Alexander Zverev revealed that doctors and specialist medical professionals once told him that he couldn't continue as a tennis player because he had diabetes.
The German was diagnosed with the disease when he was just three years old and can regularly be seen checking his blood sugar level during matches. Despite being affected by the chronic disease, the 25-year-old has shown his determination to perform well at the highest level.
On behalf of the Alexander Zverev Foundation's introduction to the Instagram platform, the 2021 ATP Finals champion divulged how he remained focused on his dream despite doctors asking him to stop playing.
"I was always told that I would never make it with diabetes. Different doctors, different specialists said 'competitive athlete with diabetes? That's impossible.' And then at some point I thought to myself, I'm second in the world, I am Olympic champion, I can help others with this issue! I can encourage others. I can be the messenger for the topic diabetes," he expressed.
Zverev stated that he wanted to show everyone that it is possible to live a normal life despite having diabetes.
"I thought, I feel good now, I am 25 years old and I want to help other children and especially other parents. I want to show that everything is possible with diabetes. That's why I made it public," he asserted.
Launched in August, Alexander Zverev's foundation aims to help children suffering from diabetes
Alexander Zverev's long-term goal is to help children suffering from diabetes and with that in mind, he launched the Alexander Zverev Foundation on August 6, 2022. The 25-year-old was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes, a type that shows up early in life due to genetic conditions.
The Tokyo Olympics champion shared the news of the foundation's launch via a social media post four months ago. He stated that his foundation will aim to help children suffering from Type 1 diabetes and also help prevent Type 2 diabetes in people.
"The 6th of August 2022 is a very special day for my family and I. Today, the Alexander Zverev Foundation has officially come to life, supporting children with type 1 diabetes and helping people prevent type 2 diabetes by living a healthy and active life," he said.
With his actions, Zverev hopes to motivate children to never give up on their dreams despite being diabetic.
"I want to encourage children with diabetes to never give up on their dreams no matter what others might say to you," he added.
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