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Southend woman takes on walking challenge along seafront for World Diabetes Day 

A care worker is marking a year of living with type 1 diabetes with a sponsored 10k walk to support Diabetes UK’s work and raise awareness of the condition.

Lauren Paine, 32, (pictured) was diagnosed with type 1 in October last year and says it has been really tough as she has slowly learned how to manage the condition.

Lauren said: “It is very stressful at times, I have to pre-plan all my meals by counting carbohydrates accurately and injecting the right amount of insulin. I do have a mild learning delay which can make counting carbs difficult at times.

“I feel like diabetes is an invisible condition, it’s not talked about or understood enough and I want to do my bit to help. 

“The diagnosis came as a bit of a shock, I was going to the toilet a lot and had blurry vision. But I am lucky as I have an amazing family and group of friends who help me. Everyone living with diabetes should have a voice and feel heard.”

Many people are not diagnosed early enough with type 1 diabetes. This can lead to them becoming seriously ill and can be life-threatening if not treated quickly. There are four key symptoms everyone should be aware of:

  • being tired
  • being really thirsty
  • being thinner than usual
  • going to the toilet a lot.

If you have any of these symptoms you should see a healthcare professional.

Teresa Strange, East of England Regional Fundraiser at Diabetes UK, said: “We want to thank Lauren for taking on this challenge. And it is really fitting to hold this fundraising event on World Diabetes Day 2021. 

“Over the last 18 months we have seen demand for our services reach record levels, while our own funding has been significantly impacted. This challenge continues and, more so than ever, people with diabetes need us, but we need your support to be able to continue fighting their corner. 

“Without the help of generous supporters like Lauren, we simply would not be able to offer support to the thousands of people with diabetes contacting our helpline, to campaign to keep people with diabetes safe in the workplace, or to invest in vital research – taking us a step closer to our vision of a world where diabetes can do no harm.” 

For more details of Lauren’s story, including how to sponsor her, visit Lauren Paine is fundraising for Diabetes UK (justgiving.com)

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