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Amelia Lily

Singer Amelia Lily was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes when she was just 3 years old. Having been on the X-factor, Amelia took some time about to talk about her diabetes.

"I was only 3 when I was diagnosed with diabetes and obviously, it was a very difficult time because I was so young.

I didn't really understand what it was and my mum had to pin me down to give me my injections.

"I think a lot of mums who have children with diabetes will appreciate how hard it is to do that to a little girl."

"When I was about eight I learnt how to do my own injections. I was very aware even at that age that I couldn't always depend on my parents. One day I would grow up and move out so I would have to learn to do it myself."

"I remember the first time I did it, standing in the kitchen at home with my mum. She stuck a empty needle in her belly just to reassure me that it was going to be ok.

"I did it, and I was taken out as a treat afterwards. But even then I don't think I really understood the importance of what I was doing."

"I'd be lying if I said it wasn't hard at times and I think anyone with diabetes would agree with me. But it does get easier and it becomes part of your daily routine."

You have to stay on the ball to keep yourself healthy.

"I check my blood sugar levels all the time. I like to know exactly what my levels are before I go on stage. I'm very lucky with the way my life is turning out, but it does mean I need to keep on top of my blood sugar all the time."

"You burn a lot of energy performing on the stage. Singing burns more than a run, so it's important for me to keep my insulin levels up. I always make sure I eat and have food in my tummy before I perform."

I did question myself for years. 'Why me? Why can't I go one day without having to have an injection?' but now I believe it's made me stronger.

"I think it helped me to cope with the whole X-Factor experience. I had to mature at an early age and I had to learn to be strong. It was this strength that helped me cope when I was voted off the show – twice."

"My uncle has diabetes. He was diagnosed when he was 14, but I don't know of anyone else in my family who has it. It came completely out of the blue. I used to drink a lot as a child and I was constantly going to the toilet so my mum took me to the doctors for a check up. That's when I was diagnosed."

"Diabetes UK recently celebrated the 90th anniversary of when the first person with diabetes was successfully treated with insulin. I thank everyone who was involved then, and everyone who has worked so hard to make sure people with diabetes have been in good health since. Without them, I might not have been where I am today."

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