MORE than 100 people were referred to their doctor after a health roadshow found them to be at risk of developing diabetes.
The Healthy Lifestyle Roadshow, run by Diabetes UK in association with Bupa, spent two days in Hartlepool last week to raise awareness of the risks associated with Type 2 diabetes.
Over the two days, 179 people spoke to experts and underwent a quick health check, and of those 108 were discovered to be at risk.
Of those told to make an appointment to see their doctor, some may already have the condition without ever being diagnosed.
Linda Wood, regional manager for Diabetes UK, said: “It’s obviously very concerning that so many people in Hartlepool have been identified as moderate or high risk of Type 2 diabetes, particularly as there are already 16,800 people diagnosed with the diabetes in Hartlepool and Stockton on Tees and we know an estimated 3,350 more have the condition but do not yet know it.
“But our roadshow has given them a chance to get help from their doctor and hopefully to take a serious look at their health.
“Being overweight is one of the main risk factors of Type 2 diabetes but it’s not the only one.
“Some people will be at risk of the condition because of their age, ethnicity or family history.
“But weight is the one thing you can do something about. So whether you have other risk factors or not, it is a smart move to look closely at your lifestyle habits and do all you can to keep at a healthy weight, eat well and be physically active.
“Even small changes can make a big difference.”
Type 2 diabetes is a lifelong condition but people who get diagnosed can go on to manage it well, through healthy eating, physical activity and in some cases medication.
If people are recognised as being at high or moderate risk, they may be able to prevent or delay the development of the condition through lifestyle choices and maintaining a healthy weight.
Dr Paula Franklin, medical director at Bupa UK, said: “We’re pleased that the Diabetes UK roadshow in Hartlepool has helped to educate so many about the risks factors associated with Type 2 diabetes.
“Prevention is key so we hope that anyone at risk has been inspired to make healthy lifestyle changes.”
To find out if you are at risk of Type 2 diabetes, carry out an online check at www.bupa.co.uk/diabetesriskscore.
Anyone found to be at moderate or high risk after the test is advised to visit their GP. For more information about diabetes, visit www.diabetes.org.uk.
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