Online Calculator Predicts Risk of Developing Diabetes

As we have mentioned quite often, there is continuous, aggressive research around the world regarding diabetes. It seems that daily we hear about a new medication, a different type of glucose meter, a food or vitamin/herb that helps with regulating glucose, and many, many more positive tools in the fight against diabetes.

There is now another tool in that fight. British scientists have developed an online tool for predicting your risk of developing adult-onset diabetes. The researchers examined medical records of more than 2.5 million people over 15 years, excluding patients who already had diabetes or whose records were incomplete. They found nine significant risk factors: age, ethnicity, body mass index, smoking status, socioeconomic level, family history of diabetes, diagnosis of cardiovascular disease, hypertension and use of steroid drugs.

They calculated the relative importance of each of these factors, and incorporated them into a formula, or algorithm, that quite accurately predicts the 10-year risk for Type 2 diabetes.

Their study has been recently published online and there is now an interactive online version of the algorithm at According to Dr. Julia Hippisley-Cox, the lead author, two of its features — postal code and ethnicity — were specific to Great Britain, but that the algorithm will “give you a fairly accurate notion anyway,” even without specifying those two factors.

Dr. Hippisley-Cox, who is a professor of epidemiology at Nottingham University, added that for individuals who fill out the online test and are deemed at risk, weight control or weight loss – especially through a healthy diet – and exercise are essential. “Those are the interventions that have been tested,” she said. “If you play around with the obesity measure, you can see how your risk will change if you lose weight.”

Studies in diabetes have come a long way. Looking back even a decade ago researchers could barely imagine if and when these incredible sources of assistance in the fight against diabetes would ever become realities and how long it would take. Here we are now in a time when research is snowballing, information and tools are becoming more and more available at little or no cost and researchers have actually found a way to predict whether or not you are a candidate for diabetes. The amazing insinuation with this most current finding is that if you find out in advance, there may be things that help you avoid ever getting diabetes or at least delaying the onset and minimizing the effects if you do develop the disease.

What do you think they will think of next?

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