Subscribe for daily wellness inspiration

Like onlymyhealth on Facebook!

How to prevent Type 2 diabetes

By  ,  National Institute of Health
Nov 23, 2011
Quick Bites

  • Overweight people with prediabetes can prevent diabetes by losing 5 to 7% of their body weight.
  • The modest weight loss from diet and increased physical activity lowered diabetes onset by 60 percent.
  • Treatment with metformin  lowered the risk of developing diabetes by 31 percent in the study.

Bob Huber doesn’t dwell on the time, about 10 years ago, when he found out he was likely to get type 2 diabetes. At 5’ 11”, he weighed 216 pounds, rarely exercised and had little energy. In a sitting position, I had a hard time taking a deep breath,” he recalls.


Image source : getty

Then, at a health fair in Washington, DC, he happened by a booth where he had a screening test for blood glucose. It came back high. More testing confirmed he had a condition called prediabetes.

Prediabetes causes no symptoms, but it is still a serious condition.

Many people with prediabetes develop type 2 diabetes within the next 10 years. People with prediabetes also have a 50% higher risk of having a heart attack and stroke than those who have normal blood glucose levels.

Huber, along with more than 3,000 other adults with prediabetes, decided to volunteer for the Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP), an NIH-funded study taking place at 27 clinical centers around the country.

The study found that overweight people with prediabetes can often prevent or delay diabetes by losing 5 to 7% of their body weight. They can do this through cutting fat and calories and increasing physical activity, such as walking 30 minutes a day 5 days a week. The modest weight loss from diet and increased physical activity lowered diabetes onset by nearly 60 percent in study participants. Treatment with metformin, an oral diabetes medication, lowered the risk of developing diabetes by 31 percent in the study.

Also read : Ways to Balance Your Blood Sugar Naturally

Lifestyle changes worked just as well for men and women and all ethnic groups. Nearly half the DPP participants were from minority groups who suffer disproportionately from type 2 diabetes: African Americans, Hispanic Americans, American Indians, and Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. In the study, people age 60 and older who made the lifestyle changes lowered their chances of developing diabetes by 71 percent.

When these results were announced, they surpassed even researchers’ expectations. Study chair Dr. David Nathan of Massachusetts General Hospital said, “They came as close to qualifying for ‘the gold’ as any diabetes finding of the last decade.”

Diabetes is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. Statistics just released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that 20.8 million people—7% of the population—have diabetes, and over 6 million of them don’t even know they have it. Another 41 million people have prediabetes.

Bob Huber was 65 years old when he learned he had prediabetes. He’s 75 now and feels better than ever. After losing 20 pounds and keeping it off, he credits his energy to the healthy habits he learned as a DPP participant. But you don’t have to be a study participant to adopt these healthy habits. As Huber’s story shows, the power to control this condition is in your hands.


Also read : Herbs that help you control your Diabetes

Small steps to diabetes prevention:

Recent studies have proven that people at high risk for type 2 diabetes can often prevent or delay the onset of diabetes with 30 minutes of physical activity 5 days a week and by losing 5 to 7% of their body weight. In other words, you don’t have to knock yourself out to prevent diabetes. The key is: small steps lead to big rewards. Here are some tips that might help.


EASY STEPS to increase activity:  

  • Put away the TV remote control and get up to change the channel.
  • Try walking around the house while you talk on the phone.
  • Park the car farther away from stores, movie theaters or your office.
  • Get off the bus one stop early, if you are in a safe place to walk.
  • Visit museums, the zoo or an aquarium. These are great ways to be active with your family. 


EAT RIGHT. Try some of these tips to get started:

  • You don’t have to cut out the foods you love to eat. Just cut down on the amount you eat, and eat them less often.
  • Try to keep meat, poultry and fish servings down to three ounces - that’s about the size of a deck of cards.
  • Try to eat three sensible meals at regular times throughout the day.
  • Eat more fresh fruit, veggies, nuts and whole grains.
  • Limit fried foods. Baking and broiling are healthier ways to eat meat, chicken and fish.
  • When eating out, share large portions.


Top Image source : getty

Read more articles on Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus Prevention

For more such stories, Download Onlymyhealth app

Write a Review
Is it Helpful Article?YES11143 Views 0 Comment
Post a Comment

Though all possible measures have been taken to ensure accuracy, reliability, timeliness and authenticity of the information; Onlymyhealth assumes no liability for the same. Using any information of this website is at the viewers’ risk. Please be informed that we are not responsible for advice/tips given by any third party in form of comments on article pages . If you have or suspect having any medical condition, kindly contact your professional health care provider.

  • All
  • Article
  • Slideshow
  • Video
  • QnA