The theme of World Health Day is “Beat Diabetes”
I’m usually not a fan of people saying someone is ‘beating’ a disease. A very close friend of mine had cancer last year, and it would drive me crazy when people said “Keep fighting! Beat cancer!” Like anyone with a disease wakes up in the morning and thinks “I’m going to let my body win today lol”.
What does “beat” mean? I’m assuming we’re not referring to physically beating diabetes, however satisfying that may be. Can you imagine kneeing diabetes in the groin?! Amazing!
Beating a disease can mean so many things. It can mean eradicating it all together, or putting up a good fight. It can simply mean living your life, with your disease right alongside you. I personally think anyone with a disease is ‘beating’ it, simply by having it. On a micro level, we’re all bloody amazing. With the help of meds, injections, machines living in our bras etc., we beat it by living it.
On a macro level, do we need to beat diabetes? Abso-bloody-lutely. In 2012, diabetes was the direct cause of 1.5 million deaths. WHAT. More than 80% of diabetes deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries, which makes it even more important that we beat diabetes. Having a disease shouldn’t beat you down, or prevent you from living the life you want to, but the depressing fact of the matter is that with so many varying levels of access to and affordability of diabetes supplies around the world, this disease CAN stop you. People are spending their entire earnings on keeping themselves alive! Check out T1International to save me ranting on this issue.
By beating diabetes i.e. eradicating diabetes, we can improve the lives of everyone living with diabetes around the world, especially those who are the most vulnerable. However, there’s something important about this goal that we all have to remember.
People with diabetes are not a burden.
Diabetes is a burden. People with diabetes are not.
When talking about beating this disease, let’s keep our focus on what’s important. No-one asks to get diabetes, of any type, and it’s imperative that we focus on kicking diabetes’ butt, and not the butts of those who have it.