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Weight control in diabetes

If you have diabetes and are overweight, treating the excess weight is also a central part of diabetes management.

Obesity refers to an excess of fat in the body. Its effect on health can be assessed from different points of view:

  • The amount of extra weight, i.e. the weight in kg or the body mass index (BMI)

  • The location of the extra weight, i.e. the waistline and the fatty degeneration of the liver

  • The way the extra weight affects your blood sugar, blood pressure and blood fat level

  • The way being overweight otherwise affects your physical or psychological health, such as sleep apnoea, osteoarthritis or mood

Successful dieting improves the sugar balance and other metabolic disorders related to obesity.

The general treatment of obesity is not significantly different for a person with diabetes.

The type of obesity treatment and its content are selected individually on the basis of the BMI:

  • Diet and exercise therapy

  • Other lifestyle management and weight control support

  • A very low-energy diet

  • Obesity drug therapy

  • Bariatric surgery

Essential obesity-related knowledge is available via the Current Care Guidelines regarding obesity (in Finnish). See The hub for weight management for information on practical implementation and self-care.

The following pages include information about the treatment of obesity from the viewpoint of type 2 and type 2 diabetes.

Updated 30.9.2023