There are two main types of diabetes: Type 1 and Type 2
- Type 1 diabetes can't be prevented. The body's immune system destroys the insulin-producing cells, and nobody quite understands why.
- Type 2 diabetes is a little more complex. Whilst carrying extra weight, particularly around the middle (waist) is a significant risk factor for Type 2 diabetes, other factors such as genetics, age and ethnicity also play a big part. This means some people who are carrying extra weight won't develop diabetes, while others who are of a healthy weight, might. It's the combination of our genes and our lifestyle that influences the development of Type 2 diabetes.
If Type 2 diabetes can't be prevented, how can you reduce your risk of getting it?
Firstly you need to know your chances of developing Type 2 diabetes. You can find out your risk using our simple, online Diabetes Risk Score Test.
Some risk factors such as age, gender and ethnicity can't be changed – but lifestyle can. We know that up to 80 per cent of cases of Type 2 diabetes can be prevented, and risk can be reduced by up to 60 per cent after making some basic lifestyle changes. If you are overweight, every kilogram you lose could reduce your risk by up to 15 per cent.
How do you know if you need to lose weight?
- Measure your waist circumference
- Calculate your Body Mass index (BMI)
- Compare your results to the healthy targets