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Cornish man takes big strides to improve his health

A man with type 2 diabetes from Lostwithiel, Cornwall has seen big improvements in his health after completing our One Million Step Challenge.

We called on people to cover at least 10,000 steps a day between 1 July and 30 September and raise sponsorship for every stride. Paul Sweet finished the challenge in two months rather than the allotted three.

The accountant and bookkeeper, 48, has had type 2 diabetes for over 20 years but never took it seriously until last year when his doctor told him he would have to take insulin. The father of two, who goes by the nickname “Arfer”, immediately gave up alcohol, began to eat more healthily and started walking.

He took on the One Million Step Challenge in 2016 and was delighted when his blood glucose levels started to fall, his waist shrank from a 44 to a 36 and he was able to come off his blood pressure tablets. As a result, Paul tackled Diabetes UK’s walking challenge again in 2017.

Paul Sweet said: “The thought of getting out there adding more steps each day and aiming for that one million target really spurred on a numbers nerd like me! I’ve also really come to appreciate where I live. There are some wonderful walks to be had in Cornwall. And best of all doing the One Million Step Challenge has helped turn me into a much healthier person. I’ve lost four and a half stone so far.

Paul continues to go out in all weathers, taking his dogs for an hour’s walk every morning, and walking to and from the railway station when he goes to work. And, happily, he no longer needs to go on to insulin.

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