Dear Readers,

With warmth, I welcome you to this special edition of our newsletter, dedicated to a topic that touches the hearts of many: diabetes.

In the light of World Diabetes Day on November 14th, we aim to reflect on the challenges and triumphs of those who live with this condition daily. As the great American poet Maya Angelou once said,

“Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.”

Let us learn together and strive for better understanding and support.

Statistics and Impact

Diabetes is a growing global health issue. Currently, there are over 463 million people living with this condition. These numbers highlight an urgent need for awareness, understanding and support. The daily life of individuals with diabetes involves careful management of nutrition, exercise, medication and regular monitoring of blood sugar levels. This requires not only physical effort but also mental resilience and perseverance.

Frederik Benton and John McCloud: 100 Years of Nobel Prize

In 1923, the Nobel Prize in Medicine was awarded to Frederik Banting and John Macleod for their discovery of insulin. This year, we commemorate the centenary of their groundbreaking work, which transformed the lives of millions. Their dedication and perseverance remind us that even in the most challenging times, the power of the human spirit and science is immeasurable.

A Glimpse into Life with Diabetes

To catch a glimpse of daily life with diabetes, we share the story of Sarah, a courageous soul who has been living with this condition for many years. Her story inspires and demonstrates that with the right support and mindset, people with diabetes can lead a full and fulfilling life.

Sarah’s Story

Sarah’s journey with diabetes began at a young age. She received the diagnosis at the age of ten, which initially brought much confusion and concern. However, Sarah was determined not to let this condition dominate her life. She embraced it as a part of herself and quickly learned the art of balance.

In her teenage years, Sarah took charge of her health. She learned about nutritional values, insulin dosages and the impact of exercise on her blood sugar levels. Her determination and discipline were admirable. She was not afraid to ask questions, seek help and find new ways to cope with her condition.

The road was not always easy.

There were moments of frustration and fatigue, but Sarah did not let it deter her. She found support in her family, friends and the community around her. She shared her experiences with others, hoping to increase understanding and compassion.

Now, years later, Sarah is a shining example of resilience. She has overcome obstacles that many cannot imagine. Her life is rich and full and she is an inspiration to many in her community.

Sarah’s story reminds us that living with diabetes is not only a matter of physical health but also of mental strength and community support. With the right attitude and support, people with diabetes can not only survive but thrive.

Diabetes Association Netherlands

The Diabetes Association Netherlands stands as a beacon of support for those affected by diabetes. Their commitment to education, advocacy and community-building is invaluable. Together, we form a powerful network that helps alleviate the burden of diabetes.

“In each of us, there is strength,

a will, and a drive that can make it clear that there are no limitations on how far we can go.”

– Muhammad Ali.

May these words remind us of the boundless power that resides within each of us. Together, we can create a world where people with diabetes can thrive.

Diabetes and its Impact on Mental Health

Diabetes is not just a physical condition; it may significantly affect the mental health of those living with diabetes.  Continually managing blood sugar levels, medication, and diet can sometimes be overwhelming. People with diabetes may experience feelings of anxiety, stress and even depression as they grapple with the daily challenges that this condition brings.

It is crucial to recognise that caring for mental health is just as important as physical health in diabetes. Professional guidance and support are available and can be invaluable for those facing this challenge.

Diabetes, Mental Health and Additional Approaches

Yoga: A Potential Support for Diabetes and Mental Health

The importance of a holistic approach to managing diabetes and promoting mental well-being cannot be overstated. While yoga can be a valuable addition, it’s important to note that it’s not the sole approach.

Trauma-Sensitive Yoga and Its Role in Diabetes Management

For some, practising yoga can be sensitive, especially if there’s a history of trauma. This is where Trauma-Sensitive Yoga comes into play. This approach is specifically designed to provide a safe and supportive environment for individuals who have experienced trauma.

Trauma-sensitive yoga incorporates gentle yoga movements, breathing exercises and an offering of practising making choices. Trauma Sensitive Yoga, places emphasis on choice and empowerment, allowing the participant to maintain control over their own body and movements. This can be invaluable for individuals with diabetes who have also experienced trauma, as it provides a secure space to reconnect body and mind.

Recognising the diverse needs and approaches in diabetes management is crucial. For some, traditional yoga can be a source of comfort and strength, while others may benefit from the gentleness and empowerment of Trauma-Sensitive Yoga.

Again, it’s always advisable to consult with a qualified professional when choosing the right approach. Together with appropriate medical care, mental health guidance, and support, these approaches can be an integral part of a holistic well-being plan for people with diabetes.

Navigating the Path of Self-Care with Diabetes

Living with diabetes is a journey that requires continuous attention and care. It’s a path marked by daily considerations. Amidst this, self-care becomes both a lifeline and a challenge.

Balancing the demands of everyday life with the meticulous needs of diabetes management can be complex. It’s not just about physical well-being, but also about nurturing your mental and emotional health. It’s about recognising that self-care is not an indulgence, but a necessity.

There are days when it feels like a tightrope walk and that’s okay. It’s okay to feel the weight of it all, to acknowledge that some days will be harder than others. Remember, it’s not about perfection, but progress. Taking time for yourself, finding moments of stillness and allowing space for self-compassion are vital. It’s about listening to your body, understanding its cues and responding with kindness.

You are not defined by your diabetes, but by the strength, resilience and self-care you embody. It’s a journey of learning and growing, of finding what works best for you and of acknowledging that your well-being is worth every effort.

So, as you navigate this path, remember that self-care is not selfish. It’s an act of love, a gift to yourself and a commitment to your own well-being. You are deserving of the care you give.

If you haven’t had the opportunity to book your training for the last quarter of 2023 yet, we have good news for you! There are still a few spots available for our December training.

You are warmly invited to look ahead to the coming year.  Furthermore, we’d like to invite you to visit our sister organisation, beside where you’ll find specific programs tailored for companies, managers, and employees. Here, you can delve deeper into topics such as diversity, equity & inclusion.

We look forward to welcoming you and working together towards a more inclusive and harmonious society.

With care!

Esther and Team Trauma Sensitive Yoga Nederland