The first all-diabetes professional cycling team, Team Novo Nordisk, competes on British roads for the first time this weekend in the Friends Life Tour of Britain.
The team is racing at the highest level of cycling to inspire, educate and empower the 3.2 million people affected by diabetes in the UK.
Team Novo Nordisk is a global sports team with more than 100 cyclists, triathletes and runners who live with diabetes, spearheaded by the professional cycling team.
This unique team of cyclists all have type 1 diabetes, and manage their condition while training and competing in one of the toughest endurance sports.
Phil Southerland, co-founder and CEO of Team Novo Nordisk said: “When diagnosed with diabetes, many people think it means they won’t be able to live life the way they’d hoped.
Team Novo Nordisk is racing to inspire people with diabetes to set and achieve their goals, whatever they may be, and show that the first step towards this is good diabetes control.”
As part of the current diabetes epidemic, the UK has also seen an increase in avoidable diabetes complications.
Regular physical activity has been shown to have both short and long-term health benefits for people with diabetes, including improved blood glucose control, reduced body-fat, and reduced risk of cardiovascular complications.
Dr Rafael Castol, Team Novo Nordisk medical director said: “Good control can be achieved through diet and exercise, in combination with medication in many cases.
“Stepping up levels of exercise doesn’t have to be off limits for people with diabetes, provided it is discussed and planned with the individual’s healthcare team.”
Rachel Cummings, head of external relations and policy, Novo Nordisk UK and Ireland, added: “Novo Nordisk is proud to support Team Novo Nordisk as they race across the UK to raise awareness of diabetes, and encourage those who have diabetes that it should not prevent them from reaching their goals.
“This initiative is part of the Novo Nordisk Changing Diabetes campaign that aims to bring attention to the need for earlier detection and better management of diabetes so that people can live full lives without suffering complications that can result from poor management.”
Racing through nine stages across the country, over eight days, the Friends Life Tour of Britain will reach hemel Hempstead on Friday afternoon.
Mick Bennett, race director, said: “I think it’s fantastic that we have Team Novo Nordisk taking part in the Friends Life Tour of Britain this year.
“A team surrounded by such a great story and cause we hope that people will get behind them on their debut with the race. We wish them every success.”