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Christmas could have increased diabetes risk for millions, say experts

Monday, 28 December 2009 - 2:19pm IST | Place: London | Agency: ANI
Charity Diabetes UK said that high-calorie foods enjoyed by most people over Christmas could boost their weight over a very short time.

Christmas could have increased the risk of diabetes for millions of people, experts have warned.


Charity Diabetes UK said that eating and drinking too much over the festive period could have increased many people's risk of developing prediabetes - an under-diagnosed and symptomless condition that puts you up to 15 times more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes.


The charity said that high-calorie foods enjoyed by most people over Christmas could boost their weight over a very short time.


With mince pies containing about 200 calories each, Christmas cake with 250 calories per slice and mulled wine at 250 calories a glass, the recommended calorie intake of 2,000 a day for women and 2,500 for men can be quickly exceeded.


The charity said that if people were already overweight, had high blood pressure or a family history of Type 2 diabetes, they were at serious risk of prediabetes.


Those with prediabetes have blood sugar levels higher than normal, but not high enough to be diagnosed as Type 2 diabetes.


However, Diabetes UK said that prediabetes could often be reversed through losing even just a moderate amount of weight, adopting a healthy, balanced diet and increasing physical activity levels.


"Prediabetes is often a precursor to Type 2 diabetes which can lead to a shortened life expectancy and devastating complications such as heart disease, stroke, blindness, kidney failure and amputation," the Scotsman quoted Diabetes UK chief executive Douglas Smallwood as saying.


"Make it your New Year's resolution to eat more healthily and take regular physical activity," Smallwood added.


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