you'll recognize how worthwhile they are.

For example, reduce your portion sizes for a few months. Once you get used to doing that, then you can move on to your next goal, which may be to start exercising. For tips on how to get started with exercise, check out our article on starting an exercise program with diabetes.

Below are some tips on small ways that have big impacts when it comes to losing weight with type 2 diabetes.

  • Celebrate small goals: Even if you only lose 5 pounds, that's an accomplishment! Instead of food, reward yourself with a new outfit or pair of gym shoes. This will encourage you to continue your journey to wellness.
  • Focus on positive changes: Morph unhealthy habits into healthy ones. For example, if you don't really eat vegetables often, try to eat at least one vegetable a day. Visit our Diabetic Recipes Center to learn how to make veggies taste delicious at every meal.
  • Set realistic goals: Being realistic about your goals, such as how much weight to lose and how to do it, is essential. Set yourself up for success by being honest with yourself.
  • Stay on track: It'll take some time getting used to your new healthier habits, but it's definitely worth it. Log what you eat at each meal and how much exercise you do in a journal.

You can work with a registered dietitian or certified diabetes educator to help you plan—and achieve—your goals.

Once you get used to your new, healthier habits, you'll see that losing weight with type 2 diabetes can be simple. All you need to do is concentrate on the small successes that will boost your health.

Updated on: June 22, 2016
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Diabetes: Beginning an Exercise Plan