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“Diabulimia” affects one in three girls

One in three young women with diabetes may be missing their daily insulin injections to lose weight, say Diabetes UK.

This translates into 3,000 teenage girls in the UK who suffer from "diabulimia".

Diabetes UK says it is very difficult to know precisely how many young people are abusing insulin to lose weight, as not many admit to it at the time.

"This eating disorder is extremely dangerous," says Science Information Manager Matt Hunt at Diabetes UK.

He adds that if blood glucose levels become too high for too long, serious complications such as blindness, cardiovascular disease, kidney disease and nerve damage can result.

"Teenagers and young adults need appropriate and rapid access to psychological care and support to help them manage their condition effectively," says Hunt.

"There also needs to be improved transitional care services from children to adult diabetes services, which, at present, do not always adequately address young adults' needs."

He acknowledges, however, that many young people with diabetes manage their conditions effectively and live full and healthy lives.

Diabetes UK

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