Monday, February 23, 2009

 My dear friend Sarah asked me to talk about what IS the difference between Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes....

Type 1: (Insulin dependent)
A person's pancreas produces little or no insulin. Although the causes ate not entirely known, scientists believe the body's own defense system (the immune system) attacks and destroys the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. People with type 1 must inject insulin several times every day.

Type 2:
Typically develops after the age of 40, but can appear earlier, and has more recently begun to appear in children. In this form of diabetes the pancreas still produces insulin, but the body does not produce enough or is not able to use it effectively. Treatment includes diet control, exercise, and in some cases, oral drugs or insulin.

I think it just gets me when people ask me if he is diabetic because he is "not active enough" or eats badly. There was nothing he could have done to prevent his diabetes. He was an active, healthy eating little 4 year old!

Here is a couple myths:

Myth #1. Insulin cures diabetes.
Fact: Insulin keeps him alive, it does not cure the disease.

Myth #2. His diabetes is caused by eating too much sugar or by being fat.
Fact: Obesity has been identified as one of the "triggers" for type 2 diabetes but has NO relation to the cause of type 1. While scientists do not yet know the exact cause or causes of type 1 they believe that both genetic and environmental factors are involved. Eating too much sugar is not, and has never been, a factor.

Myth #3. People with diabetes should never eat sweets.
Fact: Sometimes sweets are a must for Type 1 diabetes especially if their blood sugar levels drop too low!

Myth #4. You can "outgrow" Type 1 diabetes
Fact: Type 1 diabetes is a life long disease.

Myth #5. If you do everything "right" you will have tight control over your blood sugar levels.
Fact: Even monitoring his blood sugar levels, eating correctly, counting every carb that he eats, maintaining correct insulin dosages, he still has highs and lows. Stress, hormone changes, growth, illness can all cause blood sugars to swing out of control.

I hope this better explains!


  1. Welcome to Blogland, Jenn. You're an AWESOME Mom! (((HUGS)))

  2. This is AWESOME Jenn -- Thanks for sharing this -- you are such an incredible Mom! Love you :)