A project to improve access to dietitians in East Sussex has led to significant improvements in health for patients.
The project ran for 20 months and saw 648 people in East Sussex referred to a dietitian. Patients that received referrals either had type 2 diabetes or were at high risk of developing the condition.
Access to a dietitian was offered across GP surgeries in Lewes, Newick, Newhaven and Peacehaven. Patients who visited the dietitian benefited from education and motivation towards making changes to their diet and lifestyle. Appointments were either one-to-one sessions or group sessions for weight management.
The results of the project showed that 95% of patients that took part in the project, and returned for a follow-up appointment, lost weight. Average weight loss of the patients was 3kg per person.
Following having taken part in the project, patients showed improvements in blood glucose, blood pressure and cholesterol levels for up to a year after discharge from the service.
Specialist Diabetes Dietitian at East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust, Emma Smith commented: “These results really highlight the positive impact that lifestyle changes have and specifically the role the dietitian plays in promoting self care and improved health and well-being outcomes in patients with diabetes and those at significant risk.”
For people with type 2 diabetes that are not on insulin or prescribed test strips and want to learn how diet can affect blood glucose levels, Europe’s largest diabetes community website, www.Diabetes.co.uk has launched a new educational programme that provides test strips, along with guidance on how to get the most out of blood glucose testing, to improve diabetes control.
To join the programme and find out more visit www.type2testing.com

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