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New figures highlight obesity crisis

More than 12 million adults and one million children in England will be obese by 2010, according to figures published today by the Department of Health.The 'Forecasting Obesity to 2010' report says that around a third of adults and a fifth of all children will be obese, with girls overtaking boys.Being overweight and leading an inactive lifestyle increase the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes."Not all people with diabetes are overweight, but at diagnosis 80 per cent of those diagnosed with type 2 diabetes were overweight" said Douglas Smallwood, Chief Executive at Diabetes UK."If obesity rates continue to rise at such a rapid rate, the number of deaths due to diabetes will increase in line with this. The World Health Organisation has already predicted a 25 per cent increase in deaths caused by diabetes over the next decade. This is not to mention the blindness, amputations and strokes which the condition can also lead to.""We're delighted to see the commitment voiced by the Government on tackling this huge problem. But we want to see these words turned into actions."Commenting on the report, Secretary of State for Health Patricia Hewitt said: "We've already stepped in to try and slow this worrying trend, but there's only so much the Government can do. People need to want to change their lifestyles and take responsibility for their health - before they face problems in later life such as coronary heart disease, Type 2 diabetes or cancer.”

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