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Diabetes UK comment on World Health Day focus on diabetes 7 April 2016

Diabetes UK has responded to a World Health Organisation (WHO) Report on diabetes with Libby Dowling, Senior Clinical Advisor at Diabetes UK, saying, “A staggering four million people are currently living with diabetes in the UK, of which an estimated 549,000 people have Type 2 diabetes but do not know it as they have not yet been diagnosed. It is estimated that, if nothing changes, five million people in the UK will be living with the condition by 2025, making the need to tackle this serious health condition more urgent than ever.

“While this study attributes the increase in diabetes prevalence in Western Europe in part to an ageing population, it is crucial that we recognise the most important risk factor for Type 2 diabetes which is being overweight or obese – almost two in every three people in the UK are overweight or obese and therefore at increased risk of Type 2 diabetes.

“Unlike Type 1 diabetes which cannot be prevented and is not linked to lifestyle, we therefore have huge scope to turn around the outlook for Type 2, the most common form of diabetes, through helping people to maintain a healthy weight by eating a healthy diet and being active so they can delay or even prevent onset of the condition. This is crucial as left untreated or poorly managed Type 2 diabetes can lead to devastating but avoidable health complications.

“Understanding their risk of Type 2 diabetes, which is also linked to risk factors such as age, gender and ethnicity, is the first critical step to people being able to make any necessary lifestyle changes to reduce their risk of this serious health condition. This is why this World Health Day we are encouraging people to go online to check their risk of Type 2 diabetes.

The WHO has dedicated its annual World Health Day in 2016 to diabetes.

You can do this at http://www.diabetes.org.uk/risk

The WHO data visualisations on diabetes are available here: www.ncdrisc.org

The full Article is available online at: http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(16)00618-8/abstract

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