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Diabetes waistline link 'unknown'

09 May 2013 09:32

Nearly 4 million people in the UK suffer from diabetes

Nearly 4 million people in the UK suffer from diabetes

A large waistline is an indicator that someone may be in danger of developing diabetes but almost two-thirds of people do not realise it. A survey by Diabetes UK and Bupa found that 63% of people had no idea that having a large waist - 31.5 inches or more for women and 35 inches or more for men - would place them in the high-risk category of developing type 2 diabetes.

Most people are aware that being overweight or leading a sedentary lifestyle can put them at risk of developing the condition but far fewer realise that having a normal body mass index with a large waist also makes them susceptible. There are 3.8 million people with diabetes in the UK. Around 850,000 of these have type 2 diabetes but do not know it. This could lead to them experiencing problems and making uninformed decisions that could affect their health. For instance, potential sufferers may not be aware they need travel insurance with medical conditions.

Barbara Young, chief executive of Diabetes UK, said: "The fact that awareness of some risk factors for type 2 diabetes is so low is worrying; it is only if people know they are at high risk that they are likely to be motivated to make the lifestyle changes that can help prevent it."