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Colleagues learn important messages during Type 2 Diabetes Prevention Week

23rd April 2018

Awareness_stand.jpgDuring Type 2 Diabetes Prevention Week, the SCN Diabetes team held an awareness stand in the NHS England reception area at Preston Business Centre to help staff reduce their risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes by:

  • Making staff aware of the contents of our food and drink using the red, amber, green traffic light system on food labels, keeping an eye on sugar content and encouraging them to make healthier choices
  • Sharing ideas on ways to sit less and move more.

Staff learned about what Type 2 Diabetes is and how to find out if they were at risk of developing the condition over the next 10 years – using the Diabetes UK Know Your Risk online tool riskscore.diabetes.org.uk

The team shared simple tips such as marching on the spot or side stepping whilst cleaning your teeth, which would add four minutes of additional activity to your day! Many office-based workers nowadays are sat at desks all day - busy parents and staff who just don’t find the time to exercise. Check out some of the handy tips we shared to be more active during the day, without even realising you’re exercising:

  • Toolkit.jpgShare stationery as an office and keep it out of reach of your desk so that you have to get up to grab the scissors, hole punch or sellotape
  • When you’re having a cup of tea, take a sip and put it back down, repeat. You’d be surprised how much more stretching you can get in each day by not holding your cup constantly. Alternate arms - unless you’re really clumsy, in which case, stick with your dominant arm!
  • Park in a space further away from the building every other day and get some steps in
  • Walk while on the phone - this can also clear your mind.

Our hands-on diabetes board activity shared important warning messages around the hidden sugar in popular drinks and the high levels of sugar, fat and salt content in popular snacks such as cereal bars. This really helped hit home how we’re often unwittingly consuming large quantities of unhealthy food which could increase our risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes. The board included hidden images of diabetes health complications ranging from foot ulcers to amputation displayed with a ‘lift me if you dare’ cover.

“We hope we’ve given our colleagues food for thought (pardon the pun!) and enabled them to make some small lifestyle changes where they see fit - even if it is just cutting back on the bottles of fizzy pop.”

We had some really productive conversations around switching to lower sugar versions of the meals that we make, in order to keep added sugar to a minimum and stay below the recommended levels.

The real shockers of the day for staff in the building were:

Contents of their drinks - some brands had more than 7 sugar cubes / teaspoons per half a 500ml bottle!

Portion sizes – a 500ml bottle of pop is actually two portions!

Mel and Laura in the Diabetes team said: “We hope we’ve given our colleagues food for thought (pardon the pun!) and enabled them to make some small lifestyle changes where they see fit - even if it is just cutting back on the bottles of fizzy pop.”

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