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I was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes this year

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Andrew Dunning, 47, is a creative director at an interior design company in north London. He was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes in January this year.

"My partner hadn't been feeling at all well so we went to the pharmacist and explained his symptoms. He ended up giving us a test so we could find out the level of blood glucose levels in our urine. My partner's reading was absolutely fine.

'I put being run down due to a busy Christmas'

"On the spur of the moment I decided to test mine as well. I'd been feeling run down but had just put it down to being busy at Christmas. When I took the test I discovered my blood glucose was out of control."

Andrew visited his GP, was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes and was immediately put on medication.

Crucially he was signed up for a structured education course to find out more about his condition (DESMOND) and also attended another one in Islington.

“These courses were incredibly helpful," says Andrew. "And what I’ve also found really useful is information I’ve found on the internet and talking to other people with the condition.”

Andrew now swims for half an hour each morning and watches what he eats.

“I wasn’t obese but I was definitely carrying too much weight round my middle. My diagnosis was a real wake-up call. I've chosen to follow a mainly low carb diet as that seems to keep my blood glucose levels under control and I've seen my HbA1c fall dramatically.

'This is my condition and I want to manage it'

“I am in the mind-set that this is my condition and I want to manage it. I had cancer of the knee when I was a teenager and ended up losing a leg when I was 19. I know that amputation can be one of the complications of diabetes and I am determined not to lose my other leg.”

After four months of taking medication Andrew was able to come off the pills due to his successful lifestyle changes which included losing weight and increasing his exercise. In this time his blood pressure and cholesterol was also reduced to levels he and his GP are happy with.

He’s also managed to reduce his weight from 82 kgs down to around 70 kgs - nearly two stone.

"I was on holiday in France recently and did indulge a bit with the pastries and by the end of the holiday I wasn't feeling as good as I had been. But I do know that it's OK to treat yourself once in a while! However, now I'm back home I'm back into my regular routine and feeling much better again. It's all about listening to your body."

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