New NICE Guidance PH38 on the Risk Identification and Interventions for Individuals at High Risk of developing Diabetes has been published.
Although there are clear recommendations to address lifestyle issues as one of the ways to prevent people at risk from going on to develop diabetes, there are no recommendations regarding alcohol consumption.
The guidance reports that evaluation of diabetes prevention trials found that there is no evidence regarding the value of excluding or including alcohol as part of dietary interventions to reduce the risk of development of diabetes. However, the report does go on to state that there is an acknowledgement that alcohol does contribute to calorie intake.
The Guidance is published at the same time that Pulse reports that GPs have been asked to screen all patients over 40yrs for diabetes. The NHS Health Checks, however, do commonly screen for alcohol use and offer an opportunity to give brief advice on lower risk drinking. Nevertheless, hopes that alcohol screening on a national scale would be included in the Quality Outcomes Framework (QOF) were dashed when the QOF Advisory Committee blocked the roll out of targeted screening for alcohol abuse.