Sam Fuld is an american professional baseball outfielder for the Oakland Athletics. He has been diagnosed with Type-1 diabetes at the age of 10. Despite that he still remains fit for his team and has achieved a lot professionally.
"There are a lot of ways it challenges you. I've always looked at it as a challenge to do whatever I would do otherwise if I didn't have it. Getting to where I am as a baseball player is extra rewarding given what I have to go through. It's changed over the years. I think there used to be more of a negative stigma attached to it or this idea that you can't do things like sports. If you're on top of it, you certainly can, but it just requires a lot of work."
Oakland holds Root Beer Float Day every year for raising awareness about juvenile diabetes. As a part of this year's celebration, Fuld served his own sugar-free version of root beer for people who need to control their blood sugar levels.
Even after two decades of learning to manage diabetes, the 33-year old athlete is still finding new obstacles in dealing with it.
"It's ongoing, it's not just before meals, it's before everything," Fuld said. "You have to be aware of everything you eat, the amount of insulin you need and other variables like exercise and stress. I've been doing it for 23 years now and still every day is new and challenging. I try to eat things that I have a good idea of the carb content and the fat content. It does involve a lot of guessing at times."
Fuld said. "There are so many different variables that go into it. Yeah, I certainly have a better grasp of it now than I did when I was first diagnosed. So many things change on a day-to-day basis. You're used to the constant mental stress that it involves. The blood, the finger pokes and the insulin shots are the easy part. It's the mental battle that's most grinding."
Flud manager Bob Melvin knows all about him and he reminds him a day before the game to keep his blood sugar high enough. "He does a great job with it, too. He's been a great resource for any athlete who's dealing with juvenile diabetes. It's remarkable, really, for a professional athlete to be able to deal with it. You have to be tough-minded because it's a difficult thing. It's pretty amazing to be able to do what Sam Fuld does." said Melvin.