Date of release: Friday, November 13, 2015

Diabetes TrustPeople living with diabetes will be empowered to make lifestyle changes thanks to new research at the University of Greenwich.

Local charity Paula Carr Diabetes Trust is funding university experts to find out what support patients need to translate good intentions – such as healthy eating and regular exercise – into practice.

Lead researcher Dr Paul Newton says: "Controlling diabetes is about day-to-day things like diet, exercise and in some cases taking medication, all of which a person living with diabetes has to manage themselves.

"But people have a lot to juggle in their lives so changing their habits and routines can feel really difficult."

Dr Newton, Research Fellow at the university's Centre for Applied Health Research, argues that having the ability to manage their own condition isn't enough. Patients also need motivation, inclination and resources.

Researchers will ask patients in Kent and Medway, the area covered by the Paula Carr trust, what support they need to successfully self-manage. The study is called Promoting the involvement, engagement and empowerment of people living with diabetes.

The research team includes public health expert Dr Mustafa Al-Haboubi, and James Lambert as voluntary sector advisor. Formerly Corporate Development Manager at Volunteering England, James is the university's Faculty of Education & Health business manager.

Diabetes affects around 2.6m people in England and Wales and cases are on the increase. It costs the NHS about £25,000 a minute: that's £1.5m every hour.

The Paula Carr Diabetes Trust is a charity supporting people in Kent and Medway living with diabetes: http://www.paulacarrdiabetestrust.co.uk/

For more about studying with the university's Faculty of Education & Health: http://www2.gre.ac.uk/about/faculty/eduhea

To find out more about Greenwich Research & Enterprise: http://enterprise.gre.ac.uk/

Story by Public Relations