Type 1 Diabetes: Causes and Symptoms

Type 1 diabetes is caused by an autoimmune reaction in which the body’s immune system attacks the insulin-producing beta cells of the pancreas. For the most part, the cause is unknown, but the general consensus points to a genetic predisposition triggered by an external catalyst, such as an infection. While there is evidence for people with Type 2 diabetes to achieve remission of their condition, people with Type 1 diabetes require insulin injections for the entirety of their
lives. Type 1 diabetes is the main cause of childhood diabetes. Unfortunately,
Type 1 diabetes frequently goes undiagnosed until the person is hospitalized for complications, most commonly for diabetic ketoacidosis. This is a condition in which the body does not have enough glucose in the blood, so it starts to burn fat directly to make energy, causing harmful substances known as ketones to build up in the body.1


• Excessive thirst
• Frequent urination • Fatigue
• Constant hunger
• Blurred vision
• Bedwetting
• Sudden weight loss

SOURCE: International Diabetes Federation. IDF Diabetes Atlas. Published

2019. Accessed Dec 17, 2019.


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