EXMOUTH set for diabetes time bomb

EXMOUTH is set for a diabetes time bomb after the number of people diagnosed shot up by around 80 in the past year health charity Diabetes UK have said.

EXMOUTH is set for a diabetes time bomb after the number of people diagnosed shot up by around 80 in the past year health charity Diabetes UK have said.

The data, collected from GP practices show the numbers of people registered in the last year with the chronic condition increased by more than 11,000 to 224,413 in the region.

This equates to over 300 people in East Devon – and earlier this year it was also revealed that up to 700 Exmouth residents could be walking around unaware that they have the condition, more than anywhere else in the country.

In the UK, around 90 per cent of people with diabetes (2.5 million) have Type 2 diabetes, which is strongly linked to being overweight or obese, leading a sedentary lifestyle and eating an unhealthy diet.


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In many cases the condition can be prevented by maintaining a healthy weight, taking regular physical activity and eating a balanced diet rich in fruit and vegetables but low in fat, sugar and salt.

Graham Cooper, Regional Manager for Diabetes UK South West, said: “Once again we see a shocking rise in diabetes and obesity rates across the South West. Many, but not all, people develop Type 2 diabetes because they are overweight or obese so we must keep up the mantra of ‘five fruit and veg a day’, encourage daily physical activity, and warn of the potentially devastating consequences of an unhealthy lifestyle.

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“The obesity-fuelled Type 2 diabetes epidemic is a clear example of where the new coalition government’s rhetoric of tackling health problems through prevention must be turned into action. Failure to act now means a bleak future of spiralling NHS costs and worsening public health. Diabetes is serious: if not diagnosed early or poorly managed, it can result in blindness and amputation or a shortened life expectancy from heart disease, stroke and kidney failure.”

Diabetes UK is encouraging people to go online and take its new Diabetes Risk Score test (www.diabetes.org.uk/riskscore) to find out about their risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.

Around 10 per cent of NHS spending goes on diabetes and its complications; this equates to �9 billion per year or �1 million an hour.

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