Ravens rookie Mark Andrews refuses to be defined by diabetes

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The story that gets told again and again about Baltimore Ravens tight end Mark Andrews is his near-death experience three years ago.

As a freshman at Oklahoma, Andrews he was unresponsive due to hypoglycemia, a condition caused by very low blood sugar. His roommate had to shove fruit snacks in his mouth, and paramedics rushed to the scene where he finally regained consciousness.

Andrews, a Type 1 diabetic since childhood, knows more than anyone how it’s a minute-by-minute battle with this disease. He understands how every bite of food he takes affects his body. He realizes the precautions he must take before any form of exercise.nfl nike jerseys cheap china

But Andrews has never been hospitalized for diabetes. He never has had to miss a game or practice because of low blood sugar.

Diabetes has changed Andrews’ life forever. It just hasn’t stopped him from pursuing any of his goals.20

Instead of focusing on a scary incident in his college dorm room, Andrews wants to talk about how he continually sidestepped defenders in the open field and raced to the end zone, becoming the nation’s top tight end in college last season and a third-round pick in this year’s draft by his commitment to control diabetes.

“My thing is living your best dream and don’t let this disease define you,” Andrews said. “It’s definitely a part of who you are, but it shouldn’t be 100 percent who you are. That’s something I live by and I think strongly of.”

Andrews’ aspirations are to become the most complete tight end in the NFL and a role model for fellow diabetics. He’s just beginning his journey in the league, but he already has made great strides in helping children cope with this disease.

Andrews has mentored countless boys and girls on eating right and staying active. Parents contact him through direct messages or track him down on the Internet after reading an article on him (there are 516,000 results when you Google tight end Mark Andrews and diabetes).cheap nfl nike jerseys china

A few years ago, a mother contacted Andrews about her son, who had become depressed after being diagnosed with diabetes. After a talk at the high school with Andrews, the boy got in the car and told his mother “he just changed my life.”