Families in Sheffield are being urged to follow their Olympic heroes and get active to reduce their risk of developing diabetes.
NHS Sheffield recently revealed that some 28,500 adults and children in the city have either type 1 diabetes or the more common but preventable type 2 diabetes, while thousands more cases remain undiagnosed.
Type 2 diabetes, which accounts for roughly 90 per cent of all diabetes cases, is linked to factors such as lack of exercise, unhealthy diet and obesity. If the condition is not controlled properly, it can lead to serious health problems, with the latest figures showing that 547 people in Sheffield died of type 2 diabetes complications between 2007 and 2008.
To help raise awareness of the disease and promote diabetes prevention, NHS Sheffield is now targeting young people who have been motivated by their favourite athletes at the London Olympics to take up a new sport and adopt a healthier lifestyle .
A spokeswoman for the Trust said type 2 diabetes is most common in adults over 40, particularly in those of South Asia, African-Caribbean or Middle Eastern descent, but warned that an increasing amount of children and young adults are also being diagnosed.
“Childhood obesity is a priority for us in Sheffield as the health risks to children and young people who are overweight are significant, putting them at a higher risk of diabetes, heart disease and stroke later in life,” Lis Reid, a public health worker at NHS Sheffield, said.
“Symptoms common to both types of diabetes include feeling thirsty, the need to pass urine frequently, weight loss and extreme tiredness. So if you are concerned you have these symptoms visit your GP. If your symptoms develop quickly or your child has symptoms, seek urgent medical advice.”

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