Enable2 and Healthy Lifestyle Solutions in Bradford teamed up to develop and pilot Enable2BHealthy, a 10-week healthy eating and exercise programme for people who are at risk of developing diabetes, or are prediabetic, with life-changing results.

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Not only did Enable2BHealthy report results of decreased weight and drop in blood sugar, but better health generally for those who participated.  

Sharon Cateral and Mick Speed both attended Enable2BHealthy. Sharon joined the programme in January 2017; she was on course to develop type 2 diabetes if she did not do something soon.

Her GP practice had advised Sharon to lose weight and take more exercise. She had several health issues including high blood sugar and blood pressure, and was generally unfit. Sharon was referred into and joined the Enable2BHealthy group at Tong Medical Practice where she took on board the recommendations of the blood sugar diet; reducing all sugar from her diet as well high GI foods. 

Sharon reduced her portion sizes, changed the way she prepared and cooked food and took up more activity, in particular walking. She saw instant differences in the way she felt and the way she looked, and lost 12.5lbs in just eight weeks! Sharon continued to lose weight, dropping even more dress sizes, and a more confident Sharon began to surface. 

The programme kept in touch with Sharon since she started Enable2BHealthy and are delighted to report that she has stuck with the lifestyle she adopted through the programme and that she says she feels amazing.

Mick Speed joined the Enable2BHealthy programme in September 2018. He was focused on improving his health as he had suffered some issues and just been diagnosed as prediabetic. He was concerned and joined the group to work on reducing his blood sugar levels and risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Mick never missed a session; he really concentrated on reducing sugar in his blood stream and maintaining steady blood sugar levels.

Mick developed a passionate interest in the labelling of sugar on food packages and the misrepresentation that can often be found. He is now an expert in the food industry’s labelling of sugar!

Whilst weight loss was not Mick’s main focus, he lost half a stone in weight during the ten-week programme and is absolutely delighted that his blood sugars dropped into the normal bracket: from 42 (prediabetic) to 35 (normal). Six months on and Mick has lost a little more weight and maintained his blood sugar levels. The changes to his dietary intake work well for him and it has become a normal way of life. 

Healthy Lifestyle Solutions develop and deliver programmes aimed at reducing health inequalities in disadvantaged areas of Bradford. They hosted the Enable2BHealthy programme in medical centres across south and east Bradford, including Tong Medical Practice, Sunnybank Medical Centre, Farrow and Rockwell Health Centre.

The programme introduces to participants the benefits of a Mediterranean diet and low GI foods. Physical exercises are taught by a qualified instructor, tailoring routines to make them easy to remember at home. Life coaching skills also feature, underlining the importance for de-stressing and using mindfulness techniques.

The incredibly positive results speak for themselves:

·         82.57% of the participants recorded a loss of weight

·         Collective weight loss was 125 kilos

·         37.50% of people lost 5% or more of their starting weight

·         28% of people reduced their blood sugar levels

Julie Wakefield, Chief Executive of Healthy Lifestyle Solutions who delivers the programme, noted that some of the participants did not start dieting until week two and it took some participants longer to implement diet changes. She said, “It is a long-term lifestyle change that shows health improvements.”

Participants said:

“Very relaxed and friendly class - helped me immensely.”

“Julie explained everything so well, really enjoyed it.”

“I feel that we gelled really well, we all got on and it was an enjoyable course.”

There was a lot of enjoyment gained for the participants on the programme, and plans to be healthier in the future. Two of the female participants even decided to take up dancing together after meeting on the programme!

The Enable2BHealthy programme has enabled life-changing outcomes for Sharon and Mick, but has brought about an improved outlook on life with better health to enjoy for all those who attended who are at risk of diabetes.