Prevention: Know Your Own Diabetes Risk

Prevention is better than cure. But how do I know if I am at risk of developing type 2 diabetes? The DIfE – GERMAN DIABETES RISK TEST® (DRT) provides important information on one’s individual risk. 

The DRT was developed by the DZD partner German Institute of Human Nutrition Potsdam-Rehbrücke (DIfE). The risk calculation is based on correlations that were observed in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) Potsdam Study – also known as the Brandenburg Nutrition and Cancer Study – with around 27,500 participants. The outstanding predictive quality of the DRT was confirmed in the EPIC Heidelberg study and in a sample representative for Germany, the Federal Health Survey 1998 (BGS98) cohort. 

Non-Invasive and Free of Charge to the Individual Risk

Using the non-invasive and free DRT, adults between the ages of 18 and 79 can determine their individual risk of developing type 2 diabetes within the next ten years. They answer eleven simple questions on non-modifiable factors (age, height, family history of diabetes) and modifiable factors (waist size, smoking behavior, high blood pressure, physical activity, consumption of meat, whole grain products and coffee). The evaluation of the test allows users to find out their personal risk and receive recommendations for action. 

One Test – Three Application Options

The DRT is freely available in different versions. In addition to the self-test questionnaire and the interactive online test, the patient questionnaire enables healthcare professionals to specify the diabetes risk along with the blood sugar value. 

The test is under continuous refinement. In the meantime, further risk factors have been included in order to also record the risk of stroke and heart attack. The online test at can be used to determine both the risk of diabetes and the risk of cardiovascular disease based on the common prediction parameters. The individual tests are also part of, the national diabetes information portal. 

Health Education and Prevention

The DRT has already been implemented in the guidelines of the German Diabetes Association as well as in the National Diabetes Communication of the Federal Center for Health Education (BZgA) and the National Diabetes Surveillance System of the Robert Koch Institute. The test is also used by health insurance companies, pharmacies, companies and associations as well as numerous media. 


Mühlenbruch K, ..., Schulze MB. Update of the German Diabetes Risk Score and external validation in the German MONICA/KORA study. Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2014 Jun;104(3):459-66. doi: 10.1016/j.diabres.2014.03.013. Epub 2014 Mar 28. PMID: 24742930.

Schiborn C, ..., Schulze MB. A newly developed and externally validated non-clinical score accurately predicts 10-year cardiovascular disease risk in the general adult population. Sci Rep. 2021 Oct 4;11(1):19609. doi: 10.1038/s41598-021-99103-4. PMID: 34608230; PMCID: PMC8490374.