A couple of weeks ago I was flipping through the pages of my local newspaper when I ran across an article by The Associated Press titled, “Oldest US diabetic ‘lifer’ reaches age 90.”
It caught my attention.
Back in 1926, a five-year-old boy by the name of Bob Krause was diagnosed with type I diabetes, (aka juvenile diabetes), shortly after the commercial production of insulin. Before that time children died of the nasty disease, including his brother.
As most of you may know, type I diabetes is different from type II diabetes. It’s a chronic illness in which the body no longer produces insulin, and life expectancy is shortened due to serious health complications that can develop as a result. However, Mr. Krause was determined to successfully beat it, and he’s now the oldest American known to live 85 years beyond the time of diagnosis.
I spoke with Mr. Krause over the phone to congratulate him and to discover his success tips, and guess what his number one tip has been? In fact, he calls it his “life’s motto”: he eats to live instead of living to eat! [And he'd never heard of a book with that title!] He always treats his body like a car and only eats enough food to fuel activities, and that’s it. For him, that equates to just two modest meals a day . . . not for pleasure; or emotional, social, or recreational reasons; and his fuel doesn’t consist of processed foods and lots of animal protein either.
Mr. Krause was determined from early on that he wanted to live the best life possible. And he did. He became a professor and established a career in teaching mechanical engineering at the University of Washington; plus, he and his wife raised a wonderful family together.
I was blown away by his positive attitude and wisdom of living with type I diabetes. He genuinely considers himself a blessed man to have had diabetes at such a young age as it caused him to do what he was supposed to do.
Before hanging up the phone, he told me that if all people would live as if they had diabetes, everyone would be a lot healthier. He said it’s each person’s decision to live or die, and that if we each do what we’re supposed to do, we’ll live a long and healthy life.
Congratulations Bob Krause – you are an inspirational hero!
By the way, he can’t understand why so many people have been making such a big fuss over him as he just did what he was supposed to do, to live!
Image credit: flickr by Genista