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Losing Weight with Type 1 Diabetes

Hey!  I am 22 with type 1 diabetes.  I was just diagnosed two years ago.  My concern is this:  I am getting married in December, and have been wanting to lose weight, but can't seem to find a way to get it off!  Interestingly enough, I was scouting the web to see if there was anything on this topic, and found the message posted by lyn01 -- Funny, but I am having the EXACT same problem!  I exercise five times a week, with both cardio and weight training.  I eat healthy foods -- no pop, very little candy, low carbs, lots of vegetables and fruits -- but I still can't lose weight.  I want to lose about 10-15 pounds at the most.  Even though I have always exercised regularly, I decided to put a avid effort forth and have been faithfully working out for three months now, and have not lost ONE pound. I have actually gained three -- which I know is muscle -- but my clothes are not fitting better, I am not seeing results in the mirror and it just seems as if "the fat wants to stay!"  My A1C is a 6.4.  IS THERE ANYTHING I CAN DO?  I am getting really frustrated with the lack of results.  Thanks!
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Avatar universal
Dear chinalily,

Thank you so much for reaching out to JDRF. Your comments to others are also most welcome.

I am a volunteer and not a physician. I do agree with gg to get your thyroid checked. This is a very common problem. You may also want to ask your doctor or a specialist about PCOS (poly cycstic ovarian syndrome). The symptoms can be elevated bgl's despite large doses of insulin and the inability to lose weight. Women diagnosed with PCOS can become insulin-resistant.  From what I have heard, there is an oral medication called glucophage that is taken along with your insulin that has made a major difference with weight loss in some. One story that I have heard of is a woman that has lost 50 lbs. She only has 10 lbs. to meet her ideal weight.

chinalily, it sounds like the results have come from research with possible infertility and other issues, including diabetes, with good results. I realize that infertility is probably not an issue, but we do recieve the benefits of this research to further explain possible problems excisting with diabetes. I would recommend that you talk to your doctor about this possibility and look for additional comments from this website.

Please keep in touch and let us know how you are doing and what you find out. It will help many.

Best wish's on your marriage,
dm
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Thanks!

I had never thought about my thyroid -- it could definitely be an issue I should check out.  My case of dibetes is quite unique in many ways.  Right now, I weigh 150, but take 42 units of Lantus at night and I exchange 6 carbs for one unit of Humalog.  Doctors can't figure out why I have to take so much insulin to bring my blood sugars down -- When I was diagnosed with diabetes just two summers ago, I was hiking in the Grand Canyon and nearly died getting out.  I ended up in the ICU with a blood sugar reading of over 800!  Even then, they had me on an insulin drip and they couldn't get my blood sugars below 300.  (My A1C was at a 5.7, so they couldn't figure out how it hiked up to 800 in such a fast period of time...believe me, I am a mystery to doctors!) For the next six months, my readings were consistently at around 250 -- insulin just wasn't working.  The doctors then thought i was type 2, or a combo...tried all different drugs...but insulin didn't start "working" in my body until five months after my diagnosis.  You said that insulin is a "fat" hormone...could this be the reason?  Am I just destined to be at this unwanted weight forever?  I mean, seeing that I take so much to keep my sugars down, is that making it nearly impossible for me to lose the weight?  Doctors and dieticians have not been much help...they just tell me the same thing - "count your carbs and exercise."  Like I have said before, frustration!  But I might try out the WeightWatchers. That might be a possible solution.  Got any ideas regarding my situation now that you know a little bit more about my background?
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Chinalily,
I definitely would look into getting your thyroid checked ASAP.  I also think that boosting your metabolism with a program such as WeightWatchers would definitely benefit you.  You are certainly living proof that we are not all made the same!  Keep us posted with your progress!
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Hey Chinalily!  I am a Mom of a 16 year old girl who was diagnosed at the age of 21 months and I am also a volunteer with Medhelp and The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.  I am not a medical professional, so any information that I pass on to you should be verified with your healthcare team.  

I totally understand your frustration in this situation.  It is a very difficult one to change, but I believe that you can!  It really sounds as if you are doing everything possible to maintain a healthy diet and lifestyle (and your HA1C is terrific!).  There are a few things that come to mind that may be of some help to you.  First you need to understand that insulin stores fat in our bodies.  You need to make sure that you are not running too low as a result of too much insulin being administered.  Monitor your bg's to see if there is a pattern that indicates that you are low at a certain point during the day.  It's a good idea to track your numbers this way so that you can spot possible trouble areas.  Another possible cause could be your thyroid.  You should have it checked at least once a year to make sure that it is functioning properly.  One in three diabetics have some thyroid issues, so it is very important that this be ruled out as a possible cause of your inability to lose weight.  One last thought...have you considered joining WeightWatchers?  They really have a terrific program and would also give you the emotional support that will help you keep up the good work.  Their program focuses on increasing your metabolism by eating enough food, and the right foods to enable you to lose weight.  You may want to look into it.  You should check out the great recipes on their website and you don't have to join to do so.  They're at www.weightwatchers.com.  Another great place that you may want to go is the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation website at www.JDRF.org.  Being diagnosed just two years ago, I would like to encourage you to consider joining JDRF if you have not already done so.  We have been a part of the JDRF family for almost 15 years and have found it to be a great source for getting problems solved, sharing information with others and meeting other people that we have so much in common with.  
Please let us know how you make out and congratulations on your upcoming marriage.
Helpful - 0

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