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Obesity may stop GPs hitting diabetes targets

Many patients whose type 2 diabetes is managed by diet alone need more vigorous control of their disease, a new study concludes.

Almost a third of people with diabetes are managed only by diet, yet these patients are more likely to have raised blood pressure and cholesterol and less likely to be monitored than those on medication, the study found.

Researchers studied 7,870 patients with type 2 diabetes across 42 UK general practices and found 31 per cent were managed solely by diet, with substantial variation from practice to practice.

The study, published in The Lancet (July 31), showed diet-managed patients had much higher rates of diabetes-related complications than the population as a whole, although rates were lower than in patients on medication.

Study author Dr Julia Hippisley-Cox of the University of Nottingham said there was a case for better routine surveillance and more intensive therapy if glycaemic control, blood pressure or cholesterol were 'not optimum'.

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