Snowboarder with type 1 diabetes shares his passion with others who have the illness

Sean Busby was a sponsored professional snowboarder at the age of 16 and was gearing up for a shot at the Olympics when he began to feel unhealthy for the first time, according to a recent article published by ESPN.

Unsure of why he was frequently too weak to practice or compete, Busby told the news provider that he began losing sponsors and his dreams of becoming a world champion started to fade away.

However, the athlete was finally diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. He explained to the news organization that his first insulin injection made him feel healthier and ready to get back on the mountain.

"Back before insulin was discovered, they used to call type 1 diabetes 'wasting disease' because kids would just waste away until they were skeletons, and that's what was happening to me. By the time the doctors figured it out I was down to 119 pounds, wasting away on my parents' couch. I thought I'd never snowboard again," Busby said, quoted by the news source.

He now travels the world snowboarding in locations like Iceland and is able to practice diligent diabetes management with the help of a handheld monitor that detects blood glucose levels and an insulin pump that helps prevent the diabetes medication from freezing in the cold mountains.

ESPN reported that Busby also hosts snowboarding camps through an organization he founded call Riding on Insulin, which he created for kids who have type 1 diabetes.

The American Diabetes Association recommends that individuals store bottles of insulin that are currently in use at room temperature since this may help them avoid pain during injections. Diabetes treatments that are stored in this way typically last about one month. However, the organization states that extra supplies should be kept in the refrigerator.