Poison rocker BRET MICHAELS sees having diabetes as a blessing - because it inspires him to keep pushing himself.

The singer was diagnosed with the disease when he was six and admits he has to check his blood sugar eight times a day.

He says, "There have been moments when partying became too much and I wasn't balancing it right.

"The diabetes forces me to get up the next day because I don't have a choice and I want to be around as long as possible."

Michaels, a health fanatic, never gets questioned in the gym when he has to inject insulin during a work-out - because that's what people expect from a rocker.

He explains, "If you're in a gym and you're a rock star you're either a junkie or you're on steroids and no one really cares."

11/06/2003 09:09