People in Greater Manchester are being urged to take action this week for Diabetes Prevention week (1-7 April).

GPs across the region are inviting people known to be at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes to attend a free personalised programme to help reduce their risk.

So far in Greater Manchester over 20,000 have taken up this invitation to join ‘Healthier You’, the NHS National Diabetes Prevention Programme, which helps people make positive changes to diet, weight and physical activity. On average people have lost 3 kgs within 6 months of starting the programme.

Dr Naresh Kanumilli, Manchester GP and diabetes clinical lead for the Greater Manchester and Eastern Cheshire Strategic Clinical Networks, encourages people to sign-up to the programme: “The course is free and many people enjoy going along and feel much better afterwards. It shows you how eating a little bit better and exercising more can make it less likely you will develop diabetes.”

“If you develop diabetes, it can really affect your life. It’s a chronic medical condition which can lead to major health problems such as heart disease, blindness and even amputations in some cases.”

Nikki from Stockport was diagnosed by her GP as being at risk of diabetes and joined her local Healthier You programme. She said, “I’ve already recommended it to lots of people and two of my friends have actually started the course already because they were referred to it by their GPs so I can’t sing its praises enough – I feel that it’s really changed my life.”

Nikki’s advice to anyone who is at risk of diabetes is, “Do something about it, definitely don’t ignore it because ignoring it could lead to strokes or heart problems. Take part in the course even if you’re shy. If you’re a bit more reserved or quite private about your health matters, once you get there it’s totally fine and it’s great for all different kinds of people.

Nikki has also shared why she’s pleased that she took up her GPs offer to attend Healthier You in a 60 second video.

Jan, a Healthier You trainer, spoke about how people enjoy getting more active as part of the programme: “One of my groups decided by themselves following their “Make Every Day Active” session to volunteer on Sunday mornings to walk dogs across various Manchester Dogs Homes around Greater Manchester to help them to become more active. “

If you receive a letter in the post inviting you to take part in the programme, please phone the number provided and start reducing your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.

If your blood results show that you are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes, ask your GP or nurse for a referral today.

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