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   Sep 24

Eat healthily and exercise regularly? You can still get Type 2 diabetes: One in 10 diagnosed with condition found to be perfectly normal weight

In England alone, 3.2million adults are thought to have type 2 diabetes

More than half of those newly diagnosed were obese. But 11.3% normal weight

National Diabetes Audit found 0.4 per cent of diabetics – are underweight

It is typically associated with eating too much and exercising too little – but one in ten people diagnosed with type 2 diabetes is a perfectly healthy weight.

Official figures show that the risk factors for the disease are far more complex than is often assumed.

The National Diabetes Audit found that a small number of sufferers – 0.4 per cent – are actually underweight.

Charity Diabetes UK, which analysed the data, said it highlights that weight is not the only risk factor. Older people are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes, as are those with a family history of the disease. Those from a black, South Asian or Chinese background are also at higher risk.

And scientists are concerned that some people who look thin might have internal fat wrapped around their organs. Although largely hidden, this fat produces hormones and other substances that affect cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar levels, raising the risk of a host of health problems including diabetes.

Research in July by London Metropolitan University found that 15 per cent of healthy weight children had high internal fat.

Find out if you’re at risk of diabetes with the Four Ts test

In Type 2 diabetes, which makes up 90 per cent of cases, the body becomes resistant to insulin, the hormone that breaks down sugar in the blood.

Sufferers must eat a special diet and monitor their blood sugar. The other 10 per cent of cases are type 1 – a condition that prevents insulin being made, and is not tied to weight.

In England alone, 3.2million adults are thought to have type 2 diabetes, including 850,000 who have not yet been diagnosed. NHS officials estimate that will soar to 4.6million by 2030.

A programmable insulin pump administers insulin continuously through catheter into the subcutaneous fat

Diabetes UK studied data on more than 200,000 patients from the National Diabetes Audit and found that almost nine out of ten type 2 sufferers had a body mass index of more than 25 – classed as being overweight. More than half of those who had been newly diagnosed were obese. But 11.3 per cent were of normal weight.

Barbara Young, of Diabetes UK, said: ‘Crucially, we need to make sure that people identified as being high risk are then given the support they need to make the lifestyle changes that can help prevent it.’

She said obesity was still the main driver, adding: ‘Diabetes has become a national health emergency. These new findings show we will only ever begin to turn back the rising tide of type 2 diabetes if we finally get to grips with the obesity epidemic.’

She added that losing just a few pounds can reduce your risk of developing the serious illness, which can cause early death, and called for new policies and laws ‘that make it easier for people to make healthy choices’.

Source: Daily Mail

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