How can I reduce my risk of diabetes?
1 in every 16 people in the UK has been diagnosed with diabetes – 90% of which have type 2 diabetes, which is predominantly associated with weight gain, poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle. 80% of type 2 diabetic cases are preventable – so what can you do to ensure that you don’t contribute to these statistics?
There are a number of known risk factors that will contribute to your likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes, these include:
- Being overweight or obese
- Having a large waist (more than 31.5” for women, and 37” for men)
- Not being White European
- Having a sibling or parent with diabetes
- Having a personal history of stroke, heart attack or high blood pressure
- Having suffered with mental health problems, including depression or stress
- Being over 49 years old
Eating well is important regardless of your health status. However, if you are at high risk of developing diabetes, have been diagnosed with diabetes or are pre-diabetic, then the evidence of your fluctuating daily blood sugar levels and onset of unpleasant diabetic complications will be harder to ignore and ultimately speed up the disease onset and progression. Eating a balanced and healthy diet will also help to manage your weight – it is worth remembering that every kilogram lost in excess weight is associated with a 16% reduction in diabetes risk.
Easy, Healthy Changes
- Replace potatoes with root vegetables, such as turnip, beetroot and swede. These colourful vegetables make a delicious traybake, be sure to add herbs and spices for the finishing touch.
- Stop filling up on sandwiches and baguettes at lunchtime. Instead, opt for a healthy and hearty soup that is stuffed full with lentils, chickpeas or beans. A bucket load of flavour, and if you find that you’re still hungry, simply add in a whole meal tortilla wrap or pitta bread for dipping.
- Stews can be a delicious way to bring the whole family together – just make sure to use lean cuts of meat and bulk it out with plenty of vegetables. A meal like this can all be bunged into a slow cooker at sunrise and can be left bubbling away throughout the day, in time for you to come home and enjoy without lifting a finger!
- Curry is a great choice of dish, and can be conjured up when you’re short on time, or having a lazy Sunday afternoon. Instead of coconut milk or cream, replace with low-fat coconut milk or low-fat natural/Greek yoghurt. Always add more vegetables than you think you’ll need, and opt for a low-fat protein choice such as tofu, chicken or fish. Also choose brown rice instead of white.
- When making a chilli or bolognaise, opt for a lean beef mince, or better yet, turkey or chicken mince. Increase the vegetable intake and bulk out with plenty of beans to increase the fibre content. Serve with brown rice or brown pasta instead of white. Add plenty of herbs and spices to these meals to give them a warming and satisfying taste.
For full details of our Employee Nutrition Services, please find our brochure here and to chat through how this may be implemented in your workplace please call Anna on 07778 218009.