Kasta is coming up on the 10th anniversary of his diagnosis with type 1 diabetes. He is a junior in high school and is successful as a student and an athlete. He surfs, scuba dives, snowboards, plays varsity football and varsity lacrosse, and participates in crossfit. Last year he was selected to the Under Armor 2017 Un-Committed Lacrosse Team. Kasta is his class treasurer at Penncrest High school and a member of three National Honor societies. As successful as Kasta is today, his diabetes has not always been easy to manage.
Because Kasta is an athlete, there have been times that his blood sugars have been dangerously low at night. To keep his blood sugar in check, he started using an insulin pump and his continuous glucose monitor. With these tools, he became confident with his blood sugar control. But he found that many adults weren’t as confident that Kasta has his diabetes in check.
When his coaches didn’t want to put him in the game “because it could hurt him,” Kasta took it upon himself to talk about his diabetes openly with his coaches and classmates, often testing at half-time while surrounded by teammates. He educated them about low blood sugars and how to combat them. Kasta had to prove to his coaches and his teachers that diabetes does not prevent him from being active.
Kasta’s most recent challenge was that he wanted to scuba dive. After being turned away by a resort scuba program, Kasta found a scuba diving center that encouraged him to learn how to dive with type I diabetes and even taught him how to use a glucose gel packet underwater. He earned his open water certification on a dive in Jamaica. Now he’s ready to tackle skydiving!
A diabetes diagnosis hasn’t kept Kasta from being active and achieving his academic goals and looks forward to graduating from high school in the top of his class while being a multi-letter varsity athlete.