By Stephanie Stahl
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Every 20 seconds, someone is diagnosed with diabetes. Thousands of people will come together to raise money and awareness to help fight the disease at the Philadelphia Tour de Cure.
People will be biking to help fight diabetes, a leading cause of heart attacks and other deadly complications.
“We are hoping this year that we will raise $400,000 with our Tour de Cure,” said Julie Heverly, with the American Diabetes Association. She says the money funds research and awareness.
“Prevention is huge. There are 26 million Americans living with diabetes, but there are 79 million Americans that are at risk of developing diabetes and we want to stop that,” said Julie.
The most common form, type 2 diabetes, is usually caused by obesity, but the disease that interferes with insulin and blood sugar regulation can also be inherited.
“It’s absolutely devastating,” said Julie. She was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes when she was 21.
Her life is a lot easier and safer now because of advances like a continuous glucose monitor and insulin pump that help maintain her insulin levels.
For years Julie had been told having a baby would be too dangerous, but she found a doctor in Philadelphia who helped her safely have a healthy baby girl.
“I’m just so grateful. I just look at her every day and she is just, she’s such a miracle in my life. She’s the reality of a lot of dreams come true, especially a diabetes miracle and a diabetes dream come true,” said Julie.
The Tour de Cure for diabetes is Saturday morning at Temple’s Ambler Campus. It’s for everyone, including serious cyclists and families out for a leisurely ride.
For more information on the American Diabetes Association Tour de Cure, visit: main.diabetes.org.