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Kitty Carruthers

U.S. Olympic medalist and National Figure Skating Champion Kitty Carruthers does not allow diabetes to get in the way of her active daily life. She's determined to successfully remain healthy with the same tenaciousness used to succeed as an Olympic Silver medalist (1984), World Bronze medalist (1982) and a four-time (1981-1984) United States National champion.

“Figure skating is about life lessons," she said. “It teaches you to get up after you've fallen.” Kitty insists on living a healthy lifestyle. “I’m lucky, because I love good food,” she joked. 

While motivated to stay healthy in order to enjoy her family and continue as an athlete. She does acknowledges that her type 2 diabetes is a chronic disease. “There are days when I watch other people eating doughnuts and cake," she said. "Life is unfair and sometimes I have a little pity party.”

Kitty takes her health very seriously and believes that eating well and exercising regularly is the only option for her. As an elite athlete, Carruthers has first-hand experience with the self-discipline required for athletic achievement.

She progressed from gestational diabetes to a more severe form that had to be managed with insulin. For 10 years she was under the care of doctors in Houston, but was not satisfied. Kitty’s long time physician and beloved family friend, was one of UMass Chan Medical School's most celebrated faculty and physicians, Dr. Arthur Pappas. He recommended that Kitty move her diabetes care to the UMass Diabetes Center of Excellence.

Dr. David Harlan has been seeing her for many years and together they have kept her blood sugars within a healthy target range. "Dr. Harlan is the first physician who truly cared about me as a person!" she exclaimed. "He changed my life."    

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