Twenty six young Indians with type 1 diabetes (T1D) surmounted the breathtaking Chandrakhani Pass at 13,000 ft. in the Himalayas, proving that anyone with this disease can pursue challenges that otherwise seem impossible. With last year's success of the first T1D Challenge held in Maharashtra (at 5400 ft.), Sanofi India along with Diabetes India stepped up the initiative with a bigger challenge this year with 'India's 2nd T1D Challenge 2018 - OneUp Trek'.
Young trekkers aged 15 to 30 years from 16 cities across India, participated in this challenge to bring type 1 diabetes to the fore, and bust myths about the disease.
N. Rajaram, Managing Director, Sanofi India said, "India accounts for most children with type 1 diabetes within South-East Asia and this number increases by 3-5% every year1. Sanofi India introduced the 'OneUp Trek' to empower children with type 1 diabetes and give them the opportunity to explore their potential in an encouraging and supportive environment. We are proud of these young, enthusiastic individuals who have not only shown tremendous courage, but have also exhibited extraordinary discipline and responsibility in effectively managing their diabetes through the trek."
Dr. Banshi Saboo, Diabetologist and Executive Secretary, Diabetes India, said "Coming from diverse backgrounds and different parts of the country, these 26 young trekkers united to establish one fact that 'nothing is impossible'. Their courage and determination in the face of a challenging terrain is commendable and an inspiration to others living with the disease. This trek was also a demonstration of the fact that with the right kind of awareness, preparedness and motivation, people with type 1 diabetes can pursue any challenge. Discipline is the key, which comes with a controlled diet, regular monitoring of blood sugar and timely insulin".
He added, 'It is imperative that we give people living with type 1 diabetes a platform to explore their potential and empower them to live optimally. Sanofi India has rightfully pioneered this initiative and we plan to make this bigger and more meaningful, each year."
An essential part of each participant's trekking gear was a compact diabetes kit containing a glucometer, insulin and syringes or an insulin pen. During the trek, they had to monitor their blood sugar at least seven times a day to make sure it was well controlled. All meals were planned in advance to ensure a balanced mix of protein, carbohydrates and fat.
Talking about his patients, Dr. Banshi Saboo further added, "My patients try to be regular in controlling their diet, monitoring glucose levels and administering insulin. They have shown a lot of discipline and courage in taking on this challenge, and I am very proud of their accomplishments."
Living with type 1 diabetes presents a unique set of challenges and people who are diagnosed with it must learn to adapt a lifestyle of control and regulation. It's a matter of adopting the 'fighting' attitude, if one wants to truly beat this disease.
The young trekkers' who took part in 'OneUp trek' have truly illustrated that with a wellcontrolled lifestyle, the right attitude and proper disease management, it is possible to take on any challenge and achieve every dream.
1 K.M Prasanna et al 'Consensus statement on diabetes in children 2014 - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4056121/
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