According to Diabetes UK, there are “3.8 million people living with a diagnosis of diabetes in the UK”, and 90% of these people have type 2 diabetes. What’s more, almost 1 million more people living with type 2 diabetes are unaware they have it because they haven’t been diagnosed yet.
Diabetes can cause severe damage to the eyes, as well as increase your chance of heart disease, stroke and kidney disease. Therefore, it’s important to get regular health check ups to ensure you’re aware of your diabetes risk. Blood tests like the At Home Health MOT are an accurate way to measure your diabetes risk so that you can make informed lifestyle decisions that help you manage your health.
What is diabetes and who is most at risk?
Diabetes is a disease that causes the level of sugar in the blood to become too high. There are two main types of diabetes: type 1 and type 2.
Type 1 diabetes: this form of diabetes occurs when the body doesn’t make insulin, because the immune system attacks and destroys insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. Type 1 diabetes is mostly diagnosed in people below the age of 40 (although people over 40 can still be diagnosed with it). Unlike type 2 diabetes, your risk of developing type 1 is unaffected by your lifestyle or weight, which means losing or gaining weight - or making certain lifestyle choices - won’t change your risk of developing type 1 diabetes.
Type 2 diabetes: this type of diabetes is the most common, as it affects 90% of people with diabetes. It occurs when your body does not make or use insulin well, and it’s most common in middle-aged and older people. Certain people are more at risk of type 2 diabetes, including:
- People over 40.
- Those with a family history of diabetes.
- People of south Asian, Chinese, African Caribbean or black African descent.
- Those who are overweight or obese.
You can reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes by maintaining a healthy weight, lifestyle, and diet. It’s also a good idea to get your blood sugar level tested with a blood test so you are aware of your diabetes risk.
How does the At-Home Health MOT test for diabetes?
The At-Home Health MOT is a finger prick blood test that measures your HbA1c (glycated haemoglobin) level to determine your diabetes risk. Your HbA1c level tells you what your average blood sugar levels have been over the last 2-3 months. A high HbA1c level indicates whether you have, or are at risk of developing, diabetes.
To measure your HbA1c level with the At-Home Health MOT, simply collect a small blood sample using the equipment provided with your kit, post it free of charge to our accredited partner lab, and you’ll receive your results within 3-5 working days.
It’s easy to use and comes with a free follow-up phone consultation with a UK doctor who will give you personalised advice based on the results of your test.
What are the symptoms of diabetes?
Sometimes, people with diabetes have symptoms that are so mild that they go unnoticed. This can eventually lead to health problems, so it’s important to have regular health check ups to make sure your blood sugar levels are normal.
The common symptoms of diabetes include:
- Increased thirst.
- Frequent urination.
- Unexplained weight loss
- Extreme hunger.
- Blurred vision.
- Slow-healing sores.
- Frequent infections, such as gums or skin infections and vaginal infection.
- Tingling, pain, or numbness in the hands/feet.
Detecting and treating diabetes early enough can decrease the risk of developing health problems caused by diabetes.
The bottom line
Diabetes is a disease that can lead to a range of complications, including strokes, heart attacks, kidney disease, loss of vision, and nerve damage. It’s recommended that you regularly check your blood sugar levels with an At-Home Health MOT to assess your diabetes risk. The risk of developing type 2 diabetes (the most common form of diabetes in the UK) can be reduced by maintaining a healthy weight, diet, and lifestyle.