An Anti-Obesity Day awareness initiative Type 2 diabetes mellitus is strongly associated with obesity. There is a significant correlation between type 2 diabetes mellitus and obesity, especially in older individuals. Awareness needs to be raised about these comorbidities and how they affect each other. New Delhi, November 24, 2106: India has the infamous distinction of being the Diabetes capital of the world and on the obesity front, India ranks third worldwide. Clearly, these two morbidities are plentiful in the Indian population. Several studies have aimed at evaluating this relationship. The Nurses’ Health Study compared women with stable weight (those who gained or lost <5 kg) after the age of 18 years to women who gained weight. Those who had gained 5.0 to 7.9 kg had a relative risk of diabetes of 1.9; this risk increased to 2.7 for women who gained 8.0 to 10.9 kg. Similar findings were noted in men in the Health Professionals Study. The excess risk for diabetes with even modest weight gain is substantial. Padma Shri awardee Dr. K.K Aggarwal, President HCFI and National President Elect IMA adds, “More than 80 percent of cases of type 2 diabetes can be attributed to obesity. It is seen that there is a curvilinear relationship between BMI and the risk of type 2 diabetes. The lowest risk is associated with a BMI below 22 kg/m2. At a BMI greater than 35 kg/m2, the relative risk for diabetes adjusted for age increases to 61. The risk may further increase by a sedentary lifestyle or decrease by exercise.” Weight gain after age 18 years in women and after age 20 years in men increases the risk of type 2 diabetes. It is a matter of extreme concern as weight gain precedes the onset of diabetes. Among Pima Indians (a group with a particularly high incidence of type 2 diabetes), body weight gradually increased 30 kg (from 60 kg to 90 kg) in the years preceding the diagnosis of diabetes. Conversely, weight loss is associated with a decreased risk of type 2 diabetes. “Insulin resistance with high insulin levels is characteristic of obesity and is present before the onset of high blood sugar levels. Obesity leads to impairment in glucose removal and increased insulin resistance, which result in hyperinsulinemia. Hyperinsulinemia contributes to high lipid levels and high blood pressure”, added Dr. K.K Aggarwal further. It is important that those with preexisting Diabetes or those with a family history of type 2 Diabetes mellitus maintain a healthy body mass index. This will not only help in improving the course, severity and extent of the existing disease but also help in preventing the development of serious complications in high risk individuals.