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Aim High: Sébastien Sasseville Rides Across Canada For Diabetes

For people living with diabetes, monitoring and adjusting insulin levels can be a rigorous challenge. For some, this challenge is simply another mountain to climb; a winding lane in the larger race of life.

This summer, Dexcom was proud to support endurance athlete Sébastien Sasseville as he attempted to beat the trans-Canada solo men’s cycling record and cycle across Canada in 14 days. Sébastien began his journey during the worst-recorded heatwave in British Columbia’s history and encountered several other weather-related challenges along the way. Though he didn’t break the record, Sasseville biked from Vancouver to Halifax in 15 days, 17 hours, and 36 minutes, averaging an impressive 450 kilometres per day.

Sébastien was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes (T1D) in 2002 but vowed to never let his diagnosis limit him. He dedicated his cross-country ride to support Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) Canada’s #AccessforAll Campaign, which aims to make diabetes technology products more affordable and accessible for Canadians with T1D.

Staying Strong With Dexcom

Effectively managing diabetes requires consistent monitoring of glucose levels. For endurance athletes like Sébastien, who spend more time in insulin-sensitive states, accurate glucose monitoring is essential.

Sébastien uses the t:slim X2 insulin pump with Control-IQ technology, an advanced hybrid closed-loop system integrated with the Dexcom G6 Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) System.* The advanced technology uses readings and trends from the Dexcom G6 CGM System to automatically adjust insulin delivery. This means Sasseville can continue his ride without stopping to check and manage his insulin levels, helping him reach important milestones sooner.

“I think we can all do more than we think we can do and set big goals for ourselves. But the story doesn’t end there. I can bring the mindset, but as someone living with type 1 diabetes, I’m supported every minute by my medical devices,” says Sasseville. “There is technology that exists today that helps lessen the burden of diabetes management with a level of automation so that people like me can get better control with less effort.”

Helping Canadians Access Life-Changing Technology

Currently, one in three Canadians has diabetes1 and more than 300,000 children and adults are living with type 1 diabetes.2 While many provinces in Canada now offer public coverage of CGM technology, there is still more work to be done to make this life-changing technology available to more Canadians.

Sébastien’s journey is a powerful example that people living with diabetes can accomplish amazing things. Innovative technologies such as the Tandem t:slim X2 insulin pump and Dexcom G6 CGM System can make these feats easier.

“These tools that I use today were the things I was dreaming about when I was first diagnosed. A closed-loop hybrid was like something out of a sci-fi movie 20 years ago, I couldn’t even imagine it — and now it’s here today, and I use it. And I want to help JDRF with their advocacy work to ensure that everyone with T1D who could benefit from this technology can have access to them.”

You can read more about Sasseville’s journey on his blog.

We are proud to support athletes like Sébastien and their efforts to help improve access to diabetes care in Canada. You can support JDRF’s Access For All campaign by sending a letter to your provincial or territorial representative at: www.jdrf.ca/accessforall.

For more information about public coverage for the Dexcom G6 CGM System, visit our website.

* Dexcom G6 CGM System sold separately.

1 Powderley, Kathleen. “One in Three Canadians Is Living with Diabetes or Prediabetes, Yet Knowledge of Risk and Complications of Disease Remains Low.” Diabetes Canada, April 8, 2019. https://www.diabetes.ca/media-room/press-releases/one-in-three-canadians-is-living-with-diabetes-or-prediabetes,-yet-knowledge-of-risk-and-complicatio.

2 Kemp, Karen. “Live a Day with Type 1 Diabetes.” DiabetesCanadaWebsite. Diabetes Canada, November 20, 2017. https://www.diabetes.ca/managing-my-diabetes/stories/live-a-day-with-type-1-diabetes.

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