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Sports scientists at the University of Birmingham are offering overweight men in the West Midlands the chance to improve their health and reduce the risk of developing diabetes, when they take part in a scientific study.

The University’s School of Sport and Exercise Sciences is looking for volunteers to take part in a study examining, exercise and its effects on preventing the onset of diabetes in overweight/obese people.

Professor Asker Jeukendrup, head of the project explains the importance of understanding how Type 2 Diabetes develops, “The link between Type 2 diabetes and obesity is well established. As we have seen obesity rates treble in the last twenty years, there has been significant rise in Type 2 diabetes. A high percentage of obese people have a level of insulin resistance, which can lead rapidly to diabetes.

Understanding more about the role exercise plays in preventing the onset of Type 2 diabetes has the potential to significantly improve public health advice. “

Study leader Michelle Venables explains the benefits of taking part in the study: “Although this is a scientific study we hope it will also make a positive impact on participants’ health and well-being. We are looking for men aged between 25-45, who currently lead a sedentary lifestyle. They need to be approximately 5’8” tall and between 13.5 and 16.5 stones in weight. In return, we can offer participants a personalised training programme, tailor-made to help burn fat, and supervised by experts in the private gym facilities of the School of Sport and Exercise Sciences. We can hopefully also offer advice on your diet and feedback on your general fitness levels.”

Participants will be required to come to the University’s Human Performance Laboratory on four occasions for preliminary tests. The team will then devise a personal training programme for every participant, consisting of up to 1 hour of exercise, five times per week for four weeks. At least two of these sessions per week need to be supervised at the School’s gym facilities. The laboratory tests will then be repeated at the end of the training programme.

Those potentially interested in participating should contact Michelle Venables from the School of Sport and Exercise Sciences on 0121 4148744 or by email on


Notes to Editors:

Facts on Obesity and Diabetes:

 • Around 90% of Type 2 diabetes is attributable to excess weight

• Physical inactivity amplifies the impact of weight gain on a person’s insulin resistance

 • There are over 2 million diabetics living in the UK – that figure is projected to rise to three million by 2010

• 25% of all UK adults are classified as obese compared with only 12% ten years ago.

Further information: Ben Hill – Press Officer, University of Birmingham tel: 0121 414 5134 / mob: 07789 921163 / email: