The health checks organised by Jennie, our Health at Work programme coordinator, have been hugely popular with colleagues. In the past two years over 280 people have taken part and Doreen’s story proves how a few quick tests can put minds at rest or sometimes identify issues that need addressing.
Doreen always thought she was in good health – she exercised moderately, and thought she had a fairly well-balanced diet. So, she was surprised when she was told that her blood sugar levels were very high. A visit to her GP confirmed that she had type 2 diabetes.
Doreen’s diagnosis was a shock as she had no symptoms and there was no history of diabetes in her family. But, the good news was that the heath check had caught it early. She was prescribed medication, had an eye test and attended a DESMOND* course, which gave her the information she needed to come to terms with and manage her condition.
“My story highlights the value and importance of these heath checks, as they can identify issues before they become a real problem. I’m really glad I got myself checked.”
Doreen decided to fight her diabetes – she started exercising: she walks her dog twice a day; swims at least once a week; has cut down on sweet treats; drinks only diet soft drinks; uses sweetener in her coffee and starts each day with a healthier breakfast.
Six months on and these small changes to her lifestyle have paid off – Doreen’s lost one and a half stone and her blood pressure and blood sugar levels have reduced considerably.
“I’m so happy to have lost weight. And it was very easy to do – apart from the small changes I’ve made I’m eating just the same as I always have. I’ve got much more energy now and my diabetes is under control.”
*DESMOND is the collaborative name for a family of group self-management education modules, toolkits and care pathways for people with, or at risk of, type 2 diabetes.