Across the USA, racing has become a popular way to raise funds for charity. The American Heart Association has its walk for heart disease; the Susan G. Komen “Race for the Cure” raises funds for breast cancer research; runners can raise funds for any number of charities through the Boston Marathon. There’s also The Walk to Cure Arthritis, the Kidney Walk – the list of benefit races goes on and on.
One national walk we recently read about really caught our eye because of the number of participants: one. One little boy, 10-year old Noah Barnes, began walking in January from Key West, Florida and intends to walk clear across the country to Portland, Oregon by the end of 2017. His cause? Raising awareness and funds to find a cure for Type 1 diabetes.
What is Type 1 diabetes?
Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is the body’s inability to properly make the hormone insulin. It’s considered an autoimmune disease – immune system antibodies attack cells in the pancreas that are responsible for producing insulin. There’s nothing you can do to prevent it, your diet has nothing to do with who gets it, and there’s no cure.
T1D is usually diagnosed in children and young adults. Noah was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes when he was 16 months old. Like all kids with the disease, he has to monitor his blood sugar continually and inject himself with insulin every day.
Diabetes and your feet
Children with type 1 diabetes will eventually suffer from foot issues. The most common are
- neuropathy – lack of feeling due to nerve damage
- circulation problems – blood vessels can become damaged and restrict proper blood flow
- Until there is a cure, diabetics need to be vigilant about caring for their feet. Don’t hesitate to contact the expert podiatrists at Montgomery Foot Care Specialists with your questions about diabetic foot care. Make an appointment online with Dr. Chanda L. Day-Houts or Dr. Heidi M. Christie or give us a call at (334) 396-3668 at our office in Montgomery, Alabama.
- A diabetic child’s doctor should always check his feet for signs of danger and educate him about the kinds of things to look out for as he grows. With proper care, a diabetic child can live a perfectly normal life – or an extraordinary one, like Noah Barnes.