Quinn Nystrom's portrait

Quinn Nystrom

Speaker, Writer, and Diabetes Advocate
Baxter, MN

About Quinn Nystrom

Courage. Charisma. Character.

Some people find their calling late in life. Quinn found hers at the age of 10, when her 5-year-old brother, Will, was hospitalized with type 1 diabetes. Three years later she was diagnosed with diabetes and re-doubled her efforts. At 16, Quinn was chosen as the National Youth Advocate for the American Diabetes Association (ADA) and spent a year traveling across the country to camps, conferences, corporations, Congress and even the White House.

Quinn devotes her full-time efforts to speaking around the country about diabetes and working diligently as a diabetes advocate. Quinn was the youngest recipient of the prestigious American Diabetes Association Star Award in recognition of her work on behalf of diabetes and would later be asked to serve on the Community Leadership Board for the ADA.

Quinn’s been honored to throw out the first pitch at the Minnesota Twin’s Game as well as being featured nationally on XM Radio, Glamour Magazine, MSN, Diabetes Forecast, The Pioneer Press, The Fox Morning Buzz, Twin Cities Live and The Learning Channel (TLC). This past fall she was one of the youngest individuals elected to the City Council in the state of Minnesota. 

Quinn first book was published in 2014 and is a first-hand account of negotiating life with a chronic illness titled, If I Kiss You, Will I Get Diabetes? To learn more about Quinn and her upcoming public appearances, check out her website:



Articles Written by Quinn Nystrom

Nick Jonas on Flying the Diabetes Flag High!

An exclusive interview with multiplatinum singer, songwriter, actor, and type 1
Singer, songwriter, actor Nick Jonas, 23, was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes 10 years ago. See his interview with OnTrack Diabetes.

Recent blog posts from Quinn Nystrom

Steel Magnolias: Why I Hate This Movie

I have a dear friend from college whose favorite movie is the 1989 classic Steel Magnolias.

Country Star Ben Rue Raises T1D Awareness with the #Buck Off Diabetes Campaign

Ben Rue is a country singer/songwriter who grew up in a rural town outside of Portland. His life took a dramatic turn when he was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of 14.

Call to Congress 2018: Why It's Important to Be a Diabetes Advocate

I never could’ve imagined when I was 16 years old that I would fall in love with advocating for issues I care about in Washington, D.C.

Why I Choose to Celebrate My Diabetes on St. Patrick's Day

Dia-versary: The celebration of the date a person was diagnosed with diabetes.

Holiday Gift Guide for People with Type 1 Diabetes

I love paging through the various holiday gift guides that I get every year in magazines. I’m of course partial to any items that can assist me in living my best life with diabetes.

OmniPod Versus Animas: Why I Chose to Switch and What You Need to Know

About 15 years ago I became a fan of the insulin pump.

6 Reasons Why T1D Moms Rock

I saw a t-shirt recently that said, “Type 1 diabetes doesn’t come with a manual, it comes with a Mom who never gives up.” Having being diagnosed with type 1 di

Quinn's Tribute to T1D Moms: The Ever-Vigilant Guardians of Blood Sugar

I was 13 years old and in the 7th grade when I received my first official athletic accolade.

From the Bottom of the World: Quinn's Mom On Traveling With Two Type 1 Kids

A few months ago my family took advantage of an incredible opportunity—a once-in-a-lifetime chance to travel to the southern most city in the world,

Quinn's Bittersweet Valentine: An Exclusive Interview With Country Music Star Eric Paslay

Fellow type 1's Quinn Nystrom and rising country music star Eric Paslay discuss the joys and challenges of living with diabetes.

How I Survived Summer Camp and Fanny Packs

Summer camp was one of the most cherished annual events of my childhood.

'Why Are You Overweight, Quinn?'

It was like it happened yesterday. I had been hired for the University of Minnesota’s weekly speaker’s series this past fall.

Nick Jonas: Will You Be My Valentine?

Be still my heart. Another Valentine’s Day is here and I’m without a Valentine this year.

How 2015 Was a Failure for Me

This is the time of year when people put together their New Year's resolutions and are so committed in the first few weeks of January to seeing them out. Me?

Quinn’s 7 Favorite Diabetes Things

Blogger Quinn Nystrom shares her list of favorite diabetes things.

How to Travel the World with a Broken Down Pancreas

When I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes my parents made it clear to me that the only thing that would limit my life would be me.

6 Things You Should Never Say to Someone with Diabetes

After living with type 1 diabetes for nearly 17 years there are still comments that take me by surprise, and not usually in a good way.

My Quest for Finding Dr. Right

Yes, you heard me right…picking the right medical professional is similar to my quest to find the perfect boyfriend.

FORCED to exercise!

First it was the constant concern of the FOOD POLICE being after me as a person with diabetes..and now I feel this pressure from the diabetes community that I need to exercise everyday or I’m a “ba

Diabetics against Joan Rivers (or at least me)! Get educated.

Imagine my surprise when I'm doing my everyday skim of online newspapers and I run into this caption: 

There is no "perfect" diabetic...

I believe there is a terrible myth floating out in the diabetes community that is fueled by caretakers and healthcare professionals (usually with positive intentions)....this idea of being a "perfe

Thirteen and Alone With Diabetes...

 I've been off the blogging grid for awhile and I'm sorry about that. I pledge to be better this year... 

Baby it's COLD outside...

I was born and raised in northern Minnesota and if it's up to me, I hope to live here the rest of my life, God willing.


Today my little (ok I guess he is now 6'4!) brother is celebrating his 17th Diabetes Anniversary. You may wonder why my family chooses the word celebrate?

World Diabetes Day

Today, on November 14t

Yes, I have diabetes & I can EAT a COOKIE

I was at a meeting last month with well educated people who were 20 years my senior. We were seated in a fancy meeting room with white linen tablecloths on all of the surrounding tables.

Diabetes - The Invisible Disease

This blog post is a bit belated because I was actually in the emergency room this week because of diabetes related issues. :( 

Dateline Diabetes - Place of Origin

I grew up figure skating on a small lake behind my house. I worked as a teenager selling “I talked to Paul Bunyan” t-shirts in my hometown of Brainerd, MN. And yes, Fargo the movie is also based off this town.
More from Quinn's blog "Dateline Diabetes Dish"

Financial Disclosures for Quinn Nystrom

OnTrack Diabetes, a Vertical Health, LLC website, is committed to ensuring that the medical information it presents is accurate, balanced, objective, and trustworthy.

To help achieve this goal, OnTrack Diabetes requires all authors, editors, and reviewers to disclose any financial relationships or affiliations they have with companies whose products or services may be mentioned in the content they author, edit, or review.

The intent of this policy is to identify any perceived, potential, or real conflicts of interest so that readers can make their own judgments about the value of information being presented.

Author's Statement

I, the undersigned, declare that neither I nor members of my immediate family have a financial interests or affiliation with commercial companies whose products and / or services may be mentioned in the materials I have authored, edited or reviewed for presentation on Vertical Health, LLC’s websites.
There are no disclosures for this author