During Diabetes Week which is taking place from Sunday 11 June to Saturday 17 June, Diabetes UK is raising awareness of the soaring numbers of people diagnosed with the condition and making sure that people with diabetes get the right care and support to lead long and healthy lives

Diabetes is the fastest growing health threat today and around 11.9 million adults in the UK are at increased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes without knowing it.

The good news is that there are steps that everyone can take towards healthier living that can also help lower the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.

 

Know Your Risk

 

Three out of five cases of Type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed if people take action, to maintain a healthy weight, eat well and be active.

So how do we know we’re at risk?

Being overweight is a major warning sign, particularly a large waistline. It’s a factor which affects a lot of people: two out of every three adults in the UK are obese or overweight.

Yet there are other important risk factors, including being over 40, of African-Caribbean, Black African, Chinese or South Asian origin, plus if it runs in your family.

Find out your odds. It takes less than three minutes to use Diabetes UK’s popular online questionnaire, Know Your Risk. You just need to take three measurements (your height, weight and waist), then answer a few simple questions. If the results show you are at risk, you’ll be advised to visit your GP surgery for further tests and advice.

 

Think healthy

 

A healthy diet and lifestyle is important for everyone, including people with Type 1 and with Type 2 diabetes. An added benefit of healthy eating is that it can also help reduce your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.

So a healthy balanced diet means eating more fruit and vegetables, some wholegrain carbohydrates, lean protein, and low-fat, low-sugar dairy foods. And reducing the amount of saturated fat, sugar and salt.

Healthy food swaps can help – at breakfast try switching white toast for wholegrain versions like seeded batch bread, multi-seed, granary, soya and linseed.  For lunch or your evening meal choose a low fat protein like skinless chicken, turkey or fish or even try beans or pulses for a low fat, high fibre option.

Enjoying what you eat is one of life’s pleasures. But sometimes we all need a little bit of help with healthy eating. Diabetes UK’s Food you love campaign does just that by featuring real people living with diabetes cooking the food we all love but healthier. You can sign up for your free recipe videos and more at www.diabetes.org.uk/love-food

 

Move more

 

The second part of the healthy lifestyle equation is exercise. Being physically active and moving more each day not only helps to improve your general fitness and lower stress levels, but can actually help reduce your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.