Trigger Warnings – None
Hello internet, I’ll begin by telling you I had great fun last night with some great people and although not everyone could make it, everyone who did had a blast and was splendid company and it reminded me that no matter how bad things get, I’m surrounded by some truly brilliant characters. Anyway, if you’re British you’re probably well aware that today is Children In Need day. I’m not doing an article on that, I’m sorry, my say on the matter is rather unnecessary with the celebrity phone-in donation mega events and all the crazy costume wearing fundraisers in every nook and cranny but I am here to represent something, something that is being overlooked today in favour of yellow teddy bears and spotted handkerchiefs
Today is World Diabetes Day, perhaps my American or European audience was aware but the British, probably not so much, it’s a shame two big days coincided and to coincide with Children In Need is always rubbish, you get overlooked (I should know, my birthday has done so on several occasions when I was a kid so on my birthday everyone was more wrapped up in cakes and fun runs than giving me any attention and hey I was a kid, I wanted attention)
So what can I do to represent my cause? Well, if you live in the UK, look up Diabetes UK, that’s a good place to start and it tells you what you can do to make a difference and I know I’m not doing much, I only hear of these things ON the day, same with Asexuality Week and OCD Awareness Week and so on and then I want to do something, partly because I then have guaranteed readers, mostly because I do genuinely give a shit.
Diabetes, like a lot of illnesses, is misunderstood, it is not as simple as being the end result of eating like a pig all your life and then being very very ill as payback. Diabetes comes in two types and you can usually either be born with it or be diagnosed later in life and the best way to remember the types is Type 1 is a lack of insulin for the cells (A padlock with no key) and Type 2 is the body not responding to the insulin in the body (A padlock with no keyhole). Basic but it’s a starting point to build on. The condition is lifelong and affects someone with it in pretty much everything they do, they must be much more conscious of what they eat and do than those without. Diabetes is no rare thing, we all know it exists and last year it was predicted around 382 million people worldwide are diabetic, 90% being Type 2
So what’s Type 1 and Type 2? Type 1 is the one you are born with, it is your own body destroying insulin before it can help you digest so the resulting build up of glucose (sugar) becomes damaging and this leads to a dependence on external-insulin. Type 2 is a failure to produce enough insulin or the body not responding to it, it’s often associated with obesity and is normally treated through medication
Being a diabetic obviously affects your lifestyle choices and it’s no laughing matter, we all like to make a joke about it, what with the Diabetus meme being a fad a while ago but in truth it’s not fun to live with, from what I’ve heard. I’m not trying to be an overly politically correct stick in the mud but just remember that it’s a serious plight for those who live with it, like any illness or condition. The recommended plan of action for diabetics is to avoid foods high in sugar and salt, eat less fatty junk, snack more on fruit and get at least two hours of moderate physical exercise a week, which in all fairness is probably a good idea for anyone so kudos to those who manage, I’d struggle and I technically don’t even need to, I’m not technically overweight
Still, any setback is something to overcome so don’t go babying the diabetics, they obviously still function well in society and go on to achieve great things in their own lives, they’re nothing less for a bit of an insulin issue. I’m sorry to rain on the Children in Need parade of joy and funny antics to save starving orphans, support that by all means, but this is an issue that affects someone close to me so I’m writing this for them and for you all. Once again, it’s about educating yourselves, don’t assume you know something just because you hear the word tossed around, do a little read around, talk to people, the pursuit of knowledge is one of the best bits of being alive!