Those in the medical profession witness the nation’s health problems first-hand. So when a GP says that diabetes is more widespread than it used to be, we should sit up and listen.

Dr Joan St John, who practises in Brent, North-West London, told BBC News: “Not a week goes by that you don’t make a new diagnosis of diabetes, at least one if not two or three; previously that might have been once a month.”

Sound surprising? Her words are backed by NHS figures. Today, 3.3million people are living with diabetes. In 2005, the total was 2.1 million – a jump of over 60% in a decade.

The figures take into account every form of the disease. Those with Type 1 diabetes and some of the less-common forms, such as MODY and Wolfram Syndrome, are born with a genetic predisposition to it.

However, around 90% of those with the disease have Type 2 diabetes, which is linked to unhealthy lifestyles.

So what can you do to help? If you work in the healthcare or medical profession, you already are:

  • Dietitians advise patients on better eating habits;
  • Nurses steer them towards healthier lifestyles;
  • GPs prescribe exercise;
  • Physiotherapists develop workout programs.

If it were not for the hard work of our medical and healthcare sector, that figure of 3.3million would be much, much higher.

What do you blame for the leap in diabetes cases? And what advice do you have for tackling the problem? Give us your insight at

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