There’s a new diabetes resource website in town!
OK, it's not exactly brand new... Rather, a familiar site now rebranded with a whole new look and reader-friendly style.
Say hello to Diabetes Strong.
What began as The FitBlog in 2015 has just undergone a complete makeover and been re-launched to more accurately reflect its lineup of diabetes content beyond just what the words "Fit" and "Blog" bring to mind. Husband-wife duo Christel and Tobias Oerum, who hail from Denmark and now live in Southern California, founded and run the for-profit site. They say it was time to punch up the site’s profile to showcase how it’s evolved in just a few short years.
Christel's a longtime type 1 diagnosed in 1997, a personal trainer, diabetes advocate, and fitness bikini model champion (!). She started the site to share her story as a nutrition and fitness expert with T1D, delving into her experiences on managing food and exercise with diabetes and insulin in the mix. That grew quickly beyond just her own POV, and now attracts about 100,000 monthly visitors and a team of contributors writing about their own experiences as well as other D-items on fitness, nutrition, tech and treatments along with overall health.
Describing their site as an online diabetes magazine, Christel and Tobias say this re-launch resolves the biggest irony -- that everything on the site relates to diabetes, but the word wasn't used in the title. That may have prevented many people from finding it in Google searches -- especially if those individuals weren't specifically looking for anything related to nutrition or fitness, or even a blog.
Of course, Christel and Tobias know website traffic isn't the sole focus – rather it’s about reaching as many people with diabetes as possible. Just one life impacted is what matters, they point out. And that's the motivation for everything.
"The mission and design of Diabetes Strong is centered around my motto that there is nothing you can’t do with diabetes -- if you have the right knowledge, tools and mindset," Christel says. "If we can reach just one more person and enable them to go out and live healthy and happily, then it's a success."
In redesigning the site, they created better navigation and categories for people to find different types of articles. The couple makes sure that every article has a positive, "how to" approach to diabetes and offers solutions for whatever the topic, be it losing weight with diabetes on board, preventing low blood sugars when exercising, or tips that might come in handy for those starting a jogging-around-the-neighborhood routine.
Christel's healthy meal plans and a library of online recipes and workout videos are also available on the site and they are continually adding new content at least three times a week. They also plan to continue the community challenges they’ve initiated, with three or more planned for the next year; we reported on the first challenge focused on weight management in January.
While they have focused mostly on T1D to date, they hope to expand with more non-insulin T2D specific articles down the road.
Interestingly, Christel and Tobias tell us they didn't even come up with the new name themselves; it was a suggestion from a reader in response to their request for feedback on the rebranding. That phrase – reminiscent of Lance Armstrong’s LiveStrong site -- stuck and became the new name.
"It's about us all growing together, as a community," Christel says. "We can't do this in a silo, and we want to work with everyone."
Not to toss out puns, but we certainly think the new site is "strong"... ;)
It definitely doesn't hurt to mix things up every so often when it comes to living with diabetes -- whether that's tweaking a management routine, trying out a different device or drug, adding some design flair to a case or outfit, or spicing up a diabetes website. So why not go check it out?