A charity in Britain has warned that people who are the poorest in the country may be more than twice likely to develop diabetes at any age, compared to the average person.
Diabetes UK further states that people with the condition, who live in the most deprived homes, are also twice as likely to develop complications.
AdvertisementThe organisation enumerated obesity, lack of exercise, poor diet, and smoking among the factors to blame.
The charity points out in its study report that women living in homes with the lowest income in England are more than four times as likely to get diabetes as those who live in homes with the highest income.
It further says that diabetes in Wales is almost twice as high in the most deprived areas compared to the least deprived.
Considering al that, Diabetes UK Chief Executive Douglas Smallwood stressed the need for action to prevent a generation of people living in deprivation "ending up in an early grave".
He said that health authorities needed to raise awareness among those at high risk.
"In addition, the NHS must ensure that appropriate, high quality care is available across the country and that everyone, regardless of their socioeconomic status, is accessing it," the BBC quoted him as saying.
"Research has shown that people with diabetes in deprived or high ethnicity areas are less likely to have key health checks, putting them at increased risk of developing devastating complications such as heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, blindness and amputation.
"Finally, in these times of economic uncertainty when people are more likely to turn to cheaper, processed foods, food labelling must be clear and consistent to allow people to make informed choices about what they are eating," he added.
Professor Alan Maryon-Davis, president of the UK Faculty of Public Health, was not surprised at the figures because he felt that the risk factors for diabetes were very closely associated with deprivation and hard to tackle.
"We do need to target efforts at the most vulnerable," he said.
He further said that the national vascular screening programme, which started in April and was still gearing up, would help diagnose people and help them manage the illness.
"But we need to set up a proper call and recall system, we can't just wait for people to go to the GP, it has to be done in a more active way," he said.