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Why Unwanted Weight Loss Occurs in Diabetics

by Suresh, 11 Dec 2023

Diabetes patients who experience a considerable and unplanned loss of body weight are said to have unintended weight loss. According to polls, between 10 and 20 % of diabetic people lose weight unintentionally at some point while managing their illness. This article will explain why patients with diabetes have a sudden loss of weight that is not brought on by dieting or exercise.

Why Do Patients With Diabetes Lose Weight?

Diabetes weight loss can be caused by a single component or a combination of variables, including insufficient insulin production or utilisation, an accelerated metabolism, frequent urination, calorie loss, and decreased appetite. Unintentional weight loss may also be a sign of undiscovered problems, inadequate medicine or insulin levels, poor food, or other management-related difficulties. It might also be a sign of other severe medical issues that demand immediate care.

Contributing Factors to Unwanted Weight Loss

Here are a few possible causes of unintended weight loss in people with diabetes:

1.Ineffective glycemic control Loss of weight may result from persistently elevated blood sugar levels. This occurs because the body turns to destroying stored fat and muscle tissue for energy when glucose cannot be adequately absorbed by the cells, leading to weight loss.

2.Insulin deficit or resistance: Type 1 diabetes is characterised by insufficient insulin production, which prevents the body from adequately using glucose. Insulin resistance develops in type 2 diabetes, making it difficult for cells to respond to insulin and absorb glucose. Losing weight can occur in either scenario.

3.Excessive calorie excretion: It's possible that elevated blood sugar levels can result in polyuria, or excessive urine, which causes calorie and fluid loss. This calorie excretion may help people lose weight.

4.Cutting back on calories: Diabetics frequently lament their lack of appetite. This causes a reduction in calorie intake, which therefore causes weight loss. Gastroparesis can also be brought on by diabetes. It is a disorder that interferes with food passing through the stomach easily. It may be a side effect of diabetes and cause delayed stomach emptying and decreased appetite, which will cause weight loss.

5.Higher metabolic rate: Uncontrolled diabetes and hyperglycemia can result in a higher metabolic rate, which causes the body to burn more calories while at rest. This rise in calorie consumption may result in unintended weight reduction.

6.Stress and emotional variables: People with diabetes may unintentionally lose weight due to stress and emotional factors like depression or anxiety, which can impact appetite and eating habits.

People with diabetes who experience unwelcome weight loss must speak with their healthcare team to determine the underlying causes of the weight loss and create a management strategy to stop it while maintaining overall health.

Diabetes-related undesired weight loss symptoms and warning signs:

It is crucial to exercise caution while dealing with typical symptoms that can result in undesirable weight loss in diabetes. These include:

Why Diabetes Makes You Pay Attention to Unwanted Weight Loss?

Even in healthy individuals, rapid weight loss is concerning. However, it's important for people with diabetes to avoid weight loss for a number of reasons.

Could Lead to Hypoglycemia

Maintaining a healthy weight is crucial to managing diabetes. Unintentional weight loss can cause muscle atrophy and a decrease in the body's glycogen reserves. Between meals and when exercising, stored glucose called glycogen is essential for regulating blood sugar levels. Hypoglycemia is more likely to occur when glycogen levels are depleted.

Imbalanced Hormone Control

Weight loss can disturb the balance of several hormones involved in metabolism, especially when it happens quickly or involves a large reduction in calorie intake. The regulation of hunger, energy balance, and glucose metabolism are all greatly influenced by hormones like leptin, ghrelin, adiponectin, and cortisol. These hormones' levels can change as a result of unwanted weight loss.

Loss of Muscle

Both muscle mass and fat can be lost as a result of unintentional weight reduction. Because it is metabolically active, muscle tissue is essential for preserving good metabolic health. The body burns fewer calories at rest and lacks metabolic control when muscle mass is decreased, which causes the resting metabolic rate to drop.


Numerous studies have concluded that unintended weight loss in people with diabetes can have a severe effect on their quality of life by resulting in fatigue, weakness, lowered physical and mental functioning, and decreased mobility.

Nutritional Deficiency

Inadequate calorie absorption is frequently a factor in the disease. Studies show that nutritional deficiencies, such as those in vitamins, minerals, and vital fatty acids, can result from the body not receiving enough nutrients, as in diabetes.


The management of diabetes in its whole is essential for general health and wellbeing. Diabetes is a chronic disease that needs constant monitoring and care. People can dramatically lower their risk of problems and enhance their quality of life by controlling their diabetes well. Unwanted weight loss is an indication of diabetes and can have serious effects and repercussions on a person's health. As a result, it's crucial to be ready and get medical help if you notice any symptoms.