Type 1 Diabetes
Open as PDF
Return to About Diabetes
Diabetes is more than one disease, although
in each type high blood glucose is found. The types of diabetes
are defined by what has caused the blood glucose to be high.
If blood glucose is high, either there is not enough insulin,
or the insulin is not working effectively.
Insulin is a hormone secreted from the pancreas. Insulin
helps glucose be used by the cells. In type 1 diabetes the
cells in the pancreas that produce insulin have been destroyed.
Most of the time, we don’t know what has destroyed
the cells in the pancreas that make insulin. Genetics plays
a role in deciding whose cells stay healthy and whose pancreatic
cells do not. Environmental factors like viruses might also
play a role.
Normally when you eat, blood glucose rises, and this causes
insulin to be secreted by the pancreas. If the cells in the
pancreas that produce insulin are destroyed, then no insulin
can be made or secreted. The blood glucose stays high.
The body tries to keep all systems in a balance or at a
steady rate, called homeostasis. For most people,
it is the release of insulin that allows the glucose to
enter the body
cells to provide energy needed for cellular activities. Without
insulin, the body cannot control blood glucose levels and
death can result. So, people with type 1 diabetes must take
Remember, this information doesn’t replace any that
your doctor may have given you or spoken to you about. Whenever
you have questions about your diabetes or how it is being
treated, talk to your doctor.
Diabetes | Food & Diabetes
| Medications & Diabetes
| Current Issue | Archive