People living with diabetes don’t just need the latest and greatest tech, they need real solutions to unique problems! Kayla Mattingly always knew she wanted 3-4 kids from thestart, but never imagined two of her four sons would be diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. She rolled with the autoimmune punches, but an insulin allergy has her family and medical team scrambling for solutions. Type IV Hypersensitivity to insulin is rare, but she has found a handful of other parents who are looking for answers.
To all those who need to hear this – yes you can! This is the lifelong motto of Kristina Loskarjova, a woman who sets her mind to something and makes it happen while living her best life with T1D. She shares how taking a step back from the pressures of management could be exactly what you need to get back out and start living a fulfilled life. Kristina is an accomplished designer, entrepreneur and author who is sharing her story and those of other people living extraordinary lives with this disease.
While getting the diabetes diagnosis tends to put us on the back foot, we can choose to deal with it and refuse to let it define us. Tim White is a diabetes veteran who has been managing his diabetes for longer than I have. He is a well spring of wisdom and shares his story along with his experience on living his best life with diabetes for decades. Tim is a prime example that diabetes is not a death sentence, and its management is getting better every day. Continue reading →
What does someone who was thrust into the world of diabetes with no preparation do? They make animations of course! Jermaine Hargrove is the co-founder of Small Town Animation Studios, where he and his wife are impacting the diabetes space with the arts, specifically in the 3D animated films arena. His creative expertise and entrepreneurial spirit will help inspire people to better manage their diabetes. Let’s dive into Jermaine’s story and learn more about not all Superheroes wear capes, but some do wear CGMs. Continue reading →
I’m fascinated with diabetes care and advocacy efforts in other countries so I was thrilled to connect with Bridget, a fellow T1D making waves in South African healthcare. She goes above and beyond to ensure people living with diabetes have the information and tools they need to live their best life. South Africa has a long way to go and I feel confident Bridget will be leading the movement. Continue reading →
Kyle is a seasoned traveler and person living with T1D whose career path has been shaped by the bumps and bruises of living with this disease. He currently serves as the Chief Strategy Officer for DiabetesWise who has launched the DiabetesWise Device Finder, a tool created at Stanford University School of Medicine to help PWD easily identify the best technology for their personal diabetes management. Continue reading →
The Real Life Diabetes Virtual Happy Hour takes place every Thursday from 5 – 6:15pm CST. The event has nothing to do with alcohol, but is for adults living with diabetes or caring for someone living with this disease. Each week is filled with laughter, lame jokes, trivia and live music with people who get it from across the globe. Don’t be shy, pop in and make a new friend. CLICK HERE to register.
This impromptu episode was a no brainer when President Biden took office and put a freeze on past executive orders. The diabetes community flipped out so I contacted two friends who can help me and the DOC better understand what this really means. In this episode we discuss the EO freeze on insulin and grassroots advocacy efforts.
In gearing up for this epic unicorn episode I sincerely reflected on the impact becoming a diabetes advocate has had on my life. Two of the first people I discovered were Kerri Sparling and Scott Johnson. I had found my people! Reading their stories and watching them present at various conferences gave me the courage to “really” find my voice. The podcast and blog posts have lifted a huge weight, one I didn’t realize was there. I am truly blessed.
Today, January 7th, 2021 I celebrate my 29thyear on this beautiful planet and considering the current shit storm of world events and quarantine I would normally be sad, BUT connecting with my diapeeps every Thursday during the Real Life Diabetes Happy Hour has literally saved my life. I would love for you to join me tonight or any Thursday you are free to pop in between 5 – 6:15pm CST. Please be sure to register – CLICK HERE.
This birthday pic was taken three weeks before I was diagnosed with T1D and celebrating with other people who “get it” is a reminder – I am not alone and you don’t have to be either.
Manny Hernandez is a published author, recognized diabetes advocate, and speaker on the power of community for social impact who reminds us, while we are not on this journey by choice, it’s not a path we need to take alone. What better way to wrap up 2020 than with a brave soul who transformed his professional career to connect with others who understand similar challenges.
Dr. Allyson Hughes is a self-proclaimed animal lover, methodology geek and research scientist who collaborates with various industries to develop research projects from beginning to end, and advocates for health policy with the data she collects. Having been diagnosed with T1D herself, she knows all too well the struggles we face. This is what prompted her career path as a health psychologist dedicated to improving the lives of people living with diabetes.
Thankfully, many of us living with Type 1 diabetes have a supportive parent(s), but have we really taken time to think about how our diagnosis affected our loved ones. When Janet’s media kit fell on my desk, I knew I wanted to connect. Their story of strength and partnership as they navigated through this disease, both highs and lows, is a reminder – we are not alone. Continue reading →
I don’t know about you, but in kindergarten I wasn’t considering space exploration as a career path, but April stuck to her guns and achieved this goal even after a T1D diagnosis. Her calm demeanor, passion and journey to become an aerospace engineer is inspiring to say the least. She deserves to be the first person living with diabetes in space and absolutely shares my personal mantra to dream big – diabetes or not.
With a little friendly stalking I had the pleasure of chatting with two incredibly inspirational industry leaders, and self proclaimed friendemies, Sean Saint and John Sjolund. Their drive to succeed and multiple success stories mirror my mission to help improve quality of life for all people living with diabetes. They are entertaining to say the least and had me laughing throughout the interview while giving me hope for the future of diabetes management. Continue reading →
TheReal Life Diabetes Virtual Happy Hour takes place every Thursday from 5 – 6:15pm CST. The theme or activity has attendance growing because we have a TON of fun with folks who “get it”. This event is a great place to meet new people, connect with old friends and hopefully lift your spirits as you roll into the weekend.
Checkout a few fun pics below and be sure to click on the Happy Hour logo to register. Continue reading →
Can you imagine being diagnosed with T1D and five years later stating you’re in the best health of your life? In this episode, we’ll be learning more about my new friend from the land downunda’, Astra-Lia ‘Ozzy’ England. Several years ago, Ozzy would receive news from the doctor that would shake her world; a T1D diagnosis. In a matter of weeks, she went from living a relatively normal life (albeit with Celiac disease) to being put on insulin therapy. Her fiery personality and unapologetic curiosity about life with diabetes made her the perfect guest.
You don’t have to hide, let’s have the tough talks. In this episode you’ll learn why this is so important with guests Matt Tarro & Brandon Denson the Founders of Bolus Maximus. Matt and Brandon have created this community with a focus on filling a major void in the male community, the need for vulnerable connections for men dealing with diabetes. Both diagnosed at later ages, they know first hand how diabetes can get in the way of your goals and plans. Now they are on a passionate mission to help those grinding through this disease. Let’s jump right into their stories and start talking about some hard truths and good advice.
The Real Life Diabetes Virtual Happy Hour has brought SO many interesting PWD together. We thoroughly enjoy basic pub talk, poking fun, cracking jokes, live music, embarrassing some of us crappy trivia lovers, etc. Recently I connected with a woman who wowed me with her written word skills.
* I feel confident you will enjoy this reading as much as we did. Continue reading →
The battle against diabetes doesn’t have to be done alone, we need community. That is the mindset of today’s guests (yes plural!) the Diabuddies App Founders, Amy, Sarah and Charlene. As we dive in, you’ll learn how these ladies’ experience with diabetes led them to create something ALL people living with diabetes can support. Continue reading →
Who says an old dog can’t learn new tricks?! Repeat guest and dear friend, Mark Carter joins the show and shares how and why he has created a T1D backup plan. He has re-assessed and found better strategies that have left him feeling freer and refreshed. Let’s dive into Mark’s story and learn how finding the right physician and going back to the basics (MDI) got his diabetes back on track. Continue reading →
After decades of frustrating results and fed up with the type 1 diabetes roller coaster, Allison completely changed her life and diabetes management by switching to a low carb lifestyle. She took her new way of eating seriously and lost 55+ pounds and was able to get off all medications with the exception of insulin. This journey fueled her desire to learn more about how her own T1D body worked and to then share her message with others. Allison jumped head first into a series of nursing degrees and coaching certifications including pregnancy and pre-diabetes coaching. She is the real deal exemplifying how to both live well and support others in their journey with diabetes and achieving normalized blood sugars! Continue reading →
Reverend Bales story was one I could not pass up. While many of us living Type 1 diabetes quarantined, he hit the front line to serve the homeless community on Skid Row. He has lived with T1D for 48 years and hasn’t let this disease keep him from achieving his goals both physically and professionally. He is truly a hero! Continue reading →
Throughout his epic adventure, Mike went from couch potato to dropping around 100 lbs. in order to fulfill his dream of hiking the Appalachian Trail all while adjusting his diabetes management. It takes a lot of courage to completely overhaul your habits! His ability to plan all things hiking for 5+ months AND throwing in all the diabetes supplies traveling cross country blows my mind. This is only the beginning as he soon off to his next adventure. Continue reading →
After a recent announcement from Novo Nordisk I cleared my schedule to record this episode with Dr. Todd Hobbs, Chief Medical Officer for North America and Ken Inchausti, Senior Director of Corporate Communications. In this open discussion they share resources and cost saving programs, details about insulin production, insulin trials and what’s on the horizon for insulin therapies. I learned SO much about a drug I’ve been taking for decades!
After being rejected to join an insulin therapy clinical trial, I was determined to find someone who was able to participate. DDG’s newest team member, Cynthia Celt, connected the dots and hooked me up with Craig who shared his recent experience as a participant in a rather intense trial. Thank you Craig for temporarily donating your body to science to help fellow insulin dependent dia-peeps. Keep on trucking… jeeping you brave soul.
I connected with Kyle on social media and like many of my past guests, he shoots it to you straight about diet, exercise and his diabetes hacks. He isn’t shy and shares his opinion on lifestyle and offers HIS take on things without offering up medical advice. I was a little squeamish when Kyle shared details about a current trial he’s participating in, but eager to learn more about the advancements in CGM technology from someone who is walking the walk. Continue reading →
I felt compelled to write this post after reading a NY Times article about pandemic mortality rates over the decades. In 1999, I gave myself a graduation present to visit a friend in Paris, France to celebrate the millennium. My family warned against the trip because of the uncertainty of Y2K, but that didn’t stop me. My friend was a nanny for the US Ambassador and I knew my time in France would not be the typical tourist adventure. I headed out with a HUGE backpack and cannot recall what diabetes supplies were on board. Continue reading →
I stumbled upon a YouTube channel, Between Two Lines, that was informative and hilarious at the same time. In each episode, Levi shares his down to earth thoughts on a particular Type 1 diabetes related subject using a real talk, no sugar coating, approach. His dry wit and ability to make light of what living with this disease is like had me laughing and saying – man this guy gets it. Continue reading →
The dust has settled and the Real Life Diabetes Consulting team is back at home and taken a moment to reflect on our visit to the JDRF TypeOneNation summit in St. Louis. I love chatting with this crew and thought it was time to recap our roller coaster of events in Missouri. We aren’t shy and touch on personal take aways, connecting with new diapeeps of all ages, and how we battled our own diabetes debacles on this trip. Real life! Continue reading →
Yesterday, in a bit of a panic, I reached out to friends and family because I was scared, really scared. The ugly cry kept me from sharing my real fears – was it just a gallbladder episode or something worse? Within an hour, I was headed to the ER, but not before packing a bag – insulin, needles, pen needles, extra sensor, skin tac, tester, test strips, healthy snacks, low BG snacks, journal, phone charger and head phones. Continue reading →
Chris and his wife Candace are honest, vulnerable and a little sappy at times, but are the perfect reminder there are still good ones out there. You know, the ones who support you and your diabetes through the good, the bad and a serious hypo while educating their three kiddos along the way. Together, they resonate love, compassion and a supportive partnership and are role models for us all – diabetes or not. Continue reading →
It was just by chance our paths would cross at a T1D kiddo and parent support group. I rarely attend and Rebecca and her husband James were guests that evening. When we split off into another room, Rebecca shared her heartfelt story to the parents and there was not a dry eye in the room. For many of us who have lived with T1D for decades, sharing the impact this disease has on our state of mind can be difficult to recollect, much less share. Rebecca found the courage and is turning a life altering experience into a philanthropic dream.
This fearless forty something T1D does an incredible job of sharing her story. Cynthia is a T1D veteran who has challenged and/or been fired by an endo. or two, faced diabulimia head on, fearlessly experimented with the newest medications on the market and laughed at the thought of being a high risk, geriatric pregnancy. Continue reading →
I’ve taken the Real Life Diabetes podcast on the road and spent a fabulous, BUT way too short amount of time in Scottsdale, Arizona. What better way to kickoff this epic adventure than attending a Beyond Type 1 meet up? I am thrilled to publish Podcast 60 with one of the Beyond Type 1 hostesses, Lauren Bongiorno; virtual Diabetic Health Coach, Entrepreneur, and Author of the Diabetic Health Journal. Continue reading →
Kate Hall, is like many of us in the diabetes community – unstoppable and she decided early on that Type 1 diabetes won’t keep her from pursuing her dreams. She is an inspiration to us all and does a phenomenal job sharing her story on the road to becoming a 2020 Olympian.
After a long hiatus, I’m back and doing my best to use new technology… I chose to kickoff this new wave of podcasts with a “hot topic“, insulin affordability and accessibility. The DOC (diabetes online community) has been harping on this for ages, but as the topic is now international news after a recent wave of “published” deaths due to insulin rationing, it was time to chat with the author of Insulin’s High Cost Leads To Lethal Rationing, Bram Sables-Smith.
One of our favorite podcast guests is back! Back in the fall, he joined us on Podcast 32 where he shared his love of Chick-Fil-A, coffee, Equal and Omnipod. We highly suggest a retrograde listen before hopping into this show.
During this go round, we catch up on life, hear about an epic insulin prescription journey, discuss what diabetes maturity means, and laugh hard.
Diabetes is rough right? Even with a CGM and around the clock basal insulin from a pump, most days are still a grind! But staggeringly, across the globe insulin prices are accounting for up to 40% of monthly expenses, and people are walking 100 miles to get a prescription. Elizabeth Rowley, founder of T1International, is digging deep to gain awareness to the disparities in care and often inadequate access to standards in daily management, like strips and insulin. They campaign for systemic change that not only meets daily needs, but aims to solve the underlying issues in healthcare. If you’d ever like more information on the subject of diabetes across the globe, they are the knowledge hub.
We enjoyed the conversation with Elizabeth, challenging us to open our eyes to the diabetes experience outside of the US.
As a person with Type 1 diabetes, I’ve been frustrated in years past with the lack of advancement for the treatment of this disease. It wasn’t until about five years ago that I decided to stop complaining and take action. I asked myself the question – why aren’t things changing and what can I do to help? I did a bit of research and with the help of my regular physician, I was added to a list of diabetes related trials. I had no idea what I was in for, but knew it was something I had to do. Continue reading →
Happy National Diabetes Awareness Month! What better topic to write about than the impact the diabetes online community (#DOC) has had on my life. In previous posts, it was made clear time and time again how I did not fully appreciate the value of this random group of souls until I tapped in – I mean jumped into everyone’s lives. It was SO weird to be welcomed with open arms from folks I’d never met. Continue reading →
We got the green light to interview IndyCar driver and fellow guy with type 1 diabetes, Charlie Kimball. He not only keeps his car on the track, he stays out of the low BG pits. In this episode he shares his father’s in-car orange juice invention, his daily attitude, and how he became the (sort of) first T1D IndyCar driver. Continue reading →
While Ryan was studying for the boards, Amber gathered a few shoe lovers from across the country to discuss the “dream” shoe for PWDs. Maybe they didn’t find that “dream” shoe, but she enjoyed a lively discussion with guest, Shelene Kinsley, Tales From A Type 1 blogger, T1D and upcoming shoe designer. This episode was recorded in Oklahoma City’s own Betsy King Boutique. Betsy is a seasoned buyer and Amber appreciates her attention to detail when looking for the perfect high heel. Who knew that heels are better for your feet than flats? Seriously though. Continue reading →
Well, we warned you and now it’s time to share another episode of “Ask Us Anything“. In this episode, we received stellar questions from #DOC royalty and some brave souls who were kind enough to leave us a SpeakPipe message. Amber & Ryan share their deepest thoughts, not advice on diabetes complications, drinking bourbon, carb guessing in uncharted territory and how to encourage a “friend” to make healthier food choices. We’re keeping it real and sharing some laughs. Hope you enjoy the show.
Don’t they always say that Instagram brings people together? Actually, no, we’ve never heard anybody say that, but the rule applies when you’re vegan and have type 1 diabetes. Amy McKinnon, an Aussie originally, quit her job a few months back to explore the world, traveling the likes of Cuba, Peru, Mexico, and Ecuador. She and Ryan “met” on Instagram, probably while admiring each other’s photos of papaya or something strange of the sort. She too has felt the transformative power of a plant-based diet and joined us to share her own experiences with a vegan lifestyle. For fun—and honestly we mean this—she loves to go for casual 10 mile jogs. If you’ve ever been intrigued with the marathon running life but aren’t sure how to get started, she’ll tell us how to make it happen. Continue reading →
The DDG team is honored to be advisory board members for OU Harold Hamm Diabetes Center’s Camp Blue Hawk, a 5-day residential camp for children with type 1 diabetes that focuses on improving camper’s quality of life. In this podcast we chatted with high school student, twin, cello/bass playing and volleyball champion, Paul and his mother. He shares his honest reflection on what camp was like with stories of clean latrines, good food and forgetting he had diabetes. Continue reading →
The Winters family strive to live in the now, while grinding with two children with type 1 diabetes under the age of 7. They were the perfect guests as they’re honest and open about the daily diabetes struggles; highlighting the daily battles force-feeding when low or having to pull out the Glucagon pen. If a black light were involved, their home might resemble a CSI crime scene, but they choose to use laughter as their number one form of medicine. We chat low BG manipulation, misdiagnosis, trusting your gut, donut Fridays, rolling with the punches and doing everything in your power to provide a “normal” life with two boys living with diabetes. This isn’t your parenting “how to guide”, it’s real life and they’re learning along the way. Continue reading →
Over drinks with T1D friends one night, T1D Exposed founders, Kat and Tara, discussed fundraising ideas to support their beloved diabetes camp (where they had met the summer before), and other amazing diabetes non-profits. They laughed about how ridiculous it would be to start a T1D nude calendar… Well, in the time since its inception, The Nude Diabetes Advocacy Project has blown up! Tara allowed the DDG crew to probe her on the awkwardness of the shots, the beauty in the scars, and… the possibility of Ryan and Amber flying out to San Francisco for a shoot! Continue reading →
In the midst of a VIP cocktail hour LIVE from the Connect+Cure Gala in Oklahoma City, leaders on the diabetes research and treatment frontier were kind enough to converse with us. We didn’t focus on run of the mill research questions. We got to the heart of their individual diabetes motivations. We covered the importance of a physician’s own A1C, the equal importance of cowboy boots, favorite Toby Keith (he played a full concert that night) songs, and why both Amber and Ryan haven’t been dropped as patients for non-compliance… yet. As the night’s feature ceremony, the Hamm Prize–$250,000 for research advances toward a cure–was awarded to Dr. Ronald Kahn, and he joined us to share his enlightening perspectives (that’s not hyperbole, it’s truth).
After we wrapped up our interviews, we were honored to join 900+ people who support the Harold Hamm Oklahoma Diabetes Center’s (HHODC) future and groundbreaking strides toward eradicating diabetes. As Oklahomans, where 1 out of every 3 people is affected by diabetes, it was a meaningful night filled with promise. We are so grateful for the opportunity provided by the Harold Hamm Diabetes Center and appreciative of our guests to supply insights for all of us with diabetes. Thank you everyone! Continue reading →
Well, 2016 is officially here and the DDG crew has survived yet another eventful holiday season. With another year under our belts with all things that diabetes entails (using 4 total lancets, troubleshooting 129 high blood sugars for unknown causes, and Instagramming sunsets with insulin pumps in the foreground), we want to reflect on what all transpired in 2015 – lessons learned (some multiple times), blood sugar mysteries solved, and new adventures that sparked enlightenment. Continue reading →