Why do People get Diabetes, and how do you Prevent it?

Diabetes is a severe condition that is affecting 4.5 million people currently in the UK. It is quite sad to see people overlook this disease, but though it isn’t your problem, you must care and respect those who have diabetes. It not only makes you a better citizen, but it can help you to know about it so you can prevent your loved ones from being affected by it.

The Department of Health defines diabetes as “a chronic and progressive disease that impacts almost every aspect of life”. On the other hand, Public Health of England defines Diabetes as a” non-communicable disease where the amount of glucose in the blood is too high”. Diabetes is a leading health issue in the UK, so how can government interventions help individuals to change their lifestyle?

There are two types of Diabetes: type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is caused by an absolute insulin deficiency, the result of a loss of the insulin-producing beta cells of the pancreas. In contrast, type 2 diabetes is caused by a relative insulin deficiency which initially is compensated for with an increase in insulin secretion.

The Scottish Diabetes Survey 2017 reported 298,504 people diagnosed with Diabetes in Scotland at the end of 2017. In the survey, 88.2% (263,271) were recorded as having type 2 diabetes and 10.5% (31,447) type 1 diabetes.

In England NHS there are 2.7 million people diagnosed with diabetes, a number that is increasing by about 5% per year. About 10% of people with diagnosed Diabetes currently have Type 1 diabetes.

Wales NHS has the highest prevalence of Diabetes in the UK. More than 198,883 people in Wales are living with Diabetes. Diabetes costs the NHS in Wales approximately £500m a year.

Locally Ealing Council has confirmed that Ealing has the fifth highest prevalence of Diabetes in London, with more than 26,300 adults being diagnosed with this disease.

The NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme was launched in 2016 to support people who are at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes. They aim to help people to become more physically active and improve their diet. If a person is overweight or obese, the programme should result in weight loss.

To prevent diabetes, NHS Health Trainers in Ealing provide patients with advice on how to live a healthier lifestyle. Ealing provides health checks, walk programmes and more to help patients with Diabetes. Diabetes UK is a campaign running, and they aim to “win a better future for everyone living with diabetes”.

In conclusion, diabetes has an immense impact on an individual’s health. National and local levels need to work together to educate public people on the effect of diabetes so that we can all live healthier lifestyles.


Milad Rouf Final Year Medical Student, Cardiff University.

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