Type 2 diabetes is a condition affecting an increasing amount of people. GAYNOR CLARKE speaks to a fitness expert who believes he can help.
A personal trainer starting his own business has made it his mission to help people with diabetes.
Mark Parkinson, 34, believes he could help people with type-2 diabetes to control their condition through losing weight and following a healthy diet.
So when he launched his personal training business, Studio Three, he decided to specifically help people with diabetes.
Mark, who is based at Botany Bay, near Chorley, said: “Type-2 diabetes is reversible. It can be changed through healthy living and healthy eating.
“I have a friend with type-2 diabetes, and I want to help a lot of other people who don’t know how to get control of their diabetes and get fitter.”
According to Diabetes UK, between 85 and 95 per cent of all people with diabetes have type-2, and it is treated with a healthy diet and increased exercise.
It usually appears in people over the age of 40, but is becoming more common in younger people.
Mark, a father of two, said: “There are so many people getting it now. It’s become common that people get type-2 diabetes, either later in life or earlier and earlier.
“By changing eating habits and exercising a couple of times a week, it can help them either not get it as early, or completely reverse it so they don’t have to suffer from it.”
Mark is a qualified personal trainer, and previously worked as general manager of a health club in Lancaster.
He uses his experience to run exercise sessions to help people shed the pounds, including those without diabetes.
And he will get a helping hand from his business partner and brother-in-law, Leeds United footballer David Norris, who plans to get more involved with the business when he retires from the sport.
The pair hope to eventually have a “pod” housing their own fitness studio, close to the current base at Botany Bay.
Mark says he has done a lot of research into how he could help people with type-2 diabetes.
“I strongly believe it’s not about cutting anything out of your diet, it’s about timing your eating correctly, ” he said.
“The types of food that people do choose should be more protein-based, rather than carbohydrate-based.
“It means the insulin spike isn’t as high and you feel fuller.”
Mark will keep a close eye on his clients’ health, and has equipment for monitoring their blood pressure, body fat percentage, blood sugar and other factors.
The information can be passed on to their doctor.
And he believes he can make a long-term impact on the health of his clients.
Mark said: “It’s not just about delivering exercise sessions, it’s about changing people’s lifestyles, changing their habits and looking at different behaviours.
“People can learn how to develop these habits and go away and keep on doing these things, so they are not stuck with a trainer forever.”