Diabetes doesn’t just affect you physically, it can affect you emotionally too. With so much to think about, you may sometimes feel overwhelmed. But our stories show whatever you're feeling you're not alone — and what may help. 

Paul sits in a light blue jacket on a sofa looking to his left


Impact on life

Then you lose your money as well - I'm a self-employed bookkeeper. I've been employed before in various accountancy firms but with my illness, with my surgery, I've had to give up work at the moment which is really tough. 

And then there's the day-to-day stresses. For the past 40 years I have been a very loyal supporter of Plymouth Argyle Football Club, going to all the home matches and quite a few of the away matches.

But since the surgery I haven't been able to go and I'm missing it big style, and with that lack of of social contact and immobility because I feel homebound, it really has affected my mental health.

It's the simplest little things that can be taken away from you or the simple things that you can miss when you're housebound. I really miss just walking down past the river and listening to birdsong, or walking down to town and going to have a coffee somewhere. The impact of diabetes, it touches so much of that.

Read Paul's complete story
Man smiling at camera

Tim Hill

What I’ve achieved

Thanks to the programme I’ve lost two and a half stone, lowered my blood pressure and I’ve now been told I’m on my way to remission. I can’t believe I’m on track to put my type 2 diabetes into remission and feel so proud of myself. My self-esteem and mental wellbeing have also improved, and I’ve got so much more energy.   

For anyone out there who is struggling with a type 2 diagnosis, I’d encourage them to find out more about type 2 diabetes remission and the benefits this can have for your health. For me, finding out about type 2 diabetes remission has been truly lifechanging. 

“We’re so pleased that the NHS England Type 2 Diabetes Path to Remission programme exists and Tim’s story shows that losing weight can bring about many benefits. I’d encourage people living with the condition to speak to their GP about the programme.

We recognise that people have been asking for more help and support to understand type 2 diabetes remission and how to achieve it. In response we’ve launched type 2 remission area on our website, where people can find a range of advice and guidance. We also have our local support groups that are a great place to meet other people who can share their experience of managing type 2.” 

- Phaedra Perry, Head of Diabetes UK – south west and south central

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Snita Sharma



You have to be motivated and I had to find the right way for myself. I think clinicians are great at the job they do, but they were unable to give me all the information I personally wanted. I felt I needed to do my own research into nutrition, to give me confidence and find a way forward that's right for me. If that means experimenting and trying different things, then so be it, and if it doesn’t work then I’ll try something else.  
At the moment I’m just so happy that this is working for me. In about three months I’ll go for a blood test and see my doctor to check if I’m in remission. I’ll take it from there and continue with my reviews, such as my annual diabetes review and retinal eye screening, which are still so important.   
I don’t think you need to do extreme exercise; I’ve just started back with walking our dogs with my husband, I go to the gym and enjoy aqua aerobics and light yoga, which both protect my ankle. I find that’s enough for now. 

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Lucy holds 7 medals up. She is smiling and wearing her Diabetes UK Vest.

Inspired by my brother

My brother was diagnosed with diabetes when he was in his late 20s and at times he struggled to manage his condition. Sadly, our family suffered a devastating loss, when he was just 38 years old, he died of Diabetic Ketoacidosis.


James was a very lively and funny character. In his secondary school years, he was a talented all-round sportsman. He captained both Repton and Northern Independent schools at football and won his school colours for hockey, fives and cricket. His football career was cut short by a knee injury, so he later took up golf.

He enjoyed travelling and he visited Barbados, Los Angeles, Australia for the Ashes and many more places. Perhaps his biggest adventure was a road trip where he drove 3000 miles, all over Europe, in 11 days! James loved music and he had his own Sunday afternoon show of Jazz and Blues. A lover of general knowledge quiz shows, James also captained a team for the BBC show "Eggheads".  

James had a real sense of adventure, whether it was scuba diving, hot air ballooning, camel riding or taking his beloved terrier for a walk on the beach in Norfolk. James was up for it all.


It was a huge shock for him, especially for a sporty person who had been so fit and well. At the time of diagnosis, he had been struggling with his health for a couple of years. When he was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, even though he finally had the answer, this was the start of a difficult period of self-management and adjustment for him. In particular he struggled to maintain his blood sugar levels.

James used Diabetes UK for dietary support and information to understand his condition. He would always verbalise to friends and family that team Diabetes UK were the people he could ask questions and receive reliable information. He had faith that pioneering research from team DUK would make this condition easier for him to manage in the future.

Daredevil James once jumped out of a plane to fundraise for Diabetes UK, so running and fundraising in his memory seemed like a good way to place my grief.

What would he think?

He would probably think that I have gone crazy. Because of his competitive background in sport, he would possibly be interested in my marathon times and he would likely be encouraging me to push myself harder.

It is my wish that one day nobody will lose a loved one to this disease. For as long as my legs will carry me, I will always run and fundraise in his memory.

James was a fantastic son, brother and uncle, with an infectious energy. He was incredibly adventurous, funny and full of life. Not a day goes by where we don’t think of him and wonder what life would be like today if he was here. We love him, we miss him. I’ll keep on running.

Lucy has a JustGiving page at

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In this image, SALLY is pictured posing towards camera. The picture is framed from head to just below their shoulders. They are a drag artist, with bright blonde hair down to their shoulders. They are wearing pale blue crinkled gloves up to their biceps, with a matching head piece. They are also wearing a jewel necklace, with 6 rows of different jewels. They have hoop gold earrings that read 'babygirl' inside.


Growing up with diabetes

SALLY says that often the support needed for young people living with type 1 isn’t available, and the jump from the support you receive as a child to managing diabetes as an adult can be overwhelming.

They said “I was coming to terms with a lifelong diagnosis and didn’t want to be living with diabetes- I just didn’t want to engage with it at all. It was difficult to be given so much responsibility.

“Looking back, I think I had found it hard to come to terms with having diabetes ever since I was diagnosed. I had amazing support from my mum and dad- my dad was also diagnosed with type 1 in his 50’s, but there was so much to take on board, it felt overwhelming. There were lots of similar feelings when I was 18 and told my family and friends, I was gay.

“Telling people I had diabetes, felt a lot like coming out. I just felt like I had this secret, that I was embarrassed to tell people about. I don’t think we talk enough about the stigma and embarrassment that you can experience when you’re living with diabetes.’

SALLY adds: “I just ignored diabetes for quite a long time, it’s difficult because I know now after experiencing some complications, the impact of not managing my diabetes but at the time, it was too much of a struggle. Help and support for young people coming to terms with type 1 is so important.”

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