I have met a number of young people in the electorate living with type 1 diabetes and it is truly remarkable to hear about their positive outlook on life considering the obstacles they live with each and every day.
I met Caitlin yesterday and she told me that living with type 1 Diabetes means inflexible routines, constant blood sugar monitoring, the juggling and adjusting of insulin, food and acvitvity levels.
One of the most frustrating things for people living with type 1 Diabetes is when people assume type 1 is related to poor lifestyle choices like eating too much sugar.
Type 1 Diabetes occurs when the pancreas stops making insulin. Without insulin the body burns its own fats as a substitute and unless treated with daily injections of insulin people with type 1Diabetes can accumulate dangerous levels of chemical substances in the blood which can lead to death.
Like other youth ambassadors for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Caitlin’s diagnosis occurred early in life, when she was just 22 months old.
She has had over 22,550 insulin injections and has pricked her finger to check her blood sugar levels over one million times.
Caitlin has learned that diabetes does not have to control her life, it is incorporated into her life instead and this positive outlook has made her a perfect ambassador for the “Promise to Remember Me” campaign.