Team Type 1: Winning at the Diabetes Game
Check out a guest blog from Team Type 1's CEO and founder, Phil Southerland. He shares the work the team has been doing around the world for people with diabetes leading up to United Nation's “UNite
for a Healthy Future.”
Hello, and thank you in advance for reading. I wanted to update you on the work Team Type 1-SANOFI and I are doing for people around the world with diabetes, leading up to the UN Summit later this month. For those of you who don’t know me, I am 29 years old and was diagnosed with Type 1 at 7 months of age, and I am still living a great life with diabetes. Contrary to the doctors predictions of blindness and death, I am living and thriving free of complications. My goal, and that of Team Type 1, is to bring the story to you about living your dreams with diabetes, and controlling diabetes as a path to achieving success in life.
I have visited many countries which, had I been born there, there is no question that I would have been dead many years ago. This is one of the reasons it is so important for all of us to work together because WE all have a chance to make change for the outlook for ALL with diabetes.
Last month, I spent a week of volunteering at Camp Kudzu outside of Atlanta. This was a phenomenal week for me, as I got to spend it as a counselor for 13-14 year-old’s, while also getting to spend a lot time talking about life, and about diabetes to the entire camp. We were able to conquer fear, try new things, kids got dates to the dance, and most important of all they now have friends with diabetes for life. The goal was set to take the A1C Challenge, and strive for 6.5. Meanwhile I sent a bunch of money hungry kids home with the challenge to make a deal with their parents. A deal you ask? Yep, maybe it is $, maybe a concert, a movie ticket, a family trip to your favorite sports team, but it always includes some motivation to check blood sugar 8,10, 12 times/day, motivation to be more selective about food, motivation to do all the work that is truly needed to get an A1C of 6.5. Parents, would you make this deal with your kid? Youth of America, would something like this get you energized to begin making the few extra steps to get there?
I know it did for Joe (from 11 to 6.0 A1C) and for Alex (from 9.0 to 5.8) and for Morgan, who dropped from 17.3 to 6.1, all athletes who are part of Team Type 1. The diabetes game can be fun, and there can be rewards, and here in the US and in Europe we all have the tools needed to take this challenge and to win it.
On Sunday, September 18, I am going to be in New York with several athletes from Team Type 1 and we’re going to lead a bike ride around Central Park as part of “UNite for a Healthy Future.” The afternoon rally is being held to commemorate the 2nd Health Summit ever in the history of the United Nations (taking place September 19 & 20) and to increase awareness of the world’s leading killers -- diabetes, cancer, heart and chronic respiratory disease. Join us at 12:00PM ET in Central Park, at The New York Academy of Medicine and make sure your voice is heard. For more information about the ride and to register for the event, you can go to: http://www.idf.org/advocacy/un-summit-ncds/unite-healthy-future.
In my next post, I will talk a bit about “the other side of diabetes.”
Thanks for reading, and have a great day.