Diabetes Week 2019 - #SeeDiabetesDifferently

The theme for this year's Diabetes Week was all about Seeing Diabetes Differently. What's great about the themes set by Diabetes UK is that they're open to interpretation. So the way that I interpreted the theme was as an opportunity to show people, perhaps who aren't aware of/ have a background knowledge of diabetes, about the thoughts, processes, actions we go through when living with the condition, each day.

Day 1
As sport and diabetes are what I get asked most about and of course the topic of my blog, this seemed like a great place to start, as I find that there are quite often two camps on the topic. The first is that when running and racing, others don't see a person with type 1 diabetes and so don't understand that there's a lot to consider, prepare for and do in order to get to the start line. On the other side, there may be people that think that sport isn't something achievable with a chronic condition.

Day 2
Following-on from sharing my own journey showing that sport or physical activity is possible with type 1 diabetes, I released a video that you can watch on my instagram and twitter about the other sports people in the diabetes community who are doing great things in sport- From Mohammad Ali the boxer to Henry Slade the rugby player, with many different sports in between.

Day 3
Nutrition and its management plays a really central role to diabetes, particularly counting carbohydrates and matching it to insulin dose, such as in type 1 diabetes. So day 3 was about seeing meal times differently... When somebody without diabetes has something to eat, they might be thinking about the taste, or the texture. Whilst someone with type 1 diabetes might be thinking about how many carbohydrates are in the meal, counting them to match their pre-determined carb to insulin ratio for that time of the day. They might also be considering whether there is protein and fat in the meal and how that might impact the behaviour of the carbohydrates and their digestion.

Day 4
But Diabetes Week isn't just about raising awareness amongst people without the condition, it's also an opportunity to connect with the diabetes community and online is a great place to do that. So on Thursday I had the pleasure of doing an Instagram takeover for the charity JDRF UK, the country's biggest charity for people with type 1 diabetes. The theme of the take over was 'a day in the life of', as I shared a typical day's nutrition in preparation for and recovering from training, blood glucose levels, coaching and sprints training. It was great fun to do and lovely to engage with JDRF's audience online.

Final Day
The final day of Diabetes Week was a call to action, as it's great to have a designated time to do diabetes advocacy and raising awareness, but it musn't end here!


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Meet The Author

My blog takes you through a daily look at sport, diabetes and everything in between. As an athlete that lives with type 1 diabetes I want to let you into news, views and all that is important to both of my passions.

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