Sam was diagnosed with Diabetic Retinopathy and Neuropathy six years ago, and she now has a guide dog, but she struggles to find accessible nutritional information, which continues to put her health at risk and affects her sight.
“Not being able to access the nutritional information I need as a Type 1 diabetic can be very serious. I rely on knowing the number of grams of carbohydrates, to be able to adjust and administer my insulin depending on the food I’m eating. It can be very damaging to get this wrong.
“If I give myself too little insulin, I will have hyperglycaemia (high blood sugar). But if I inject too much insulin, I will have a hypo (low blood glucose), which can lead to weakness, trembling, slurred speech, confusion, and if severe, can cause seizures, unconsciousness and death.”
Accessing vital nutritional information
“I rely a lot on websites to find out nutritional information, as food packaging isn’t at all accessible… but have found this information is often inaccurate, to the extent that I’ve had an episode of severe low blood sugar due to incorrect information on the site.
“If I’m out and about trying to find something to eat, I will sometimes ask staff to find the information I need. I have to put my faith in them to find the correct information as I’m not able to check the information they’re giving me is correct. I feel like my independence has been affected dramatically.”
What accessible packaging would mean
“A world of entirely accessible packaging would mean the freedom to choose what I want to eat and when I want to eat it. Being in control of my glucose levels without having to rely on others to help me read basic information will give me back another part of my independence.”