Diabetes is tough enough as it is.
It’s constant. For those of you who don’t know, here’s a small insight into our world.
You wake up. What are my levels? Am I high, low? Are they ok? How do I feel? *Pricks fingers, blood on strip, check, record, act accordingly*.
Go eat breakfast – what do I have? How much insulin do I use? If I’m exercising this morning how much shall I account for that? Inject background insulin. Inject fast acting insulin. Already, I’ve had something sharp in me 3 times today.
Right, I’m at the gym. I’m sure I’ve eaten enough to keep me going and make sure I don’t have low blood sugar. I need to train, it makes dealing with my diabetes easier and keeps me healthy. Once I’m done *prick finger, blood on strip, check, record, act accordingly*. I need to eat, post workout nutrition according to my goals – I’ve thought about this the day before so I know what I need to eat, do I need insulin after my workout? How much? *Inject fast acting insulin* Will my workout affect my levels later on during the day? Will I be low? Or high?
I haven’t even gotten to work at 8am and that’s my day so far.
I haven’t even gone into how dreadful it is to have a hypo (low blood sugar), how exhausted you feel with high blood sugar, alcohol, eating out, making sure you’re aware of how you feel throughout the day constantly. Watching what you eat and do constantly. You don’t get a break. And even when you sleep, you aren’t safe. There are constant stories of diabetics passing out in their sleep due to low blood sugar and in some cases, dying because of low blood sugar.
What doesn’t make it easier is the mass tabloid media. And it’s a pain.
I’d like to point out this isn’t all media! There are a lot of journalists out there who are very educated on the matter and do tremendous work on educating their readers on diabetes and various other conditions. This rant is aimed at the tabloids that are just being purely ignorant and irresponsible.
Here are some examples of what I’m talking about. I won’t link the articles as I don’t want to give the sites the traffic.
Some of these make me hold my head in my hands and scream! It’s just pure ignorance and massively irresponsible.
Let’s start with the brutal truth.
At this time, there is no cure for Type 1 Diabetes. Sorry to be blunt but any article from any Daily Blah tabloid claiming otherwise is just lying. Diet and exercise will not cure or reverse it. It may make living with it easier, but that’s about as good as it gets for now.
And sorry, chocolate cannot beat any form of diabetes…….!
If you speak to the average person in the street I imagine their view of someone with diabetes is someone who is overweight, doesn’t exercise, eats too much and the way to “cure” it is too eat less sugar.
Now, the majority of diabetics who I know in person and follow and speak to on social media are ANYTHING but the “stereotype” of what diabetes is. They’re healthy, exercise, eat well, are aware of their condition and what they can do to manage their own diabetes as best they can, enjoy their diet and relax is every now and again and to the average person, you wouldn’t have a clue that they were diabetic.
So to be labelled by the tabloids as “unhealthy”, to me, is very insulting and frustrating. I, like many others, live with a condition that I did nothing to deserve. My lifestyle did not cause it and any choices I have made did not cause it. It’s one of the most talked about conditions in the media, but ultimately I feel, one of the least understood.
However. We as diabetics, either Type 1 or Type 2, can do a lot to alter that mass perception of our condition. By being more vocal and trying to educate a few people at a time, that general perception will change – even if it’s one at a time – we can change this and make it little bit, just a little bit, easier to live with.