Researchers believe giving people aged over 40 a 'Health MOT' could prove crucial in fending off conditions such as diabetes.
Experts at the University of Leicester estimate that as many as 500,000 Brits live with chronic and potentially fatal conditions without realising it.
They say that regular check-ups would lead to health issues being identified early, leading to people living longer and healthier lives.
Dr Kamlesh Khunti, professor of primary care diabetes and vascular medicine at the University Hospitals of Leicester, said: "If we identify them and implement all of the evidence-based treatment then it should lead to better outcomes - less heart attacks, less stroke and less mortality for those patients which is exactly what these checks are all about."
Bridget Turner from Diabetes UK added that the study highlights the huge potential NHS health checks have to identifying people at high risk of Type 2 diabetes and related conditions.
The study is published in the journal PLOS ONE.