A walking programme pilot for people with diabetes has resulted in improvements in weight, blood pressure and sleep patterns for the twelve participants.

There’s plenty of evidence to show that physical activity improves the health and wellbeing of those with diabetes.  It can increase the amount of glucose used by muscles for energy and help the body use insulin more efficiently. Around 60% of cases of Type 2 diabetes can be delayed or prevented by making lifestyle changes, yet treatment accounts for fewer than 9% of the annual NHS budget equating to around £8.8 billion a year.

The walking group met twice a week and at the end of the 12 week programme half of the group were demonstrating positive improvements.  All but one participant lost weight and 60% had improved blood pressure.

Dr Stewart Tomlinson, a GP in Dorking, said: “The group offers a fantastic opportunity to exercise and socialise and helps to support improved fitness and achieve weight loss – key factors in maintaining good long health.

“Tips and ideas to manage diabetes are informally shared which helps to resolve the worries and concerns that some people with diabetes experience. I fully support this project which I know has been enjoyed by everyone who’s participated.”

You can find out more about walking groups in Surrey here