What about those with diabetes or kidney disease?
How much weight loss can be reasonable?
There has been a lot of confusion about whether a person can get enough weight back on without gaining a lot of weight. It is important to understand that the amount a person loses can’t always be controlled.
In people with diabetes or kidney disease it is very hard to keep to any weight loss that doesn’t increase their risk of developing type 2 diabetes. It is estimated that 30% of people with diabetes and almost 30% of people with kidney disease are unable to lose any more weight, or are gaining weight.
There is no way of knowing whether a diet can be considered healthy or not, and people should think about their needs for food and how they can make changes to their diets to support their health. What works for us for the rest of our lives may not work for you.
Can eating unhealthy food cause bad health? How so?
It is not known for sure how harmful eating unhealthy food can be to health. There has been evidence to suggest that the increased consumption of processed foods is linked to an increased risk of developing types 2 diabetes, but this link has not been established for whole food products.
The research which shows that people who eat a lot of sugary drinks have a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes (the “Sweet tooth hypothesis”) is based on studies in people who were unable to reduce their sugar consumption.
These are different to most studies which have looked at dietary factors (such as food consumption or exercise) in people without diabetes to develop a link with type 2 diabetes. However, such studies do show that people who have type 2 diabetes are likely to have unhealthy diets.
Is eating less sugar really healthier for people with diabetes?
Most people report eating about 20–30% of carbohydrates as sugar, with most carbs derived from added sugar (i.e. foods containing sugar added to food).
However, the evidence is mixed on how much sugar is healthy because the amount people eat varies greatly. Some studies have found that individuals who consume less sugar have some health benefits, but others have found that increasing their sugar intake, and increasing the amount of sugar added to food, can actually raise blood sugar levels.
Therefore, it is not clear whether there are benefits or harms from low, medium and high sugar consumption. Eating too much sugar is likely to lead to problems such as being overweight or gaining weight, a higher risk of cancer