Did You Know Bariatric Surgery Can Help Control Type 2 Diabetes?

If you’re overweight, losing weight can be hard. However, it’s vital for your long-term health, especially if you have Type 2 diabetes.

More than 34 million Americans have diabetes. Although anyone can develop blood sugar disorders, approximately 90% of Type 2 diabetes cases are due to excess body fat. Fortunately, if you have significant amounts of weight to lose and you have diabetes, bariatric surgery can help in multiple ways.

In fact, one bariatric surgery in particular — gastric bypass— actually leads to Type 2 diabetes remission in 78% of individuals. But the best part is the change often begins long before significant weight loss occurs.

Michael Sutker, MD, is a leading surgeon with offices in Dallas and McKinney, Texas. He’s dedicated to helping people reach their weight loss goals and improve their overall health. 

At his thriving practice, Dr. Sutker witnesses dramatic turnarounds in his Type 2 diabetes patients, even before the pounds start to melt away.

Controlling diabetes before weight loss even begins

Dr. Sutker performs several types of bariatric surgeries, and they all can lead to successful weight loss. However, a few of these surgical approaches can significantly impact Type 2 diabetes before weight loss even begins. 

For example, unlike other bariatric procedures, gastric bypass and duodenal switch surgeries cause a unique change in your digestive system and how your body digests nutrients. Specifically, after gastric bypass surgery, the small intestine spontaneously begins producing GLUT-1, a molecule that helps the body use glucose. 

GLUT-1 usually isn’t present in the adult small intestine. However, it starts producing this molecule after certain bariatric procedures, possibly in response to food bypassing most of the stomach and upper small intestine. 

These procedures provide results so dramatic that we’re starting to consider bariatric surgery a treatment for diabetes and for obesity if your body mass index (BMI) reaches 30, instead of the previously recommended 40.

Getting proven results once and for all

Approximately 90% of gastric bypass patients see significantly lower blood sugar levels and a reduced need for medication. Even more impressive, 78% of them experience remission, which means normal blood sugar levels and no need for medication. And, you can expect better results with a similar yet slightly more complex bariatric procedure, the duodenal switch, which boasts 85% remission rates

Sleeve gastrectomy also provides proven results but without bypassing the stomach. By altering the stomach size alone, patients can still see changes in gut hormones, which can help treat diabetes. With this procedure, remission rates are more than 60%

Keeping long-term Type 2 diabetes in check

Bariatric surgery can play a significant role in keeping Type 2 diabetes under control. However, lifestyle changes, such as losing weight, eating well, and engaging in physical activity, are still key to keeping Type 2 diabetes and other serious medical conditions at bay. 

Any form of bariatric surgery can help you lose large amounts of weight by controlling how much you can eat, but that’s only the beginning. Dr. Sutker also provides ongoing support, so you can make the necessary lifestyle changes needed throughout your weight loss journey.

For more information about bariatric surgery and Type 2 diabetes, book an appointment online or over the phone with the practice of Michael Sutker, MD, today.

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