One out of every five type 2 diabetes patients is morbidly obese, a new U.S. study has claimed.
The study conducted by Loyola University Health System has found that 62.4 percent of U.S. adults with Type 2 diabetes are obese, while 20.7 percent are morbidly obese.
Among African American adults with Type 2 diabetes, 1 in 3 is morbidly obese, the study showed.
Dr. Holly Kramer, associate professor in the Department of Medicine, Division of Nephrology at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine, who headed the study, said: "The rate of morbid obesity among people with diabetes is increasing at a very alarming rate, and this has substantial public health implications."
The researchers studied the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys, completed during the years 1976 to 2006, to reach the conclusion.
Morbid obesity is defined as having a body mass index (BMI) greater than 40. BMI is a measure of body fat based on height and weight. For example, a 5-foot-2-inch adult with a 40 BMI weighs 218 pounds (82 pounds overweight), while a 6-foot-2-inch adult with a 40 BMI weighs 311 pounds (117 pounds overweight).
Kramer insisted that focusing solely on overall obesity rates "hinders the complete comprehension of this massive public health problem," as the greatest growth in obesity has been among diabetics who are morbidly obese.
Kramer further suggested that consumption of inexpensive food and sugary soda were the reasons behind the situation.
Experts recommended stomach-stapling gastric bypass surgery as the last resort for morbidly obese diabetics.
The study was published online in the Journal of Diabetes and its Complications.