One in 15 people in the UK are thought to be living with diabetes but there’s one town in the UK where more than one in 10 people have been diagnosed with the condition.
Bradford has the UK’s highest prevalence of diabetes, with 10.4 per cent of the population in the West Yorkshire city suffering.
According to new analysis released by Diabetes UK, alongside Bradford, Harrow, Sandwell and West Birmingham show the highest diabetes diagnoses at 10.43%, 9.40% and 9.14% of the population respectively, while Richmond upon Thames reports the lowest number of cases with only 3.63%. Camden and central London recorded just over 4% each.
Dr Waqas Tahir, GP and clinical lead for diabetes at Bradford Care Alliance, told The Telegraph and Argus: “Diabetes is one of the biggest health challenges people face in Bradford. 500 people are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes across the UK every day; that’s the equivalent of one person every three minutes.
“Type 2 diabetes is usually caused by lifestyle factors and is preventable in most people. Obesity and lack of physical activity are two of the most common causes of this form of diabetes.
“Obesity accounts for 80 to 85 per cent of the overall risk of developing Type 2 diabetes and underlies the current global spread of this condition.”
According to Dr Tahir there are a few steps people can take to reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes including reducing our alcohol intake, stopping smoking, taking regular exercise and eating a healthy, balanced diet.
Overall the new figures reveal that the number of people who have been diagnosed with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes has more than doubled over the past 20 years, with 3.7 million people aged 17 or older now known to be living with the disease.
The number of reported cases has shot up by an estimated 10,533 since last year – from 283,922 to 294,455.
Scarily, however, Diabetes UK says that the number of people with diabetes is likely to be even higher than the latest data suggests, with estimates indicating almost a million people in the UK have undiagnosed type 2 diabetes.
Further analysis by the team based on figures relating to obesity and waist circumference also reveals that there are about 12.3 million people in the UK at risk of type 2 diabetes but who do not yet have the condition.
Speaking about the findings, Chris Askew, Diabetes UK chief executive, said: “Diabetes is the fastest growing health crisis of our time; and the fact that diagnoses have doubled in just 20 years should give all of us serious pause for thought.
“Both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes are serious conditions that can lead to devastating complications such as amputation, blindness, kidney disease, stroke and heart disease if people don’t receive a timely diagnosis and begin receiving the right care.”
According to the NHS Diabetes is a lifelong condition that causes a person’s blood sugar level to become too high.
The site goes on to explain that there are two main types of diabetes:
- type 1 diabetes– where the body’s immune system attacks and destroys the cells that produce insulin
- type 2 diabetes– where the body doesn’t produce enough insulin, or the body’s cells don’t react to insulin
Type 2 diabetes is far more common than type 1. In the UK, around 90% of all adults with diabetes have type 2.
During pregnancy, some women have such high levels of blood glucose that their body is unable to produce enough insulin to absorb it all. This is known as gestational diabetes.
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