How Weight Loss Surgery Remedies Your Type 2 Diabetes

Mar 15, 2023

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How Weight Loss Surgery Remedies Your Type 2 Diabetes

People who are obese are six times more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes than those who maintain a healthy weight. Obesity and Type 2 diabetes independently increase your chance of developing heart disease; having both only raises the risk.

If you struggle with obesity and Type 2 diabetes, you may be surprised to learn that you can overcome both with weight loss surgery.

Most people find that their blood sugar improves within days of weight loss surgery. But that’s not the only encouraging news. Type 2 diabetes goes into remission for 92% of people who have weight loss surgery.

Amir Mehran, MD, FACS, FASMBS, at University Bariatrics in Thousand Oaks and Northridge, California, specializes in the minimally invasive weight loss procedures proven to treat Type 2 diabetes. 

Here, he explains the weight loss procedures and how they achieve such dramatic results.

Weight loss procedures that treat Type 2 diabetes

We frequently perform two types of weight loss surgery — sleeve gastrectomy and gastric bypass — that treat Type 2 diabetes by balancing blood sugar and potentially putting the disease into remission.

Sleeve gastrectomy

The stomach is often described as shaped like a J, with a short curve on the innermost side and a long curve on the outer side. When we perform a sleeve gastrectomy, we remove the outer portion, eliminating about 80% of the stomach and leaving a small banana-shaped tube.

The remaining tube allows food to pass from your esophagus, through the stomach, and into the small intestine. Having a small stomach means you feel full after eating a small amount of food.

Gastric bypass

We make an incision across the top of your stomach, leaving a small pouch for food and separating the bulk of the stomach from the pouch. The tiny pouch holds a small amount of food at one time, limiting how much you eat.

Then we cut the small intestine into two and connect the bottom half to the new pouch. As a result, food bypasses the upper part of the small intestine. That means you absorb even fewer calories than those you take into the stomach pouch, resulting in significant weight loss.

How weight loss surgery remedies Type 2 diabetes

Sleeve gastrectomy and gastric bypass dramatically improve Type 2 diabetes through three actions:

Losing weight

Weight loss alone can lower your blood sugar and improve Type 2 diabetes. Excess weight raises blood levels of fatty acids, hormones, and inflammation-causing substances that cause insulin resistance and Type 2 diabetes.

Eliminating stomach hormones

Your stomach releases hormones affecting hunger, blood sugar, and metabolism. These hormones are produced in the part of the stomach removed during sleeve gastrectomy and gastric bypass procedures.

After your surgery, the hormone levels decrease and your metabolism changes, allowing blood sugar to return to normal. Type 2 diabetes improves rapidly after bariatric surgery, often before you lose weight.

Balancing gut hormones

If you have a gastric bypass, you may gain another advantage over Type 2 diabetes. Sending food directly into the lower part of the small intestine boosts the production of hormones and other substances that improve insulin levels and help your body overcome Type 2 diabetes.

To learn more about weight loss surgery and its ability to put Type 2 diabetes into remission, contact University Bariatrics, serving the greater Los Angeles area, by phone or online today.