Are You At Risk Of Developing Type 2 Diabetes?

There is nothing that you can do to prevent Type 1 diabetes; however, Type 2 diabetes is a little more complex, itís a combination of your genes and your lifestyle'.

You can find out your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes by taking our online Diabetes Risk Score Test at:

You are more at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes if:
You are over 40 (or over 25 if you are South Asian)
You have a close family member with diabetes (parent, brother or sister)
You are overweight, with a large waist size (over 80cm (31.5 inches) for women, 94cm (37 inches) for men, or 89cm (35 inches) for South Asian men)
Being South Asian, Black African, African Caribbean, even if you were born in the UK
You have ever had high blood pressure, a heart attack or a stroke
You're a woman with polycystic ovary syndrome and overweight
If you're a woman and you've had gestational diabetes or given birth to a baby over 10 pounds
If you have a severe mental illness for which you take medication (such as schizophrenia, bipolar illness or depression)
You've been told you have impaired glucose tolerance or impaired fasting glycaemia.

Note: Some of these risks factors are genetic factors and there is little you can do to reduce them, so itís best to concentrate on those you can change, such as your weight.

These things do not cause diabetes:

Virus or Germs Ė You cannot catch diabetes like a cold.

Stress Ė Though it may make the symptoms worse in people who already have the condition.

An accident or an Illness Ė These will not cause diabetes, but may reveal the condition if it is already there.

Diabetic Myths:

Skinny people do not get type 2 diabetes - It is true that being overweight is a risk factor for developing type 2 diabetes, when overweight people with type 2 diabetes lose weight, it helps control blood sugars by helping the body use insulin better, but it is also true that skinny people can develop diabetes! Around 15% of the people with type 2 diabetes are normal weight or thin; weight is not the only factor involved in developing diabetes.

If you have type 2 diabetes and start taking insulin, you now have type 1 diabetes - It is true that people with type 1 diabetes must take insulin as their bodies do not make insulin, but Type 2 diabetes is different; a person with type 2 diabetes makes insulin but cannot use it properly due to a condition called insulin resistance; other diabetes medications may not be enough to control blood sugars in people who are type 2, in which case more insulin is needed for proper glucose metabolism.

People with diabetes canít eat dessert - Desserts almost always contain carbohydrates, and a person with diabetes needs to know how many carbohydrates they can eat at meals and snacks; however, Desserts can be included as part of the carbohydrate allowance.

Disclaimer: The information presented on this site is for general use only and is not intended to provide personal medical advice or substitute for the advice of your physician. If you have questions or concerns about individual health matters or the management of your diabetes, please consult your diabetes care team. Products highlighted on this website are not necessarily endorsed by Diabetes UK.