March is National Nutrition Month, an annual event created by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. During the month of March, everyone is invited to learn about making informed food choices and developing healthful eating and physical activity habits.
To celebrate National Nutrition Month, we are highlighting one of our young donors. Meet Maria, she is a blood donor, a high school student, a student-athlete, and she has Type 1 diabetes. But she isn’t letting that slow her down, Maria runs an Instagram page called @typeonewithoutlimits to teach others how to thrive with diabetes.
Why do you donate blood?
Donating blood or platelets is something my parents have always done since I was little. I feel like I am doing my part by donating blood for others, it just takes a couple of minutes and you could be saving someone’s life.
What inspired you to get into nutrition and working out?
When I got diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes back in 2017, I started becoming more conscious of what I put in my body, what I eat and what I can do to help my body with Type 1 diabetes. I do what I can to keep my body healthy, to help it absorb insulin better I do weightlifting to keep myself in the weight I’m supposed to be.
What inspired you to share your Type 1 Diabetes journey on Instagram?
I share my life with Type 1 diabetes to help other newly diagnosed people or those who want to learn more. I find that by sharing my experiences I can teach that diabetes puts no limits on what I can or can’t do.
What advice would you give to other diabetics who want to donate blood?
Don’t be afraid, diabetics are able to donate as long as we have our diabetes under control. It is an easy and quick process and you help out others in need.
If you could have a superpower what would it be and why?
I would like to be able to fly all through the world to help those in need, with and without diabetes, and do much more in a more efficient way.
What is your favorite nutritious snack?
I love peanut butter and bananas, this is a great snack for after working out or for when my blood sugar is low to maintain it at the ideal level.
How do you stay active?
I do Olympic weightlifting at school and recently joined a weightlifting club to compete out of school, too. In my free time I like to do the Just Dance game with my mom, it is a fun and a great way to stay active.
Ready to make a difference? Celebrate National Nutrition Month by coming in and donating blood. Donors receive a OneBlood T-shirt and $20 egift card. No appointments are necessary. Walk-ins welcome. Find a location near you and donate today!