Increasing numbers at threat from heart attack and strokes, NHS says
A record number of people are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes, increasing their chances of suffering a heart attack or stroke, the NHS has warned.
A “growing obesity crisis” has led to nearly two million people in England being exposed to the condition that causes the level of sugar in the blood to become too high.
As part of efforts to tackle the problem, a radical new liquid diet will be available on the NHS to put type 2 diabetes into remission.
Five thousand patients will be restricted to 800 calories per day for three months in a pilot to be rolled out from April.
This will be followed by a further nine months of support to help them maintain weight loss.
According to new NHS figures, there are 1,969,610 patients registered with a GP who have non-diabetic hyperglycaemia, a condition that puts people at risk of type 2 diabetes.
The health service warned the problem could become greater still due to the rise in obesity levels.
Projections indicate the growing number of diabetes sufferers could lead to 39,000 extra people suffering a heart attack in 2035 and more than 50,000 experiencing a stroke.
The most common form of diabetes, type 2 is caused by problems with how the insulin hormone breaks down glucose in the body.
The lifelong condition can cause excessive thirst, a need to frequently urinate and tiredness.
It can also increase the risk of serious problems with eyes, heart and nerves, and is often linked to being overweight or inactive.
The NHS’s world-first diabetes prevention programme is doubling its capacity to prevent people developing the condition.