How to reduce your risk of diabetes

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Type 2 diabetes is a common health problem which causes the level of sugar in the blood to get too high. Common symptoms include feeling thirsty all the time, peeing a lot and feeling tired more often than normal. 

However, there are simple ways to reduce your risk of developing the condition.

Some people are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes due to their genetics, but the good news is that around half of all cases could be prevented with lifestyle changes*. 

Read on to find out how you can reduce your risk of diabetes:

Get more active 

Physical exercise has been found to reduce the risk of diabetes.

The UK Chief Medical Officers recommend that adults do at least 150 minutes (2.5 hours) of moderate exercise a week, such as brisk walking or riding a bike.  

If you are exercising more vigorously — for example running, skipping or playing football — then a minimum of 75 minutes (1.25 hours) is recommended. 

The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) advises moving more throughout the day, limiting the amount of time spent sitting around and travelling on foot or bicycle when possible. 

The best way to do more exercise is to find an activity you enjoy, so it may be worth trying different things to see what works for you. 

Lose some weight 

Being overweight — particularly around the waist — is a major risk factor for type 2 diabetes. Losing weight can definitely reduce your risk of diabetes.

NICE recommends taking part in a weight loss programme (like ours) which addresses the reasons you might find it difficult to lose weight. 

Support tailored to your individual needs and challenges will help you to make lasting changes to your eating habits. 

Eat more healthily 

While it is not true that eating too much sugar can cause diabetes, limiting foods which are high in sugar can definitely play a part in preventing the condition. 

The advice in the NHS Eatwell Guide is a great starting point for building a balanced diet.  

It recommends building meals around starchy carbohydrates, getting five portions of fruit and vegetables a day and eating foods which are high in fibre. 

It also advises limiting fat, fried foods and calories from alcohol. 

The other good news is that our free service can help support you with all of the above, so sign up now

*Diabetes UK 

Source: National Institute for Clinical Excellence

24 May, 2024