Abeer's diabetes prevention journey
What did you find useful about the group sessions? What stood out for you in your sessions?
The Diabetes Prevention Programme is good, I really like it! The information, and meeting/hearing ideas from other people really inspired me to change my lifestyle. There was lots of room for interacting with others during the remote sessions.
What changes did you make to your lifestyle, e.g. exercise routine, dietary, habits…?
When I heard that I was pre-diabetic, I stopped eating sugary foods and increased the vegetables and salad I ate. I started to exercise more regularly for about an hour a day. I drink a lot more unsweetened drinks now, especially warm drinks like tea. I began taking multi-vitamin tablets and I also started to eat foods like oily fish. I found that eating differently helped me to feel full and less hungry and the changes made me feel better and more comfortable.
Have you accessed any local services (i.e. leisure centres, exercise on referral) due to this programme?
I just did the exercise myself, especially because of COVID-19. So I did exercise on my own to keep myself safe.
What was your favourite part of the programme, why?
I really like the groups as we all had a chance to talk and share ideas with each other. It is great to be inspired by other people on the programme; their ideas and contributions helped me to make changes and I felt encouraged and supported.
What changes have you seen in any measurements that have been taken? E.g. HBa1c, waist measurement, weight, clothes size etc…
I was 80kg at the start of the programme. I was eating too much and not at all active. Now my weight is around 61kg. I have seen a big change in waistline. I feel a lot happier with my shape and the way I feel. My clothes are now fitting better and I feel a lot better.
Would you, or have you, recommended the programme to others? Why?
I would really recommend the programme for everyone, even those that are not pre-diabetic. All kinds of people will see a change in their lifestyle if they engage with the programme. They will be encouraged by other's lifestyle changes and the impacts that people are seeing in their health and wellbeing.
What would you say to those who are thinking about joining the programme?
I would encourage them to try the programme and see how it works. To take on board the encouragement and support from the coach and the other participants. It is great to see other people and their lifestyle changes. It is good to develop these relationships and support each other.
Are there any other comments you wish to make about your experience?
I would tell someone that they need to commit themselves to the programme and make suitable lifestyle adjustments. To reduce the amount of sugar and carbs they are eating. To increase the amount of exercise they are doing. By eating a range of healthier foods they will see changes in health and wellbeing. But you do not have to make radical changes, you can change slowly and surely and see the same impact.
I have been inspired to see other participants and the changes they are seeing by making small changes and the impact this is having on their lives. You do not need to change everything at once, but you can be sure that the small changes made will add up.