Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is a chronic autoimmune condition in which insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas are mistakenly destroyed by the body’s immune system.
Insulin is the hormone made by the pancreas that allows the body to use sugar (glucose) from carbohydrates in food consumed for energy. To survive, people with T1D must monitor their blood sugar throughout the day and take insulin via multiple daily injections (MDI) or via an insulin pump. Insulin is a treatment for T1D, but there is no cure.
T1D can occur in people of any age, and its causes are not fully known. Genetics plays a role, as the condition tends to run in families, but 85-90% of people who are diagnosed have no family history. What we do know is that diet or lifestyle don’t cause T1D, it isn’t contagious or something you can outgrow, and it’s not currently preventable or curable.