Almost one in ten people in the UK will have diabetes by 2030, with obesity fueling a surge in cases, a charity warns.
About 5.5 million people are likely to live with diabetes within the next decade, putting them at risk of “devastating complications” such as heart attacks, kidney failure, stroke, amputation and blindness, Diabetes UK said.
Chris Askew, the charity’s executive director, said the country is “at the tipping point of a public health emergency” and that action is needed “to stop it”.
If nothing is done to stem the rise in cases, Diabetes UK estimates that there could be more than 87,000 hospital admissions per year in England by 2030.
This would be an increase of 14% compared to 2020/21 and more than 50% more than the value in 2006/07.
The data is based on the diabetes prevalence predictive models of Public Health England and the Association of Public Health Observatories.
Additional analysis by Diabetes UK also suggests that one in three British adults – more than 17 million people – could be at increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 2030.
The charity is calling for action on several fronts, including adding more people to the NHS diabetes prevention program.
The program aims to help people achieve a healthy weight, learn better nutrition, and make regular exercise a part of their lives.
Diabetes UK also wants people diagnosed with type 2 diabetes to go into remission whenever possible through actions such as tailored weight loss advice or gastric band surgery.
In addition, the company aims to expand access to weight loss programs and ensure that people with all types of diabetes get their regular NHS checkups to reduce the risk of complications.
Currently, nearly 4.1 million people in the UK are diagnosed with either type 1 diabetes (which accounts for less than 1 in 10 cases) or type 2 diabetes, which is strongly related to obesity and also by age, ethnicity and origin . Family history can be influenced.
Another 850,000 people are believed to be living with type 2 diabetes but are unaware of it.
Mr. Askew said, “Any diagnosis of diabetes is life changing.
“The intransigence of the disease and the pervasive fear of serious and life-changing complications are a lifelong reality for millions of families across the UK.
“It’s a sobering thought that if we don’t act today, hundreds of thousands will be faced with the life-changing news that they have type 2 diabetes.
“We are at the tipping point of a public health emergency and we must act today to stop it.
“It doesn’t have to be this way – we know that with the right care and support, complications of diabetes can be avoided and cases of type 2 diabetes in remission or completely prevented.
“We don’t want our prediction to come true. What we need to see is the will, courage and determination of the government to put a stop to this crisis and improve the future health of our nation for generations to come. “
Diabetes UK has launched a new TV campaign, This Is Diabetes, featuring families across the UK living with the disease.
Professor Jonathan Valabhji, National Clinical Director for Diabetes and Obesity at NHS England, said: “Diabetes can have a profound impact on people’s lives, with a higher risk of heart attacks, strokes, limb loss, many of the most common cancers and more serious consequences with Covid-19 , but thanks to better NHS treatment and care, the outlook for people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes has improved significantly over the past few decades.
“As part of its long-term plan, the NHS is already running the world’s largest type 2 diabetes prevention program to help people reduce their risk of developing the disease, and is testing low-calorie diets in those who recently a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes in order to achieve remission. “
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