“There is no need to count calories or become obsessed with your diet. All you have to do is follow a few basic guidelines for healthy eating and make different food choices.”
John, 70, is a retired accountant who leads a busy life and is a carer for his wife.
John was particularly concerned when his doctor told him that he was at a high risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, because his mother had also developed Type 2 diabetes at the age of 70 and not been able to control it.
He gladly accepted the invitation to join an NHS DPP group being run at St Anne’s Millennium Centre by LWTC facilitator Maureen.
He says: “I took it very seriously when Maureen talked to us about healthy eating in the first week. I did some research and started counting calories to ensure I would lose weight. I do tend to get quite stressed and my wife was worried that I was losing too much weight, so I mentioned that to Maureen.”
Maureen asked to see his food diary. “It was covered in numbers,” she recalls. “John has a thing about numbers! I explained to him that there is no need to count calories. All you have to do is follow a few basic guidelines for healthy eating and make different food choices. He understood then that there was no need to become anxious or obsessed about his diet.”
John does Tai Chi and walks a lot, to cope with his stress, so he gets plenty of exercise.
By week eight of the programme he had lost 6kg (around a stone) in weight and reduced his blood sugar levels to an HbA1c reading that was one above the normal range from a reading that was one point below having Type 2 diabetes.
John says: “I think the programme is excellent. I have found it educational and enjoyed meeting other people in the same situation and making new friends.”
Both John and Maureen are now looking forward to the day when his average blood sugar level reading falls completely within the normal range.