Diabetes is a lifelong condition that causes a person's blood sugar (glucose) level to become too high.
There are two types of diabetes:
- Type 1 (previously known as insulin-dependent, juvenile or childhood-onset) – where the pancreas doesn't produce any insulin (10% of all diabetes, often inherited/genetic)
- Type 2 – where the pancreas doesn't produce enough insulin or the body’s cells don't react to insulin
It's very important to be diagnosed as soon as possible, as it can get progressively worse if left untreated.
Type 1 diabetes can develop at any age (usually before age of 40), particularly in childhood (that's why it's called juvenile).
Causes of type 1 diabetes
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition which arise from an autoimmune disease or virus infection2002 and as a result of the body's pancreas is unable to produce insulin to be converted into energy and without insulin your body will break down its own fat and muscle, resulting in weight loss. In other words glucose can't be moved out of your bloodstream into your cells.
The main cause of type 1 diabetes is unknownWHO. However a number of theories explains that cause may be one of the following:
Balance between regulatory and effector T cells determines disease risk, timing of disease activation, and disease tempo2010.
a diabetogenic trigger (such as virus infection2002),
Evidence is emerging that insulin-producing beta cells are highly susceptible to acute infection by Coxsackie virus if their production of interferon is inhibited, resulting in diabetes. Coxsackie B viruses (CVBs) have been implicated in human diabetes and can induce diabetes in animal models, which provides a strong basis for virus involvementNature
This relationship is currently being studied further.
environmental2007 (such as exposure to an antigen2005).
Other factors possibly playing a role in modifying the development of the disease are vaccinations, psychological stress and climatological factors.
It may partly explain why the disease incidence increased has so much in the last three decades despite markedly improved hygiene and health care standards.2007