Type 2 Diabetes occurs when the body does not produce enough insulin or the insulin produced does not work properly and can be linked to lifestyle factors such as being overweight.
Figures have revealed that every week there are over 100 amputations due to people controlling their diabetes poorly.
It is well known losing weight and adopting a healthy diet can reduce the risk of developing diabetes.
However, now experts have revealed that maintaining the same weight as people get old can also help people prevent the condition – even in people who are considered to be overweight.
Experts have analysed data from more than 33,000 people aged 30 to 60 from a county in the north of Sweden.
Researchers had the participants’ weight and blood sugar measured twice – but ten years apart in a bid to see if their weight at the beginning of the study was linked to their diabetes risk.
They found that in ten years, under a third of people had maintained the same weight – and just over half had gained weight.
About a sixth of the participants had lost weight.
Critically however, the experts found that when comparing occurrence of newly diagnosed diabetes after 10 years in those who gained any weight to those who maintained their weight, the risk of diabetes was considerably lower in those who maintained their weight.
Experts said this was the case not only for people who were a normal weight, but also for those who were considered overweight.
A BMI of 25 to 29.9 is an indicator of being overweight.
The study said: “We have also shown that as many as one in five diabetes cases could be prevented if, at a population level, weight was maintained in adulthood.”
The study concluded: “Weight maintenance in adulthood is strongly associated with reduced incident diabetes risk and there is considerable potential for diabetes prevention in promoting this as a whole population strategy.”
The results of the study also found people who lost moderate amounts of weight had an ever lower comparative risk of developing diabetes – which experts said was an ‘expected’ outcome.
The study was published in the journal BMC Public Health.
This comes after it was revealed belly fat could be an indicator of metabolic syndrome, which is a condition described by a cluster of three or more risk factors which include abdominal obesity – fat around the middle, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
Experts said the condition affects one in four adults in the UK.