Prevalence of diabetes and impaired glucose metabolism in younger 'at risk' UK adults: insights from the STAND programme of research

E G Wilmot, C L Edwardson, S J H Biddle, T Gorely, J Henson, K Khunti, M A Nimmo, T Yates, M J Davies

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


AIMS: Rising rates of obesity have led to an increasing prevalence of Type 2 diabetes mellitus in young people. Uncertainty exists over the utility of screening younger adults for Type 2 diabetes, as existing data sets have focused on mature (> 40 years) cohorts. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of impaired glucose metabolism in higher risk younger adults.

METHODS: Overweight (with an additional risk factor) or obese adults (18-40 years) were recruited for the Sedentary Time And Diabetes (STAND) randomized controlled trial. Measures included an oral glucose tolerance test, HbA1c , biochemical and anthropometric data.

RESULTS: One hundred and ninety-three individuals (68% female; median age 33.8 years; median BMI 33.9 kg/m²) were recruited. Forty-three per cent had a first-degree family history of Type 2 diabetes. Previously undiagnosed Type 2 diabetes was present in 4.7% (n = 9). Of participants, 18.1% (n = 35) had impaired glucose metabolism: 4.7% (n = 9) HbA1c ≥ 48 mmol/mol (6.5%); 9.3% (n = 18) HbA1c 42-46 mmol/mol (6.0-6.4%); 3.1% (n = 6) Type 2 diabetes on oral glucose tolerance test; 6.2% (n = 12) isolated impaired glucose tolerance; 2.1% (n = 4) isolated impaired fasting glucose; 1% (n = 2) both impaired fasting glucose and impaired glucose tolerance. Of participants, 58.5% (n = 113) had dyslipidaemia, 28.0% (n = 54) had hypertension, 31.1% (n = 60) were vitamin D deficient and 7.3% (n = 14) had abnormal liver function.

CONCLUSIONS: This study identified a high prevalence of Type 2 diabetes and impaired glucose regulation in overweight and obese younger adults. These findings require confirmation in a larger, representative, population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)671-5
Number of pages5
JournalDiabetic Medicine
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2013

Bibliographical note

© 2013 The Authors. Diabetic Medicine © 2013 Diabetes UK.


  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Body Mass Index
  • Cohort Studies
  • Comorbidity
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2
  • Dyslipidemias
  • Family Health
  • Female
  • Glucose Metabolism Disorders
  • Great Britain
  • Hepatic Insufficiency
  • Humans
  • Hyperglycemia
  • Hypertension
  • Male
  • Obesity
  • Overweight
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Factors
  • Vitamin D Deficiency
  • Young Adult


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