Type 1s Vs. Type 2s?

If you’ve read my books or blog entries, you know that I advocate people coming together to fight for health. But it seems some people with diabetes may fight each other instead of allying. A recent article on Diabetes Health, called “What People with Type 1 Diabetes Can Learn from Type 2s,” provoked dozens of mostly angry comments.


“Type 1 is nothing like Type 2,” was the type of comment posted by many people with Type 1. One wrote, ” [Unlike people with Type 2], I cannot take a day off. If I eat everything my dietitian suggests, I must still check my blood glucose four to seven times per day and take numerous injections or bolus my pump. How many Type 2s have been unconscious in the middle of the night due to low blood sugar?”

The source of the anger seems to be society’s prejudice against people with Type 2, the belief that the disease is their fault, that they could cure it with diet and exercise. Some of this nonsense is sloshing from Types 2s onto Type 1s because the public doesn’t know the difference between the two conditions. “Thanks to Type 2s, people who have Type 1 are a getting a ‘bad rap’,” one poster wrote.

Some Type 1 victims of this prejudice resent it. “I wish these two different diseases didn’t go by the same name,” was a typical type of comment.

The sad thing is that many people with Type 1 seem to have bought into the false idea that people with Type 2 are “doing it to themselves.” Their anger is understandable. Living with Type 1 is hard enough, and now everyone thinks you brought it on yourself, and most of the research money and publicity starts going into Type 2. There is also the perception that Type 2s don’t understand how hard it is to live with Type 1, with the dangers of hypos and all the matching of carbohydrate and exercise to insulin dosing.

It’s normal for people with chronic conditions to become hyper-focused on our own problems, making it harder to see other people’s problems. Likewise, it’s normal for poor people to turn against other poor people who can be seen as competing for scarce resources. People forced to relocate by Hurricane Katrina, for example, often faced prejudice in the towns where they moved. See also the opposition to immigration from some working class Americans, who fear the competition for jobs. In a way, perhaps this Type 1/Type 2 divide is similar.

Some people have moved past the divide. One anonymous reader posted, “I’ve had Type 1 for 34 years…I think the idea that Type 2 is ‘curable’ by diet and exercise is mistaken. We don’t know what causes Type 2. There are plenty of obese, sedentary people who never develop Type 2. Those are ‘risk factors,’ not causes. [Type 1 and Type 2] are two different chronic diseases. We can certainly learn from anyone who suffers from a chronic disease.”

Anonymous is right. Everyone with chronic conditions faces similar problems and can benefit from similar skills and attitudes. That’s why I called my first book The Art of Getting Well: Maximizing Health When You Have a Chronic Illness.

Of course, each disease is different and each individual is different. Living with Type 1 is usually more demanding than Type 2. It’s harder than anything most people ever have to face in life. It’s normal, healthy even, to get angry sometimes about the difficulties and challenges. But we shouldn’t turn our anger against other people with illness. We should put that energy into improving our lives and fighting for better environments and health care.

What do you think? Have you experienced this kind of conflict? How do you feel about it? Are different types of diabetes totally different, or do they have a lot in common? Let us know.

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  • Calgarydiabetic

    Yes I left one diabetic web site because of type 1 libertarians being super hostile to type 2. My diabetes is better than your diabetes. It is like arguing: dead, deader, deadest. Many type 1 become insulin resistant and many type 2 need insulin. The onset of type 2 is slower usually than type 1. I think both are inflammatory diseases. And I think classifying diabetes into only 2 types is ridiculous and harmful to many patients.

  • Becky

    As an adult, when I was first diagnosed, I was diagnosed with type 2. However, I did not respond to the usual type 2 treatments but did not test positive for anti-bodies for type 1. Bottom line, I have now been diagnosed with type 1 for lack of a more definitive diagnosis. I guess you might say I have type 1.5, or a mild form of type 1, or an atypical form of type 2, your choice. I take insulin 4 times a day, carefully count my carbs, and exercise regularly. I have never been healthier. Yes, it is inconvenient to have diabetes, but not impossible. I do get frustrated when someone says, “you don’t look like you have diabetes.” I guess I need a tattoo on my forehead or something.

  • Marisha

    I agree completely with this blog. I get frustrated because to me it’s like saying “My cancer is worse than your cancer”. What?? Anyone with cancer will tell you that it’s frightening no matter what – and to me Diabetes is the same way. I am a Type 2 diabetic and will say, honestly, that until a few weeks ago although I knew there was a difference I didn’t really know what the difference was between Type 1 and Type 2. Someone asked me and I didn’t know – so I found out. Now I feel more educated and am also quick to explain the difference when people I know try and put us in the same category. I get frustrated about dealing with Type 2 but I cannot even begin to imagine facing Type 1. I take injections, check my blood sugar constantly throughout the day and although I have been blessed to not experience extremely low blood sugar myself, I do have someone in my life who is hypoglycemic and it quite honestly scares me. I agree that coming together and helping each other educate the world about our differences will ultimately be beneficial for us all!

  • pat

    Wow I do not hate either type. It is hard enough managing this monster (type 2) we did it to ourselves ((NOT)). I think each type is trying and it takes hard work to manage both. Ugliness is a waste of time. Lets just fight this monster with all our might. I am trying to. I started out without meds at least I had a small amount was controlled that way until April of last year and had to start meds. Type 2 here and I am a fighter.

  • still too fat

    Yep, I’ve encountered type 1 sufferers who invoke the mantra that:

    A: Type 2s choose to be diabetic, where they are afflicted with it, and

    B: Type one is a “real” disease where type two is a self-inflicted condition, and

    C: Type 2s are stealing attention and resources that rightfully belong to type 1s.

    I bear them no ill will, they’re just repeating what their doctors say.

    Let me repeat that. Doctors, nurses, and other health care providers are the root source of most of the discord between type ones and type twos. Don’t blame “society” or “the public” for the prejudice against diabetics. Where do you think people got the vitriol from in the first place?

  • Rob Sanders

    Yes, Hello. I am a recently (6 months) diagnosed Type 2. I know every day that I have it so much easier than any Type 1. I do understand that I am lucky that I do not have take medicine. I also know that with only 6 months of dealing compared to many years, my perspective is not realitic. I have done what the Dr. and the Dietician instructed with very good results. I get good numbers on my blood tests, but I also know that I am not and most likey never will be “curred,” but rather controlled. That is the best that I can hope for at this time. That is certainly something that all Type 1 and Type 2 can share.

  • David

    I agree that we have more “in common” (vs people who don’t have diabetes) and infighting will help neither of us! What I do find frustrating (as a type 1 [originally dx type 2 in 2004]) is that so much of the information coming out now is geared towards type 2s (due to the increasing numbers diagnosed with it). I didn’t grow up with diabetes or had it for 20 some years so sometimes I feel kind of “out there” since much of the type 2 advice doesn’t apply to me (e.g. I don’t have to lose weight, have no metabolic syndrome) and (until recently) much of the type 1 advice/support for newly diagnosed relates to children or young adults (I was 42 when diagnosed). Since I am at my correct weight, most people assume I’m type 1 when it comes up in conversation.

  • Larry

    I am a Type 2 and have never given a thought to any tensions between Type 1 and Type 2. I recognize the lifetime struggle Type 1 people have, but I just don’t see the tension expressed here as important to eother group. But when there are books to sell or websites to promote, mole hills become mountains.

    We all need answers and we all need help and understanding.

    Type 2 is a creeping disease and comes on slowly. Because I was fit, strong and ‘healthy’, I managed or endured all my health problems myself and never went to doctors. Then at 45 I had an employment physical and found I was hypertensive and diabetic. By the time it was diagnoised, I already had damage to kidneys, eyes, heart and soon my feet. If I had been a Type 1, it would have been identified and treated before all my organs were affected. I brought it on myself because I never went to the doctor, although I’ve probably been to a hundred of them now and paid them a hundred thousand dollars, so I’ve paid for my poor health practices. Ofthe 6 or so Type 2 diabetics I know personally, only one of them is significantly overweight, but I know a lot of overweight and some obese people who are not diabetic.

    We need answers, but the way the healthcare industry is headed, we’re not liklely to get them anytime soon.

  • dipper33

    it does seem that most of the research and pharma is focused on type 2. i don’t have anger toward type 2’s, just toward the industries bc i feel that we type 1’s get ignored bc type 2 is becoming an epidemic. type 1 is also called “juvenile onset diabetes” bc it does manifest in an individual in his/her youth. there is no way to tell who and who won’t get this. it is not a “lifestyle” disease, it is random. these factors alone should be a reason to make more advances in the research and treatments and cures for type 1. i work in the healthcare industry & probably 90% of articles i read on diabetes are geared toward type 2.

  • Jeff

    Ever since I was diagnosed with Type 2 (which was a really late diagnosis vs most – started on insulin – 60 units twice daily – and drugs on day one), I have run into a general lack of knowledge of the diabetes in the general populous. It is become standard when someone learns that I am diabetic to have to explain the difference between 1 and 2. I truly feel for the Type 1’s, knowing what I am dealing with and how it must be so much harder on them. But I will state that I did once early on try to get involved with a diabetic support community online but ran into the comments by Type 1’s about Type 2’s. I then just left quietly and decided to stay out of the diabetic community in general. I get one mag and a few email subscriptions to try to keep up with the science, but if I am not welcome then there is no reason for me to join the community.

  • Sherrie

    I was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes 3 yrs ago. Within a year’s time, I was on insulin because I had so many lows that pills couldn’t begin to regulate the disease. I can’t get a pump because my C-peptide is 1.9 and my insurance requires 1.5. I check my blood sugars 6 to 8 times a day and take 5 to 6 injections a day.

    I do not appreciate the “type 2” negative profiling & prejudice that goes on in today’s society. Last week, I had no less than 3 people tell me that I could be cured of Type 2 with diet and exercise. One person told me to eat a lot of fruit! Sure. That’s the ticket to success with diabetes.

    I wear an AFO because of neuropathy.

    3 years ago, I was diagnosed with Type 2 and my life has not been easy for a single hour since being diagnosed.

  • Donna

    I just can’t believe there are people that feel that way. What is all this nanabooboo stuff! I have a granddaughter with type 1 ( diagnosed at age 2 ) and I watch her deal with this complicated, unfair disease everyday. Two months after her diagnosis I was told I have type 2. Let me tell you something…we both wear pumps, we both count carbs, we both suffer a high price if we DO NOT DOSE for what we eat. ALSO: WE CAN BOTH GO BLIND, HEART PROBLEMS, KIDNEY FAILURE and yes, death. NOW that being said, Type 1 has a very nasty build up of a thing called KETONES when their sugar gets out of control or when they are ill.. I have seen how dangerous this can be. Type 2 USUALLY do not have this problem….except for when we are sick. AND yes folks, I too have to test for ketones when I am sick. Lets stop bickering and come to terms with reality. Death comes by many names if you don’t take care of yourself and by what ever name it takes….it’s final! Let us all work together and cure ALL diabetes

  • Deborah D George

    I have had Type 1 diabetes for 35 years. Far from a picnic in life. I agree that most research appears geared to Type 2. All diabetes is so grossly misunderstood by the general populus. The point of research is to find a cure, and make life tolerable until one is found. Right now there is no cure. I remember being diagnosed and told a cure would be found in 20 years. I am 15 years past that. Do I think there will be a cure one day? Yes, but not in my lifetime. In the meantime we need to do our part. Help with fund raising, take the best care of our selves, and assist those who fight this disease everyday. The two types differ greatly, but the cure of one can only help the cure to the other. Stay well, eat well, live strong.

  • J.D.

    I really don’t know if I am type 1 or type 2. Noboby ever told me for sure. It developed after my last child was born. I am insulin dependent; and, now I’m insulin resistant which leads me to choose to be type 2. No matter what kind of diabetes you have been given, you spend the rest of your life balancing food intake, exercise, and living a normal life. At the present time, I have control over “IT”; but, diabetes is a sneaky disease/condition. and, I realize that complications can come about no matter how hard you try to avoid them. It’s life…and, it’s my life. I feel blessed because my sister is on the pump; and, my father died of diabetic complications.
    So, does it really matter which diabetes you have?
    Two generations ago we would not have had the medications and insulin to make our lives better; and, research has provided us with those. So, get over it; and, get on with your life. I sure have.

  • molek

    What a silly argument–both diseases, though different, are terrible in their own way. The real problem is not with diabetics, but with those who don’t know much about the disease. I’ve been Type 1 for 22 years and nothing annoys me more than (well-intentioned?) people who, on finding out I’m diabetic, make comments like “but you are so thin!” We need to educate everyone about the differences in the two diseases, but also about the difficulties similar to both.

  • Hedgie

    I write this, not as a diabetic, but a nurse and the spouse of a Type II diabetic. Some of the confusion regarding the two types of diabetes seems to come from those who offer opinions, not checking out the causes of diabetes. Perhaps it is time to put away the opinions and actually read the facts about diabetes. My spouse’s diabetes has resulted not from overweight and poor diet but from the fact that his disease has a genetic basis. His mother and several others in his family were diagnosed with diabetes, some Type I and some Type II. He is quite scrupulous about checking his blood sugar and uses diet and exercise to control the levels. We are also fortunate to live in an area with excellent medical advice available.

  • Lisaann

    I am a Type I diabetic for 30yrs. I have a 5yr old daughter with occasional high b/s. She does not fit the Type I classification but doesn’t fall in to the Type II either. She is far from obese (tall & skinny), sedentery, etc. So what is she? – Type III? Who knows, she could end up in either of these 2 categories as she gets older. I have no ill feelings towards those with Type II but do believe that Type II diabetes is a WRONG TERM for their disorder. Perhaps calling what they have as “INSULIN RESISTANT” might be a better term. Type I diabetics actually have an AUTOIMMUNE DISORDER in which their bodies attack their own insulin producing cells – Type II diabetics don’t fall into this class. And yes, it does bring many to wrong assumptions. I am thin and people say to me “you can’t possibly have diabetes, look how skinny you are?” I have also had waitresses, etc. switch a diet soda or sugar for sugar substitute thinking I don’t possibly need them. Perhaps those of us with the Type I need to get to the news media people and start educating those others the difference and start calling those with Type II by a different term i.e., Insulin Resistant and it might catch on…..

  • Janet

    It is interesting how this has changed over the years. I have had Type 1 diabetes for over 45 years. I did get it at age 7 and the reactions were “you poor thing…so youmg” Now as an adult, I do get a little irritated when my PCP puts on my lab paperwork my diagnosis is Type 2. I have put on weight over the years secondary to insulin pump therapy but I do not have Type 2. Like one of the other comments, probably due to insulin resistance. There is such a delicate balance between food, insulin and activity that extra pounds can happen. It does frustrate me also when I see all the studies out there for Type 2. Where is the promised cure for Type 1? Although I realize that a cure probably won’t help me since I have had it so long.

  • Fran

    I think that there is alot of prejudice towards type 2 diabetics. People wrongly assume you have b/c of your weight. They don’t realize that many fat people do not have diabetes. There is a strong genectic link to type 2 diabetes and other conditions are linked to it like psoriasis and polycystic ovarian syndrome (which causes insulin resistance and weight gain)No, I never had severe hypoglycemia where I was unconsious or seizing but I have bee as low as 41 and that was scary enough. But even people on oral agents can under the right circumsatnces can go hypo. And although I have Type 2, I still have to test often b/c of the insulin. I can’t take too many vacations from diabetes b/c it will and has caught up with me. And don’t think that Type ones don’t take vacations also. i don’t think that this spitting contest over who has it worse helps. I think research into one coula help the other.


  • Bill

    I have been a type 2 diabetic for 10 years. I am now 73 years of age. For my height I am of the correct weight. I exercise and watch my diet. What went wrong? I have no idea. My mother
    was type 2, my grandmother was type 2. is it heredity? Perhaps, but I must live with it. I have never felt any tension from type 1 friends, etc. If anything it is more a group assistance here in my locale.

  • Don M

    All I have to add is:
    1) They are two completely different diseases.
    2) Neither type 1’s nor type 2’s need advice from ignorant public health, insurance, or other people who confuse one with the other.
    3) Personally, I am tired of mailings from my insurance company suggesting that I need a health coach, help picking what foods to eat, and in general, that I need any health coaching they are likely to provide.

    FYI, I have been Type 1 for 38 years, eat a low-carb diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables and fiber, 5’10”, weigh about 60 and run 20-25 miles a week, can do about 70 push-ups straight, and just ran my first half marathon. Yet no matter what I do, I still get advice from people who think I must be overweight and need to be told what to eat.

    and we are all affected by the diseases in question. Whether we are Victims Of Diabetes is our own choice. 😉

    peace y’all

  • Donna C

    We’re all in this together. I don’t see a reason to fight each other. We need to use our resources to fight the disease.

  • Dieselpowr33

    Great posts!! I’m type 1 and have been since 24y/o. I’m now 37!! I’m doing well, but, boy oh boy do I wish I was a type 2 diabetic!! I guarantee there is not one type 2 that wishes they were type 1. Yes, type 1 is worse, that is obvious, but, type 2 is also very bad. Type 2 does get most the attention because it consists of 99% of diabetics. Nonetheless, both need cures, especially type 1!!!! This I believe we can all agree on, it’s not rocket science.

  • Angela Norton

    Diabetes is first recorded in English, in the form diabete, in a medical text written around 1425. It meant the passing of large volumes of liquid, i.e. urine, which is one of the distressing symptoms of blood glucose out of control.
    In both type 1 and type 2 diabetes we deal with trying to normalize blood sugars and the complications of both type 1 and type 2 are related to that control. If our blood glucose never varied from a person without diabetes, we would not have any greater risk than a person without diabetes of developing the complications.
    I am a type 1 diabetic for 32 years but have always had to battle with my weight, so not all type 1’s are slim. Likewise; not all type 2’s are overweight and obesity is not always just because of overeating or under-excercising.
    Be kind to ourselves and each other and know that we do have much in common; the potential for high or low blood sugars and a host of secondary complications if we don’t try hard and get the right help.

  • S. Cason

    I have been type 1 for 44 plus years and am generally healthy and active.

    I have always been grateful that I have contracted the disease in this century rather than the last century.

    I also am a volunteer speaker for the DDF (Defeat Diabetes Foundation) and yes the focus is on Type 2 prevention. The main goal of these presentations is to make people aware of what to look for and to make healthy life style choices which can prevent or postpone the onset of the disease.

    Also I am very grateful for the research done for the treatment for Type 2 because my doctor recognizes that Type 1s can benefet from some of these treatments as well.

    The best advice I can give another diabetic I think is to accept your condition and deal with it in a positive way.

  • Mary Lou Gillard

    I agree they are two distinct and separate Enid diseases. I am glad I have type 1. No Bp,cholesterol problems and since I was dx 46 or so years ago the technical advances are “sweet”. Pun intended. I love my Dex com and my Animas pump. Everybody’s DM is different 1, 1 1/2, & 2 and within each category. It take alotslot of energy to hate DM energy better put to use in other ways

  • Don

    I was told I was a Type 2 diabetic in 1985. Up to that time I was active in sports and in a good healthy condition. Since that time I have had a stroke, bypass surgery, eye troubles, etc. I take medication and shots three times a day and exercise four times a week. When I was told I was a diabetic it caught me cold. I checked with my family to see if there was anyone else who had it or who ever had had it; the answer was not to anyone’s knowledge. I started reading up on the subject and attending classes to find out what I could. Diabetes is diabetes and both types can by as bad as the other. People who have it need to get as educated about it as possible. I am as healthy and active as I can be and control my diabetes with care, diet and exercise. As with all diabetics I have a disease and if I want to live I have to do my best to control it, not argue about who is the bigger bear in the woods.

  • BigBobSki

    I think it is a huge misconception by Type 1’s that all Type 2’s brought it on ourselves. Most of the male adults in my family have Type 2 and it has little to due with diet or exersize since neither help much at all for any of us. Most of us are not insulin dependent either. My considered opinion at this point is that we have genetically weak pancreases that just burn out at 40 or so. This is not much different except that it took 40 years for ours to give out and the Type 1’s gave out much earlier in life. Although I don’t have to test my blood more than once a day I still have to worry about every single morsel of food. I also get very low blood sugar sometimes if I am too busy and forget to eat. Sometimes I forget to give myself my Byetta injection until I’m half way thru a meal. Maybe it’s not AS bad as Type 1 but there are a lot of things that are the same and I’m stuck with it for life, too. “2 can be as bad as 1, it’s the loneliest number since the number 1” Three Dog Night

  • Robert

    I don’t know about this. I have type 2 diabetes but I must say my friends with type one have been an amazing resource for me and I feel very lucky to have them.

    I can see thru our individuallives the differences and similarities of both types and I think for there to be a dispute or even a thought that we are not in this together is just ridiculous.

    I am amazed at how difficult type 1 is to deal with compared with my type 2 but that doesn’t mean what effect one doesn’t affect the other.
    Yes I have had low blood sugar as well as an 800 blood sugar count (yes almost died) so what is the point of comparing.

    Learn enjoy each other’s company and don’t compare. Simply help and be compassionate to both types simply for the reason that it is the right thing to do.

    May we all get thru the best we can with the help of each other.

  • Heartha Whitlow

    I’ve had type 1 for 69 years, and I’m still around.
    I think one possible reason for this tension between Type 1s and type2 is that the type 1s
    read about the dietary advices given to the 2s, and it gives us a feeling that maybe “sloppiness” is OK.
    but that’s not true. We 1s have to be very careful. Maybe we’re envious?
    But I have lost friends who were Type 2, and I really do think they need to be more observant than they are now advised about diet and sometimes insulin.

  • Joan

    I completely understand both diseases. I don’t have any problem with people with type 2. I personally believe it can be brought on SOONER with sedentary lifestyles, but if the genetics are there, then it’s just a matter of time (unless you are one with pre-diabetes, make the lifestyle changes and CAN be one of the 75% who can stall the progression of the disease)..

    Anyway, I truly get ticked off at the medical community who do not know the difference, especially emergency room physicians who refuse to give orders for insulin to a type 1. THAT is when it becomes a problem. When the meds ASSUME one of middle age is a type 2 automatically, then I get mad.

    Thanks for listening,

  • Scott

    What I have the problem with is simple and I call it poor teaching. I have had type 1 for 32 years, and I know how to count carbs and give insulin to match. On the other hand, I have found that most people that I have spoken with that have type 2, have no knowledge what they have. 7 out of 10 that I have spoken with think type 2 is type 1, just not as bad. they think that it is the same you just get called type 2 when you are older. I just find, that people with type 2 need to be taught what they have and how to take care of it. I always say if they don’t know “Ask”. the other thing I find amusing is that they think that type 2 becomes type 1.
    So for all diabetics 1 and 2, just know what you have and take care of it the way it is supposed to be, and don’t be afraid to learn.

  • David Spero RN

    Great comments as usual! The scientific thing I get from this is that there are many more types than 1 and 2, as Calgary Diabetic pointed out. It’s amazing how little is understood, and how confident the doctors are as they give out misinformation!

  • Jonathan

    I have to say that after 27 years of being a Type 1, dx at age 2, I believe they are two completely different diseases. I have no choice in if I want to take my insulin shots or bolus via my pump, if I don’t take insulin I will dye.
    I agree that not all T2 diabetics do it to themselves, however a vast majority did choose to eat the wrong foods, not exercise enough, and not take better care of their bodies. I am angered every time someone says “You can’t be a diabetic” because I am very skinny, 5’9″ and 140 lbs! My condition has nothing to do with the overlying factors that most T2’s are in that cause their health issues.
    For those reasons I guess I do despise T2’s as the vast majority of funding into research and prevention is going towards their cause. It is that same reason I do not support the ADA and it’s goals. It spends way too much money on fund raising costs, T2 research and education. All of my charitable contributions for diabetes goes to the JDRF. They have a concentrated goal and it spends much less on fund raising cost’s. This is opinion is supported by the ratings of both charities via charitynavigator.org

  • David

    Yes,I’ll admit to being one of those who gets a bit peeved when people don’t understand the difference between a type 1 and a type 11. I have pretty much gotten used to the ignorance of many doctors and try to ignore the uneducated general public. But my experience has shown me that much of the irritation type 1’s have with type II’s is a result of the attitude of so many type II’s. First of all, as a group they obviously do not have a good understanding of their own disease, let alone what type I is. (just read some of the comments above)
    I have heard many T II’s say “I really don’t even know I have the disease”, and find many do not even know what their AIc levels are.
    How many times have I witnessed type II’s gobble down large amounts of potatoes and dessert at a meal? Often!
    I have no animosity toward the type II’s as a group…but admittedly resent being lumped together with them. I do believe that about 50% of them could be diabetes free with a lifestyle and diet change and that about that same % often give all diabetics a bad name. I believe one of the regular writers for the Diabetes Self Management blog is sometimes guilty of this.
    The fact that all types go by the same name definitely muddy s the water and clarification is much needed.
    Thanks again David for an excellent subject

  • Neil

    I’ve had T2 for 4 years and I really feel for those with T1. Trying to control their glocose open loop is a never ending battle. T2 is just basically an intolerance to carbs, so just don’t eat them and it’s controlled.

  • Don M

    BTW, I meant 160 9pounds), not 60. But I agee with all of the above!

  • Karen

    I have been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. Since following a good food management diet, my A1C has indicated it could be called insulin intolerance, according to my doctor. My suggestion for all is to ask, listen, read, learn about both types. It helps to understand.

  • Audrey Hicks

    I have had Type I diabetes for 34 years. I read tons of information regarding both I and II. I believe that Type I and Type II should be called by different names. It seems even after 34 yrs, I have to explain the difference between I & II to people. All people seem to understand is the word diabetes not really knowing there is a Type I and Type II. I have good control by the foods I eat, the exercise I get, and the insulin I inject. I am very lucky. What bothers me a lot is the marketing of breast cancer. They have done such a super job with everything. But with diabetes, I feel the marketing still needs improvement. Maybe this is because with breast cancer, people are getting chemo and looking pretty bad at times. With diabetes, you don’t necessarily see people looking sick even though diabetes is deadly. In marketing diabetes, I usually see fat people and fat children. Being fat is a negative and people get turned off. I don’t have answers but I just wanted to put this out. This is my opinion and I am sticking with it!

  • Muriel

    I was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes but after seeing an endocronologist and taking some tests, I have been diagnosed as both Type 1 and Type 2. The reason for this is that I took a diruetic for high blood pressure and it took out my pancreas for a while. I still take a small amount of insulin for each meal and a long acting insulin. After being diagnosed, I read everything I could on diabetes and I discovered that there are more than two types but Type 1 and Type 2 are the most common. I feel blessed that I still produce some insulin after not having my pancreas work for at least 3 months. I try to take care of myself by counting carbs and eating appropriately so that my A1C stays in the normal range. I definitely understand that Type 1 is very difficult but I also understand that Type 2 has problems also.

  • Scott Hogge

    i have enjoyed seeing the different opinons on here. i have had type 1 for almost 40 year’s. to look at me you would not know i have anything wrong, but i had to take disability 7 years ago because stress was making my complicatioins unmanagble. one thing i havn’t seen on here is the COST !!! how am i expected to live on what i get from disability? i am having to cut down the time i wear my pump bedcause of cost. humilog, which i have to use in my pump is not covered by medicare when you hit the donuthole. it’s $100 a bottle and i use 4 a month. i take 10 other perscription drugs……….. but this blog is not about that. what i have a problem with is with type 2, at least there is a chance you can be cured………..my drs told me a long time ago not to plan for retirement……..now i’m broke and blamed for my problems.
    you just have to live with what God gave you and do the best you can.

  • nicole

    diabetes is diabetes. we all face the same challenges and choices once diagnosed with it. i was diagnosed 5 years ago with type 1 after having gestational diabetes, thought i could manage it with diet and exercise, and found myself on insulin within a couple of months. for a very brief period i thought i WAS type 2. it turns out i had to make the same difficult decisions i’m now making as a type 1.

    when i meet a fellow diabetic, specifically one with type 2, i emphasize what a pain it is to live like this. i am still alive and thriving, and for that i’m grateful, but it’s hard work day in and day out. i tell them what i’ve figured out with my own diabetes. not to compete, not to compare, but because i know i also have a lot more information than them. i have the pump, i have a sensor, 8 extra readings a day…. i have a lot of numbers they don’t have access to. so i try to share it. and if they know something i don’t, i listen.

    my grandfather died of diabetes because he refused to have his leg amputated. to this day i don’t know if he had type 1 or type 2. it’s a good reminder that it doesn’t matter. this disease is ours, both similarities and differences, and we all have our work cut out for us…

  • Joan

    In response to Rob, earlier, who stated type 1s have it harder than type 2s.

    I truly have to disagree with that! I would WAY prefer to be a type 1 than 2. Why?

    When I eat something, since I wear a pump, I can dose for what I eat. I don’t HAVE a set schedule: You MUST take your shot at 8am and eat at 4pm.” Ugh! It USED to be that way for type 1s, but not any more. The invention/creation of new insulins made diabetes fit into my life, and not have to live my life around diabetes. I recommend ANYone, with any KIND of diabetes take insulin. Immediately. There is so much more freedom in lifestyle that way, and the potential of much better control.

    Also, in response to a couple other people stating there are more than 2 types of diabetes… How true. If you have the inclination, look up LADA and MODY. There are others, I am sure, but the ultimate goal for anybody with DM is to get good control, no matter how the disease came about.

    : )


  • JohnB

    I have been a type1 for 43 years and my gal is a type 2. They have the same name but are so different on many levels. The day in day out struggles deal with the same things food,exercize,meds etc but there is no comparison! I have known people who were type 2s but through changes in diet and exercize routines are not now! Others I know like my girlfriend got it without weight problems,bad diets or anything else? I don’t have a family history of diabetes,arthritis or any other contributers so they don’t know why I was diagnosed with it at 6 years? Let’s give us “DIABETICS” a break and just figure out a cure = if the drug companies really want that???

  • Joan

    In response to Don M:

    Cutting back back on carbs is a good thing to a certain extent. Cutting back entirely on carbs can give you high blood sugars… the liver stores some glucose (glycogen). It releases some of this stored glucose all the time (when you DO skip a meal, but still have energy to get up or go about your business, that energy has to come from glucose from somewhere..). So, when we skip meals, or lower carbs TOO much, the liver dumps some glucose into our blood. It is a balancing act to be sure, to know where these lines are. It just takes testing blood sugars to know, and, if you have cut back to the number of carbs per day that are recommended by a diabetes dietitian, but the FSBG numbers are still up, it is time for a medication or adding another medication.

    Hope this helps some! (Oh, the liver also kicks out some extra sugar in times of stress (need extra energy to deal with what is stressing us), in times of skipping meals and when/if our sugars go low. That liver is going to try to prevent us from getting weird when our brain cells don’t get enough energy and go on the fritz.)

  • Lisa B

    Hey Muriel, what diuretic for high blood pressure did you take? I’m on high blood pressure meds and i’m wondering if that’s one reason why my fasting blood test in the morning is so high (above 150). Please let me know, will you?

  • Katherine

    I’ve been browsing the posts. Something I don’t see listed is that some ethnic groups such as some Native Americans and Hispanc-Americans have a much higher chance of developing diabetes, particularly Type II. I also had a coworker at one point, a slender, south Asian man who had Type II. There are also some medical conditions, such as polycystic ovary syndrome that predispose a woman to Type II diabetes. I’ve known slender Caucasion adults with MODY – mature diabetes of youth(?) – which seems somewhere in the 1.5 category. So, yes, “lifestyle factors” such as obesity can lead to Type II, not all diabetes is caused by how a person treats their body. Sometimes it’s genetics, family history, apparent randomness, autoimmune factsor, etc., ad nauseam that cause this hard-to-live-with disease. And would I rather not have this disease? Absolutely! And–20 years later, I still appreciate the doctor who saw something that made her suspicious and had my blood sugar levels checked; I don’t know when diabetes would have been discovered otherwise. Thank you, Dr. D.

  • D Castle

    I have been a type 1 diabetic for over 40 years now. When someone tells me I shouldn’t eat that, or sugar brought on my diabetes I do my best to educate them and explain the differences between type 1’s and type 2’s and why I can eat a little more freely due to my insulin pump, but that I still have to be aware of the carbs I am eating and bolus appropriately. It IS frustrating that insurance rates are higher for diabetics and when I asked why I was told it was due to the expense of type 2 diabetes. I explained that I was type 1 and was told it didn’t make a difference as I was in the minority. Life isn’t always fair, I just do my best to live a healthy life and educate those who are willing to listen. I am grateful that I am a type 1 as I have been aware of my blood sugars for 40+ years and have no signs of complications that are more common for the type 2’s who may go for years without knowing they have diabetes, all the while damage may be affecting their organs and extremeties. I have always been grateful for my diabetes as there are MANY worse things to be afflicted with.

  • Betty

    I’m a Type 1 diabetic. Both types of diabetics have many issues to balance and work out constantly. It seems that Type 2’s get neuropathymore quickly than Type 1’s. They also seem to have more amputations than Type 1’s. I’ll take all the balancing of carbohydrates, excercise, insulin injections and/or boluses long before I’d ever take losing a limb! On the other side, among the general public, Type 1’s are hidden by the much larger group of Type 2’s. I still prefer that to losing a limb.

    Posted by Betty

  • sharon

    OMG… this sight is like fueling a atomic bomb to get anger started. Both type 1 and type 2 have problems with the same disease. Within each type there are many differences. I almost feel I could conduct a class better because of having the disease.
    I am Insulin dependant type 1 and have had 5 emergency visits to the hospital over the last 20 years to revive me from a dangerously low sugar level. Once it was almost “light out”. My insulin regime had been changed and I didn’t respond well in the beginning. It is very difficult to manage all the variable that need my constant attention.
    1) I have 2 kinds of insulins, did I just take the wrong one?
    2) I have to evaluate anything ingested to see which ones elevate my sugar (coffee stimulates the liver to secrete stored glucose even with NO FOOD)
    3) Illiness elevates my sugar. I need to calculate that into the equation
    4) Exercise is crutial in my regimen to help resist weight gain and utilize my insulin to the maximum
    5) If I lose weight I must reduce my insulin
    6) If I gain weight I must increase my insulin
    7) IF I decide to have an alcoholic beverage I MUST eat before I DRINK. The liver processes alcohol FIRST.
    Therefore, If I take my insulin, DRINK alcohol, then EAT it is a combination for disaster.
    The insulin starts working, the liver is process alcohol, my body cannot receive the glucose from my liver and now my Blood Sugar goes LOW.
    Hope this didn’t depress anyone!!!!

  • Irene

    I’ve had diabetes Type 1 since I was 2 years old and have learned to live with it through all my life. There is one thing that I find that I’ve had the benefit of controlling it with check ups and diet, exercise,insulin and hardly any complications. Type 2 diabetes,when diagnosed, have already complications to deal with. So I somtetimes feel that Type 1 diabetes, has saved my life of complications.

  • Charles Ferguson

    1. DIABETES Is For Life…..Know your HgA1c: Work to keep it lower than 7 by eating a balanced diet, taking your medications and exercising. My AgA1c has never been over 7 since the test was first given.
    2. LIVE lIFE Every Day….None of us get it right all the time. One of my doctors told me, as I was thanking him for teaching me so much about caring for myself, that he told all of his patients the same thing – “some chose to do it and some chose not to do it”. Believe you also have a smart doctor and do it.
    3. LIFE Is A Journey…..Being persistant and patient, working to form good habits, will help you also live a long, happy and prodictive life. I have had type 1 diabetes for over 50 years with no complications of any kind. I only know what I need to do to keep me staying healthy. In my diabetes support group the discussion is only what works for me. Live long enough to find out what works for you.

  • James D.Taylor

    Sorry to throw a brick at “Can’t we all just get along” chorus but having now survived with Type 1 for over 45 years and heard from the age of 5 that “You must of eaten a lot of sugar when you were little” I’ve got to vent about the fact that I have NO OPTIONS when it comes to my daily care and treatment regimen as my continued existence on this planet demands that.
    As a child, I attended meetings of the ADA and my one “role model” was Mary Tyler Moore. As time went on and America’s chronic dietary issues led to an exponential increase in Type 2 diagnosis I found myself often as one of the “silent minority” of Type 1’s at ADA meetings and shared
    little in common (Age,medical,demands,diet,
    exercise, etc.)with the majority of those in attendance.
    Luckily for me, at about the same time that my own frustration began to build about this situation a woman my mother had grown to know through the informal Type 1 “parenting sanity support network” established a new non-profit organization FOCUSED SPECIFICALLY ON THE CARE, TREATMENT, RESEARCH, AND CURE OF TYPE 1 DIABETES AND IT”S MYRIAD OF COMPLICATIONS. This group, THE JUVENILE DIABETES RESEARCH FOUNDATION (Its very name gives you an idea how long it’s been in existence) has been a godsend for those of us diagnosed with an incurable auto-immune disease that we played absolutely no part in facilitating or causing
    Since my diagnosis in 1965 I’ve seen new diseases burst onto the scene and massive strides made toward there care and control (AIDS.Anyone ever hear of that in 1965?) Much of that success came through significant increases in the amounts of funding carved out of the NIH budget. Forgive me for my selfishness but I’ve seen far too many of my counterparts with Type 1 succumb to a litany of horrors (blindness,renal failure, amputations, etc.) to not be frustrated when research funding is lumped together for both Type 1 and Type 2 when they actually share little in common at the core diagnosis.
    All my spare funds that I can afford will always go to an organization that is working to bring an end to this auto-immune killer before it strikes the next generation of TRULY INNOCENT victims of Type 1 diabetes

  • Carol

    What a mistaken idea that Type 2 caused it themselves or could correct it with diet and exercise. I was diagnosed at age 65, after eating a very low fat, healthy diet for more than 5 years. I walked 3-4 miles daily and weighed less than my height allowed. I am a retired nurse but was employed at the time. Despite my diet and exercise within 5 years I had my gall bladder removed, was diagnosed with DM II and lived with high total cholesteral and triglycerides and very low good cholesterol–which is totally genetic. My daughter-in-law that has DM type 1, has fewer problems with low blood sugars, has a lower A1C, and does not restrict her diet as severely as I do most of the time. Why is there even a discussion about “who is worse–who is more responsible for their DM–who suffers more.” It is ridiculous. Neither asked for the disease anymore than someone asking for cancer, pancreitis, cardiac disease or any other chronic disease. Try thinking beyond yourself and care about others. There is always someone in worse shape.

  • Charles Ferguson

    I am your constant companion.
    I am your greatest helper or heaviest burden.
    I will push you onward or drag you down to failure.
    I am completely at your command.
    Half the things you do might just as well be truned over to me and I will be able to do them quickly and correctly.
    I am easily managed – you must merely be firm with me.
    Show me exactly how you want something done and after a few lessons I will do it automatically.
    I am the servant of all great people and, alas, of all failure, as well.
    Those who are great, I have made great.
    Those who are failures, I have made failures.
    I am not a machine, though I work with all the precision of a maachine plus the intelligence of a person.
    You may run me for profit or run me for ruin – it makes no difference to me.
    Take me, train me, be firm with me, and I will place the worlde at your feet.
    Be easy with me and I will destroy you.
    WHO AM I?
    (A Habit)

  • David

    Let us stop this Kumbaya…can’t we all just get along foolishness.
    Type I’s and type II’s are actually opposites.
    Type I’s typically do not have the metabolic syndrome of high bad cholesterol and low good cholesterol and triglycerides. Yes, it is true that some type I’s are overweight and some type II’s are not…but overall, statistically… it is the opposite.
    Type I’s will lose body mass without insulin…even eating away at muscle…type II’s gain weight.
    They are entirely different diseases and doctors must stop trying to treat them as the same in the early stages. “Just take this pill and everything will be fine”.
    I am an LADA who had to take a trip to the emergency room before they “got it”.
    I do feel for anybody suffering with any type of disease…but continuing to identify type I and II as simply “diabetes” cannot do anything but delay the cure for those type I’s who fight for their lives everyday as they awake in the morning, calculate meals…and the most crucial of all…go to bed with a “good number”.
    Let’s keep it real, folks.

  • pamtime

    Fortunately, I have had to opportunity to live as both type 2 and type 1. It is called LADA 1.5…. For 33 years I was a type 2, my name was Pam and I had diabetes. For two years I have been type 1.5 and I am diabetic and my name is Pam… Sounds strange… yes…let me explain….. as a Type 2 I worked hard to control my bg at all times. I carb counted, did not cheat, maintained a healthy weight, was aware of my health and stayed healthy. Two years ago that changed and my insulin production had dropped to 16%. I still insisted on diet..until my A1c had gone from 6.8 to 11.7…alas insulin was the only option… What was the difference. Certainly not the insulin, I had used that as a type 2 years ago before I figured out how to care for myself. The change for me an the manifestation of my anger was I now had to eat on schedule, my day revolves around meal, snacks, meal ets, insulin dose, activity levels, waking on schedule, and the fear of experiencing another 34 blood sugar in the middle of the night.

    Yes there is a difference between the two. I still meet people that lecture me on how to care for myself or that I should have taken better care of myself as if this is some punishment metered out by a higher power….ignorance is rampant… I have type 2’s that I have know for years assume because I am on insulin that I can go out and eat to my hearts content…ah no, I am very insulin resistant and my carbohydrate ration is 1:3…why would I choose to do that to myself when I chose not to as a type 2…. I think all the planning ahead bothers me the most. There is no longer that air of spontaneity I enjoyed as a Type 2… but as a Type 1.5 I still understand the struggles of the Type 2 issues. There is some assumption that I did this to myself, there is the diabetic food police…their hearts are in the right spot but their heads are buried. For gosh sakes all you diabetes police pick up a book and educate yourselves…there is free info on the web…

    We all share common issues and the issue now is teamwork… we are all working for the same cause, eradicate the disease so I don’t have to live it 24/7 please. There is enough fighting in the world lets hold each other up and fight together… it take a whole village to raise the child or cure the disease…

  • Margarette Walker

    One of my best friends has type 1 & I have type 2. I know the daily problems she has, & she knows the daily problems I have. No one chooses to have a chronic illness. Besides the type 2, I also have Rheumatoid Arthritis & Parkinson’s, so sometimes walking is a pain, let alone exercise, but I still do it in moderation on bad days. Type 2 runs in my family, so I was prepared for it, but I definitely didn’t want it & I didn’t choose to have it!

  • Kathy Mack

    To me it is not important what type of diabetes the person has, type 1, type 2, type 1.5, MODY, Neonatal Diabetes, etc, etc, etc. The important thing to ask is, “Is the person getting the best possible treatment for their diabetes at the current time?
    One question you asked is “Have you ever known a person with type 2 to have lows severe enough to pass out, etc?”
    Yes, I have the person was type 2 and insulin dependent. He could not go without insulin. Now that did not make him a person with type 1. He had had type 2 long enough he was insulin dependent and needed insulint to live.
    It does not help that there is bickering. We need to support one another and go after the media for pushing the idea that we “did this to ourselves.” and get them to stop promoting this false idea, that so many people take as gospel.”

  • Diane P

    As the parent of a child with Type 1 diabetes, I have been troubled by misinformed comments about his disease. People frequently confuse T1 with T2 but it is no wonder when the media and also fundraising groups lump the two types together. It would not take but 2 little words to at least mentions the name differentiation. Of course, that is not enough. just a start. When my son has to sit through an assembly at school in which the P.E. teacher says “diabetes is caused by lifestyle choices…” I want to raise a little hell but instead I politely send them information that discusses both types etc. Honestly. most people don’t make a point of understanding common disease unless they have to due to diagnosis etc. Even then there are people that don’t choice to understand their own diseases. I wholeheartedly agree with Larry’s comments about the diagnosis differences. The one crazy benefit to the rapid onset of T1 is that the individual must mount a quick response if they choose to survive. This is simply not the case with T2 which is typically damaging the individuals health for many years before a diagnosis is finally made…and then sadly, the response mounted by the T2’s doctor apparently doesn’t carry the weight of the T1 in which the individual is basically told that they will not survive, let alone live well, without daily insulin and bg checks. T2’s are often told to go home and “lose weight, eat better and exercise” like simply saying those magic words will make it happen without some motivator such as impending death and as mentioned above not all T2’s were overweight or eating unhealthy foods in the first place. I agree with others who have commented that education is the key and that is my frustration with the various media outlets and diabetes associations and fundraising groups who so carelessly save page space or air time by just saying “diabetes” when they could differentiate between the two with a few more words. That would at least be a start!!

  • Thom

    Having been diagnosed with “adult onset”
    (commonly referred to as type 2) diabetes seventeen years ago – believe me when I say “If I was doing this to myself, I would change what I am doing.”
    For some of us there are so many similarities between the two types (I take insulin, I check my sugars multiple times per day and I DO NOT get to “take a day off” when I feel like it.
    I read a reference to type 1.5 in some of the responses – my doctor refers to mine as type 1.5 and my sincere hope is that more doctors will start using that term and, in that way, the two types can find some common ground.

  • Sharon Henry

    My sixteen year old daughter has had type 1 diabetes since she was seven years old. I was diagnosed with type 2 five months ago. There is a world of difference between the diseases. My daughter must check her sugar at least five times per day and if she does not bolus correctly there can be immediate dire consequences. Everytime she has had a stomach virus it has turned into a hospital stay due to the need for IV fluids.I would say that her bodies reaction to exercise, stress, illness etc. is much more extreme with blood sugars that are like a roller coaster.
    Type 2 diabetes has made me much more conscious of my food and exercise but a little change goes a long way. I am now off insulin and just taking pills. I find that my numbers remain fairly stable. I can even forget I have it once in awhile without consequence. The problem is that since type 2’s do not have to walk that dog every day it is easier to allow the disease to progress and the long term may be worse for them.

  • Jim Devlin

    Many more differances between Type 1 and Type 2 than there are similiarities.
    No question these two diseases should have differant names.
    This would aid in the research of Type 1 and this reason alone, although there are several others, is reason enough to rename Type 2.
    Type 2 is a distant cousin of Type 1 and there is good reason to make the public aware of this.
    I am so tired of explaining the differance while looking into glassy eyes.

  • Jay Potts

    My wife died at age 57 after 3 1/2 years of dialysis and 29 years of diabetes. Genetic, she never was overweight. I was 30 pounds underweight at age 24 and 30 pounds overweight and borderline diabetic at age 57. I blame my condition on excessive candy, carbs and less exercise as I aged. Now Type 2 at age 77, I try to fight the old bad habits now that my weight is correct.
    Neither of my parents had diabetes.
    “I’ve found- Cheat now, pay for it next year.”

  • diabetic13-5

    One up manship between anyone with a DIS-ease is stupid. It just makes it harder for all of us. I’ve been type 2 for 13 years and am on almost max oral meds and with some control have gone from alc of 8.5 to 6.0. My childhood GP told me I would be diabetic by 35, I beat it for a number of years after that! When your family is rife with autoimmune disorders of various, and live a very stressed life, you can expect to get something.

    I find the issue is with big pharma – I’ve seen the ruling for labeling someone diabetic at bg 154 to now at 120…..only after many oral drugs have been developed and pushed. There is some science behind it, but too much is conflicting. If those of us with a disease work together, we can make it easier and cheaper for the entirety to deal with it.

  • spunky

    “It’s normal for people with chronic conditions to become hyper-focused on our own problems, making it harder to see other people’s problems.”

    This is an exceptionally insensitive comment from the blog. If you had to bring a monitor, insulin and hypo snacks with you every time you crossed the street and could not make a lunch date, pick a movie to see at the cinema or face getting stuck in traffic without considering your bloodsugar’s reaction as a means of your own personal survival (and others’ if you are driving), perhaps you might reconsider that remarkably cruel statement. Pull your head out.

    Otherwise, Type 2 is much more common and readily diagnosed than type 1. I get tired of the “free” advice that I get from TV shows, strangers who notice my medical ID bracelet and everyone who has read an article or a package that is labeled “good for diabetics”, or “can prevent diabetes.” I was diagnosed when I was one year old- do you really think fi I ate more or less fiber/persimmons/fruit/raw veggies and worked out more/less/differently at the age of one that I would not have become diabetic?

    I find that type II diabetics, having been more recently diagnosed seem to think they know everything or at least the “newest” stuff about all diabetes, and direct me on how I should eat. Hey, I have had diabetes for 35 years longer than you, have no permanent damage from it- and you are giving me advice? No thanks.

    I agree with those who say that the conditions should have different names. The causes, treatments and medications are different– it makes no sense to ever consider the conditions alike in the least.

  • Chris

    Hi All! My name is Chris and I was diagnosed with Type-2 diabetes 12/13-years ago. I was not over-weight at the time of my diagnosis…just had the usual symptoms. It was discovered during an exam and lab draw.

    I first started taking the oral meds. They worked “OK” at 1st, but then stopped working very shortly. Metformin/Glucophage worked well (helped my high colesterol/triglycerides too), but I had a bad allergic reaction to it. So then I was on Actos and insulin for awhile. When I started having some reaction to the Actos and it wasn’t working that well, I went on insulin only. Was doing the short/long acting insulins till I got on a pump and now am taking Symlin with the insulin.

    I’m now totally dependent on insulin. In the beginning of my diagnosis it appeared I was producing some insulin…but now if I look at a pic of carbs, my sugars go up! My Endo said I am a Type-2 “with a pooped-out pancreas”.

    So far, other than on some of the forums, I haven’t had any Type-1 police after me or any attacks…but sure hope I don’t. Due to not producing very much or no insulin in my pancreas…I feel that I’m almost in the same boat as the Type-1’s, and that we should work to support each other and help each other, not argue who’s disease/diabetes is worse than the others. That’s not productive. Not every Type-2 diabetic gets diabetes due to poor diet and health management.

    Proud to say I got my H1C down from almost 9.0 to 7.0 and that I feel that I’m getting my diabetes under control. Hope my story helps to show that there are all type’s of Type-2’s in this world of diabetes! 🙂


  • DFBabb

    Mr. Spero, judging by this incredible response to your blog, there is an obvious question.
    Where do we go from here?
    You are in a very rare position to make a difference.
    I have read every response and wrote one of my own.
    We need an intelligent and capable person to take the next step and help us all.
    Is that you?

  • Roger Campbell

    As I get closer to my 63rd year of insulin. I recall the name changes over the years. I don’t care if it is T2 or T1 I only care if I make my 75 year mark. After that I will think of 100 years. I was told by my mother that DR Joslin told her in 1947 they would cure this in another 5 years.

  • mary jo

    I think both sides have the same frustrations and anger dealing with a chronic disease. I have type 1 and have been diabetic since I was 19, my parents were type 2 older in life and never understood my mood swings and need for food at specific times in response to the dips in blood sugars until they had a low blood sugar. Now they understand a little better but still forget what it feels like until I remind them. I don’t care who comes up with a cure-I will be eternally grateful!!

  • Cindy B

    I don’t read alot of blogs but because I’m a Type 1 Diabetic for almost 34 years I decided to check it out. I am the only Type 1 in my family but we have several Type 2’s. I really don’t feel any animosity towards them or any Type 2 or any other Type 1. We all have similarities and differences like any other disease out there and none are certainly better than the other. When confronted by people who don’t understand about either form I explain to them in simple terms. I get frustrated about it at times but I get frustrated about my job, my family, my life, etc for a variety of reasons. Like all of them you put them in perspective and live life from day to day. And I focus on MY DIABETES not someone else’s Diabetes. I have always treated mine as a condition I live with and treat but I don’t let it rule me and what I want to do. I am reasonably healthy with few complications and am not the super tight control freak. I live life in good control that allows me to still live life, like going to movies, out to lunch, 26 hour train trips, etc. I’ve also had severe cases of Bronchitis, stomach flu’s, etc and never had to be hospitalized. To put it bluntly I think alot of these bloggers who are so angry are creating too much stress in their lives which has never helped anyone’s blood sugars or blood pressures. What we all need to do is focus on our own Diabetes to help ourselves stay as healthy as possible and saty as positive as we can and help others understand as best we can. It is what it is, so accept it and move forward.

  • T. C.

    I am a type two diabetic who has to take shots for every mean and sometimes snacks, if there is even a bread or fruit involved. I take more insulin than the normal type 1 because I am resistant as well as have absolutely no insulin of my own that I can find. LOL.

    I have only been a diabetic for three years and my doc doesn’t understand why it is like this. So some of us do understand how it is with the diabetic one people. I am young, I spent most of my life trim, until my son was born, I gained a few pounds, nothing tremendous, and boom! I had always had checks on my blood sugar, even three months before I had diabetes. They didn’t even see a borderline number.

    I don’t see why people get so mad at each other. This disease is a pain, no matter which type you have. You don’t get to eat what you like; you are labeled, and you can die or be maimed in some way.

  • Ray

    As you read comments, even some professing neutrality, there is something said that they are putting themselves on one side or the other of an imaginary fence.
    When you have type 1 saying, it is your fault you got this and yet they would be offended by the statement that your body is so stupid it is attacking itself.
    Or the type 2 that says I have to watch what I eat while the type 1 can eat anything and just bolus for it while the type 2 pretty much eats what they want anyways.

    Why don’t we all just work together, then sit back and watch the cancer patients fight it out who has the better cancer.

  • Bill H-D

    There are clearly misconceptions on both sides here, and this is no surprise. This is in part due to the fact that the pathology of diabetes mellitus (all types) is not clear.

    What all of the various types have in common is an inadequate insulin response. The body simply doesn’t regulate blood glucose normally, causing a risk of highs and the associated damage of high BG.

    Type I diabetes is usually diagnosed when a person cannot make insulin. Type II, when a person cannot make enough or use enough…or when a another metabolic process is out of control (e.g. the liver dumping too much into the bloodstream). This last thing, by the way, is what metformin treats for: liver function. In newly diagnosed Type II patients, insulin resistance may also be present…but it is often another metabolic process that is responsible for high fasting glucose numbers overnight that trigger some form of treatment.

    What is not known, completely, is what causes a person to have an inadequate insulin response. Some people can present with many of the metabolic syndrome risk factors and still have a normal insulin response.

    Insulin resistance, inadequate insulin production due to beta cell loss (autoimmune or otherwise), and improper liver calibration (I like to think of it as a broken thermostat) all play a role in all types of diabetes, depending on the individual. And those are just the main three that we know about and have common pharma interventions for. This is diabetes mellitus.

  • Mitch

    I am a type two diabetic, I am 74. At 35 I was told my blood sugar “was on the high side”. At 50 I started taking pills, at 60 I started taking insulin. I am six feet and 177 pounds, my glycohemigloben stays at about 6.0. I have no symptoms yet. I am complimented for how physically active I am. I watch what I eat off course. But I believe the “sliding scale” is my best defense against high blood sugar. Novalog, quick acting and Novalin time release insulin. I am a retired Civil Engineer and I would not pretend to advise you what to do, but I know what I can do and when I need insulin and how much. I know my disease could go critical, but so far so good for me. And I wish good luck to you.

  • linda

    I am a type 2. I think the biggest issue occurs when the media discusses diabetes. The media and thus public opinion empathizes with type 1. After all, they were born with a real disease, while types 2’s are painted as lazy, overweight, gluttons. Pictures and films are only of the extremely obese when type 2 is discussed. The media imposes a lot of guilt with type 2. We should be able to ‘control’ our disease. Insulin and other drugs are only mentioned with type 1. I am a 60 year old female, 5 foot, 0 inches tall. I weigh 117 lbs, walk 3 miles daily and eat well. I look like a picture of health. I have done everything ‘right’. Yet I have metabolic syndrome. It first showed up as high cholesterol when I was 40 and has progressed to diabetes. I now need pills and insulin. I visit my endocrinologist quarterly. Well meaning friends always assume that I am doing something wrong and want to tell me to exercise more or change my diet referring to the latest article they have read. I have no issue with type 1s. Only with the media that does such a poor job of explaining type 2.

  • Susie

    Being a type 1 for 14 years now, I’ll go ahead and admit that in the past I’ve felt a little prejudice and anger at type 2’s for having the “easier” version of the disease, but thankfully I’ve matured past that. What we need to end all this misunderstand and mistaking diseases is education and information, and despite the new technological age, people seem to not fully comprehend that. When a classmate of mine finds out I am diabetic, I am amazed if they even ask what type I am. It surprises me, because in my health class the information we got on diabetes was basically “You have a pancreas, it can stop working, the end (oh by the way there are two types).” If everyone, diabetes, the media, and the public alike were educated more on such diseases, perhaps there would be more collaboration between the two types, and a better chance for us both.

  • brittany

    To me diabetes is diabetes. I know type 1s and type 2s. Yes they are different. They are handled different, treated different, and have SOME different dangers. A type 1 is more likely to go into DKA; type 1s are supposed to carry a glucagon kit in case of emergencies. I hate to travel b/c I have to pack extra insulin, test strips, etc. Both are bad. There is an overall stereotype that diabetics are overweight (or were), brought it on themselves, etc. I don’t know why fate chose me for type 1… But many type 2s can’t help it. Yes obesity is a major problem, but many fit/healthy people get type 2 thanks to genetics. Perhaps a cure for one will cure the other… The problem is though while I was doing advocacy work, I had a congressman (M.D) tell me he wanted to combat diabetes by making all fast food restaurants post nutritional info at the drive through. Wouldn’t do a type 1 any good. And it would help many type 2s but not all. There is a difference b/t the two, and I’ll admit someone telling me they know just how i feel about my diabetes who takes 1 pill a day verses 4 shots…. no it doesn’t always sit well with me.

  • Fay Lambie

    Hey, cheer up Type 1’s!!! A lot of us 2’s are likely to end up as Type 1’s! Misery loves company, right? I had extremely bad neuropathy before I was ever diagnosed with diabetes. In fact, it took a few years for the diabetes to show up. It affects almost every part of my body, including, feet, limbs, bladder, bowels, digestion, pretty much everything. So having type 2 as opposed to type 1 is a walk in the park…albeit a “painful” walk in the park.

  • Luis


    I’m a type 2 diabetic, diagnosed 6 years ago and because of a liver disease I take insulin since day one, fortunately only once a day, and check my glucose once a day or several times if I eat something I never ate before. That’s fortunate, I know.

    I already had 3 hypoglicemias and it’s hard and frightening, and I don’t even imagine what living with type 1 diabetes is, although I’ve read two good books on the subject and I fully realise the diference between the two (deseases?) types of diabetes.

    One can say that I did it to myself, and maybe it’s true, I ate fries and bread without restraint in spite of my granmother, grandfather and my mother all had diabetes and since age 6 (I’m 49) I went to the clinic with my grandmother (she took care of me) and watched her taking insulin shots, everyday of her life until she died.

    Everyday of my life I waited to learn that I was a diabetic and every year or half-year I made glucose tests at the hospital, and sometimes even the one to see the glucose curve (don’t know the name), even so, at 5’8 and 140 lbs I wasn’t too much worried, but my genes caught me and I developed another cronic desease, Diabetes!

    In my country (Portugal) most of the people don’t know what diabetes is (they often tell me, “oh, I know, you have to puncture your finger right?) and I say “yes, right…”, just imagine how many of them know that there are two types of diabetes.

    To my eyes there are two diferent deseases with the same symptom (excess blood sugar and with the same origin (pancreas not working), altough with two very disimilar causes, type one because the organism doesn’t recognise the pancreatic cells as their own and destroy them, and type two where the pancreatic cells just stop working by overload.

    In spite the causes for the desease are diferent, the treatment is similar and one, getting the sugar out of the blood and into the cells.

    Type one doesn’t have ways of maikng insulin so only one treatment is viable, insulin shots, both slow and fast under a dead penalty. That’s the main reason type one diabetic people think they have a worse desease.

    Type two have several ways of treatment, with some medicines that work in the liver metabolism, and some don’t even need medicine. The penalty for the lack of treatment is ultimately, death, as ever is; but before you die you get blind, tired to the point you’re unable to work, maybe amputated, you’r kidneys may shut-down…

    I’d rather get killed overnight, but it’s only me.

    Diabetes is my 2nd cronic desease, I have Hepatitis C, to which I’ve made a 9 months qimioteraphy treatment, and I have (so they say) the bipolar desease and I have to take madicine for the rest of my life for that and insulin for the diabetes.

    Well this post is way too long, I hope it’s good enough to get posted and that it shed some (dim) light on the subject.

  • John Q

    I agree that there should be two names. How about

    “Glucosis Martyrus” for type ones and “Diabetes Lazyfatjerkus” for type two. After all, that’s how the media (and a lot of Doctors) see it.

  • Joye

    My Mom’s Mom had type 1 diabete for over 50 years. My Dad’s Dad was also diabetic for many years.I became diabetic (type 2) about 6 years ago due to genetics and stress. In the class I took shortly after diagnosis I was the only one in class trying to GAIN weight! Talk about a reaction! I was 110 pounds trying to get to 125. I was 5’4″ tall, 62 years old and FINALLY got to my 125 pounds 4 years ago. Because of my family connection with type 1 I am quite aware of the similarities and differences in the two types. So far I don’t have to take insulin and I only take 1 tablet Metformin in the morning. I thank God that I am not yet in a more advanced stage where insulin and multiple testings are required. However, I am also aware the despite all the hype about “curing” type 2 with diet and exercise I will likely end up taking insulin in the future. As my doctor told me, “If type 2 diabetes could be cured by diet & exercise, you wouldn’t have it.” She figures the “cures” are mostly misdiagnosed pre-diabetics who got control in time, but their future is no guarantee.

  • John (Type I 40 years)

    I think each of can benefit from increasing our understanding of the care and treatment of any Diabetes condition, complications and theraply as well as being aware of ongoing research and emerging technology.

    It seems to be becoming a Type X vs Type Y, but even within s specific type such as my long-standing and “brittle” Type I, I’ve found that dialog and an open mind is very beneficial.

    This dialog not only includes our health care team, but also can be extremely beneficial with peers to expand our communication and support network. Type II’s did not “choose” their predisposition any more than Type I “choose” to become autoimmune.

    Hope this helps and I reach to everyone with a chronic condition, not only Diabetes. Warm regards to all of us and thanks to Diabetes Self-Management for providing useful information and the ability to post comments for continued communication and feedback.

    John, Type I diagnosed 1971

  • Mary Jane

    I have type 2 diabetes and I certainly did nothing to get it. Yes I’m over weight because I have heart,kidney,lung disease so living with all these chronic diseases has taught me the old addage is true, live today as if it were your last, let those that you care about know it now. To say that one type of diabetes is worse than another is unfortunetly true but still it means that both types must always be alert to their bodies needs and be aware of the pitfalls that do exsist for both types. Seems to me we all have the same problems, some a bit worse than others but still the same. It helps nothing or no one to be super critical when a smile can help everyone even when we don’t feel like smiling.
    so let all just keep hanging in there for a better future. God Bless everyone.

  • Lina Ranger

    I am adult onset Type 1 and also have Addison’s Disease. I do get quite a bit of prejudism due to the implications – more EMT calls in the middle of the night than pre-Addison’s, fatigue issues, and low blood pressure issues. I cannot seem to get any disability, and have truoble with most jobs, even though I am in shape, out-doorsy whenever possible but never know what to expect. I sypathise with everyone with issues of any kind and hope we can work together!!!

  • jackie

    I was always angry at people with type2, because i did think they caused the disease themselves with overeating. My daughter and grandson have type1 and I pray every day that a cure is found. It was disheartening to read so many articles that were focused on curing type2. Then, my brother who is extremely thin and 2 of my nephews who are thin and very focused on their health developed type 2 diabetes. I am of the opinion that it is a disease that runs in families. I hope and pray that both forms of this disease are cured in their lifetimes.

  • Heather Foster

    Just to let you know I am 36 and have had type1 for 31 years. Being type 1 or 2 should know how to eat and snack. Counting carbs is not too hard and it can help everyone to be healthier. Not just counting carbs but eating healthy foods. Have fresh fruits and veggies for snacks. It is so frustrating for one person to say rude things like: one person is so much sicker than another. People should just work together to help each other. No one is more important than the other. Thank you.

  • Bob S

    I was diagnosis with diabetes about 10 years ago in an emergency room when I was admitted with feelings of physical exhaustion. My blood sugar was at 485. I think a I had the problem at least 5 years prior to this event. I had started to loose feeling in my toes but the physician I was seeing at the time failed to put two and two together. I have now found out completely by accident that since I was in Vietnam during the time that they used Agent Orange there to clear the foliage, that they have concluded that it could likely be the cause of Type 2 diabetes and neuropathy in both feet and up the ankles as well as in my hands to a limited extent. I think that there is much more to learn about this disease and so we should not stereotype the people who have this condition. I am sure that I don’t have the difficulties that Type 1 cases experience. I have a number of friends who have this condition and I openly admit that they face different difficulties than what I do. I am insulin dependent and its a battle for me to maintain my blood sugars as well.

  • chris lillquist

    We all have a serious disease and need the support of all diabetics thats the only way we can beat this thing.Also try to be better to your fellow diabetic they are going through hell daily.
    I respect and wish you all well.


  • GiGi B

    I am a type 1 or as it used to be called “Juvenile diabetes”. Diabetes is hard regardless of when it was diagnosed. We should not be judging each other at all! This is terrible. What we need to do is work as a team and educate doctors – I have military health care and have almost been killed from the eager beavers who see a diabetic and want to do every test under the sun. I have an A1C of 4.5 and was misdiagnosed with high bp. I am off all bp meds and just fired my doctor and filed a grievence report against her. Sadly this new doctor is even worse…..since she couldnt find anything wrong with my diabetes, she focused on my heart murmur is put in a request for a cardio doc (I DONT THINK SO). She is with holding all other requests until I do this.

    You are probably asking why am I posting this? Because as I said, It is important that we all work together – type 1? type2? It is diabetes folks!!!!


  • Rocky

    What’s the big deal? I have a blood sugar dysfunction and I work daily to treat my disease as best I can. Why the need to pigeon hole ourselves? I have a different thumbprint than anyone else’s so I know I am not exactly the same as anyone else. How can I expect my disease is exactly like anyone else’s? How can my daily choices to mitigate my disease be the same as anyone else’s? If I focus on our differences then I miss the chance to learn and help others. If I have a feeling of superiority because of comparing my situation to yours so I can feel better about myself then I have two problems. My choice is to either be a part of the solution or a part of the problem. Today I choose to be a part of the solution.

  • Erik Carlson

    Great discussion! I have been a type 1 for 17 years (dx’ed at 28). I agree that I prefer having type 1. Many of my friends and co-workers suffer with type 2 and the extremity of the damage to their bodies over the last 10-15yrs or more is stunning. I have reasonably low levels of damage in general, mostly because I can’t just forget it if I plan on being alive 3 days from now. My friends, on the other hand, have trouble staying alert and careful. A lot of the trouble seems to be the accuracy of education, or the lack of understanding of their disease. The professionals that are helping them frequently give poor advice, or don’t check to make sure their patients really understand. I do what I can if its appropriate, but dislike telling them what to do, even if asked because it is so critical to know yourself. The enmity between the types is human nature but sad none-the-less. Thanks E

  • Linda

    I have type 2 diabetes and I take 2 insulin injections a day and monitor my blood sugars 4-6 times a day it is a constant battle for me as I have a lot of low sugars it is a seesaw I can either be to low or in the 200’s it feast or fathom for me some days I try to eat right but some days I just give up it doesn’t matter weather you are type 1 or type 2 you always have to be diligent about watching your numbers.To diabetes is diabetes no matter weather it is type 1 or 2.I really see no difference in either.Diabetes is Diabetes we should try to help each other try to encourage and help one another..I was diagnose 25 yrs ago and I was in denial for many years until I had to go on Insulin I told my Dr that I didn’t have time for this desease boy I wish I would have listened to him I probably could have controlled it thru excercise and diet.Being Diabetic is hard work there are days I get discouraged I have my pity party then I get over it and go forward my biggest problems are the persistent low sugars and remembering to take time to eat my snacks I get busy and I don’t want to take the time to eat.Lets just try to work together and help each other out share what works for us and maybe we can help others along the way..

  • Babs

    I am Type 1 and I have to admit, when people find out that I’m diabetic, I explain that it’s not the common Type 2 diabetes that you hear about – partly because I’m just a tiny bit
    overweight and feel I need to clarify it. A lot of Type 1’s are too thin and don’t look healthy. People tell me I look great! And the comment someone had about someone saying to her that she didn’t look like a diabetic is a compliment, I think!

    Anyway, I realize that I have had a bit of prejudice against Type 2’s because of my being a little overweight, but that is MY fault!!!! I could lose a few pounds!!! But life’s too short to bicker back and forth! Let’s be compassionate towards each other and try to understand what we all are going thru – and it’s really not that bad if you have a positive attitude and live your life to the fullest!!! Jesus is risen and we have hope – in heaven we won’t have this illness anymore!!! Praise God!!!

  • annette cwik

    i think this whole thing is silly.

  • riva

    As a type 1 for 38 years I understand the cry of type 1s that no one understands how hard and intense it is to live with this disease, and that we all group under the same umbrella of those lazy, fat type 2s who did it to themselves.

    Yes, many type 2s engaged in poor health habits that may have led to their diagnosis, but not all. One in five are slim actually. For some the genetic component is so strong they would have gotten it regardless of their actions. And there must certainly be type 2s who are annoyed with the bad press their own brothers and sisters bring them.

    But one diabetes being worse than the other? It’s all a matter of perspective. I wrote a book recently, “50 Diabetes Myths That Can Ruin Your Life and the 50 Diabetes Truths That Can Save It” and the myth I always quote is, “Type 2 diabetes is not as serious as type 1.”

    It is one of my favorites, because the emotion runs so high and because the answer seems so obvious, but is not. Both are extremely serious because they can both lead to the same devastating complications. While type 1s will never get off their insulin, and endure more intense management, type 2s are asked to undertake preventive behavior, which anyone can tell you, is a bitch.

    Since most type 2s are diagnosed years after they have the illness, many already have complications by time they’re diagnosed. And while most type 1s will live with their illness longer than type 2s, many will also live more healthfully with it because they developed healthy habits earlier and they see more directly the positive result of healthy habits.

    When “What People with Type 1 Diabetes Can Learn from Type 2s,” appeared on Diabetes Health what incensed most readers was the cavalier notion that type 1s aren’t doing good enough, so obviously we could learn a thing or two from type 2s. That reeks of presumption and offends.

    We all have something of value to share from our experiences, and it’s up to us as individuals how we manage our diabetes. And, how we choose to see it – some see themselves as victims and only see hardship, others see diabetes as a welcome wake-up call and get healthier, and others see diabetes as a signal that life is precious and go about making the most of it.

    Since no one can argue with your experience, it’s foolish to throw rocks at someone else’s. And while personally, I would vote to change the names of type 1 and type 2 diabetes to better reflect the differences and educate the general public about the differences, when it comes to helping each other out, let’s not overlook that living with any chronic disease we share many similarities.

  • J.B.

    Type 1 Diabetes is more dangerous than Type 2.

  • J.B.

    Hey Rocky, what is a blood sugar dysfunction????

  • Wayne Howser

    I was diagnosed with Type 2 10-11 years ago and have controlled it with diet and medication over all the years with no problem, It is a minor inconvienience and just part of a daily routine. I have such compassion for those with Type 1 that I say a little prayer of thanksgivng each day that I have not progressed to Type 1. The fine line of discipline they have to walk each day of their life is unbelieveable and tortuous and would not be wished unpon anyone. I have no conflict with them,only sypmathy and respect.

  • Skip

    I am a type 2 diabetic. I never had a weight problem,always ate healthy and have always excercised.(I had run several marathons)prior to my diabetes diagnosis at age 50. No one in my family has ever been diagnosed with either type diabetes.
    Botton line, diabetes is a difficult disease that can hit anyone and any age. We all need to work together to find a cure and rid our culture of this awful disease.

  • Cary Hocker

    I am a type 1, and don’t even bother with most articles on “Diabetes” because they are either unfocused or focused exclusively on Type 2. I am fed up with with the lack of clarity – I wish each disease would be given a unique name. I bear no ill will towards Type 2s, I just don’t want to waste my time reading an article that purportedly is about “Diabetes” but is actually only about Type 2.

  • Lorrie

    I have been type 1 for 16 years & have endured many health issuses. And I have taken pretty good care of myself , had good docs & now have the pump for 3 years. My issuses are that every year I do a walk in hopes to help fund for type 1. We are NOT getting the funding needed for research. There is no reason to tip toe around it. We need more funding. We need to contact our local & state government officials and get them to support Type 1 diabetes research. I completely understand type 2. My mother has it. But thank goodness they are doing well with their funding. And no obesity is not always the “cause” of it but it honestly in quite a few cases if the patient has the ability to loose weight it can help. Just like a type 1 keeping their A1C under 6 helping their health. It is all realtive. We do need to work together. I think it would be nice if the government would share the funding, maybe that would help bridge the gap!

  • Scott

    type 2 diabetics have a condition they have to live with. I have type 1 for 32 years. I follow my pattern, and have learned. One major thing that I have noticed is how unknowledgeable people with both type 1 and 2 are. they are 2 different conditions, the main similarity is problems from blood sugar. (blindness, kidney, neuropathy, etc.)
    everything else is different. One thing that I find very interesting, is that type 2 think they will become type 1, (which they never will (unless certain conditions)) The one thing I find is that most people with type 1 and 2 have very little knowledge about the other. type 1 is tough, but it can be under control. type 2 is not as tough, but it also can be controlled. So all in all, if you have diabetes 1 or 2, take care of it and do what your body needs, don’t whine about the other, their life has no meaning on yours.

  • Karen Dailey

    Who would choose to have diabetes? No-one. I have had Type 1 diabetes for 32 years and a day has not gone by that I wish I did not have it. Diabetes, type 1 or 2 is not something that someone does to themselves, it is what your body does to you.(it is how we where made) I pray for a cure for diabetes and also hope daily that my children do not have to add this to their list of daily battles that they have to fight. Instead of arguing, use your energy to educate others and find a cure. I use my energy to educate patients and staff daily where I work and I feel that I have made a difference. Because of my determination to to see my children grow and to one day see my grandchildren my plan is to continue to care for myself daily the best that I can.

  • Jil Olechno

    I am 80 years young and have been a Type 1 diabetic since the age of 18. I originally coped with shots but became one of the first users of the insulin pump, which of course made all the difference to my life. I have one son who is now my caregiver (my husband is 90 and is in a nursing home). My life has not been easy, but I never let the diabetes run it. I reached the top of my profession. It can be done

  • Scott Olbin

    I think we both have it bad. I am a type 1 for 20 years and haved lived trying to figure out this disease and it’s ups and downs. All I can say is I wish I were a type 2 not on insulin but oral meds only. It is far easier than basal/bolus shots all day long and 5-10 pricks a day on your fingers to try and get your readings figured out.

    I would say to all type 2’s to stay healthy, exercise, get weight within normal, and eat healthy. You DO NO want to be taking 4-6 shots per day as your stomach looks like a butcher shop, your feet hurt, eye problems, kidney, liver, you name can go wrong. Take care of yourself and stay off insulin if possible. I could not and have been on shots/pump for 20 years. My brother is 57 and been on shots/pumps for 51 years. Try having to boil needles, that’s what he did for many years. Take care, stay healthy.

  • Don

    I take medication twice a day, shots three times a day, every day. I have had high blood sugar and low blood sugar. I have passed out due to low blood sugar and woke up to EMT’s standing over me. I’ve had a stroke, bypass surgery and eye surgery. All this is due to my being a diabetic. I’m a Type 2 diabetic but still, I’m a diabetic. I have been very sports active all my life and one day I was told I had diabetes and my life turned up side down. I’ve learned to live with it and control it as best I can, but I’m still a diabetic. I keep my life under control through education on diabetes, watching my diet, medication and exercise. As with everyone else with this problem, I did not ask for it. I received this burden through genes someplace in my family history. We need to look at the whole picture and not pick sides about who has it worse.

  • Rich F

    I was diagnosed with and treated as a type 2 even though I had an atypical profile. I struggled controlling the disease which made more sense once I was diagnosed as LADA Type 1 although didnt alleviate the frustration of the prior years. Chronic disease is a tough road regardless of the disease or the Type–the one positive is that it makes you conscientious of your health and value your time. For what it is worth, I started using a CGM in the past few weeks, and believe this will greatly improve my quality of life. Other than that, every day is a challenge but it is what it is so I am working hard on the things I can change instead of the ones I can not. And it’s good to know I am not alone.

  • Skip

    Per posting above….please be aware that many Type 2 diabetes are also on insulin(myself) although granted only 1 shot per day. Not trying to compare but many folks forget that type 2 diabetes does include insulin dependent users as well.

  • LD

    David Spero,

    Your comment from your Blog entry Type 1 v Type 2, 4/28/10 *(See also the opposition to immigration from some working class Americans, who fear the competition for jobs. In a way, perhaps this Type 1/Type 2 divide is similar.)* is a bit misleading as is most talk about the ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION topic. If you make a statement blanketing an issue which is clearly two subpoints enclosed in a point ie: (Legal v Illegal Immigration, please specify that so folks do not get the wrong understanding. I believe the major problem most of the Legal United States Citizens have, is with the ILLEGAL Immigrants coming here & staying here in the USA, stealing the available jobs, milking the education, financial support & healthcare systems as well as overcrowding our jails & prisons. For the Legal immigrants there is NO animosity because they are playing by the rules and are welcome.

    As for the Diabetes debate (Type 1 v Type 2), it would certainly be nice when the journalists reported stories, they would specify they type they are referring to, because in general society does not understand what Diabetes is…I know I didn’t until I was diagnosed at 17 with Type 1 (900 mg/dl). I was walking around as a normal functioning person and still am physically fit, in great shape (outside of having diabetes), so Nobody would ever think that I had a disability like diabetes just by looking at me. I think that most of society views people with Diabetes as over weight, out of shape, etc. I don’t like to generalize so I wont, but as with any disease it affects people of all shapes, sizes, ethnicities, income levels, etc, so the infighting between Type 1s & Type 2s should cease & desist, but we are dealing with human nature and changing that will more than likely take some time. Just look at our government & political system…they still operate the way the always have so they really don’t advance too far too fast, taking baby steps. (DWYAD GWYAG) I’ve never been a believer in baby steps outside of a baby taking them, because they do have to learn to walk. But for adults to take baby steps in learning how to communicate with one another or within a corporation, etc, I think it is the most idiotic thing ever.
    AND Funding needs to focus on a cure for this disease because not even the doctors were able to tell me why all of a sudden at 17 I was diagnosed with diabetes. I would figure it was something genetic, but who knows? Not the medical professionals 🙂

  • Jennifer

    I have to put my two cents worth in here after reading this interesting discussion.

    When I was diagnosed as having type 2 diabetes about 17 years ago now, I had a doctor who didn’t really know what to do after diagnosing me. He just told me to follow a diet, buy a meter, and get some exercise, and I did. But in the meantime, I was having skin infections both in my legs and feet, and many urinary tract infections, all from untreated diabetes. My blood sugars were in the 200’s mostly, so with him not doing anything about pill therapy, I went elsewhere. The new doctor automatically had me on three different oral medicines and brought my sugars under good control, that is, until about three years ago, my sugars became completely out of control in spite of pills, weight loss and everything, so the next big step was insulin injections.

    I take both basal insulin and rapid acting insulin four times a day now. I could NOT do without it and believe that if I would quit taking insulin, I would slowly die of complications. I test at least 4 times daily, watch what I eat and keep track of my weight. I also exercise.

    Diabetes is diabetes, folks. Why should you call type 2 diabetes something different? Blood sugar that is way above and byond the normal range is diabetes reguardless of what anyone says. When I refer to myself, I say I have diabetes, not type 2 diabetes. When you tell people you have type 2 diabetes and you take insulin shots, the response I have gotten is usually, ” Type 2 and insulin? No, you must have type 1. ” I got sick of hearing that so I simply say I have diabetes and that way I don’t get the argument.

    I’ve noticed that many type 2’s like myself take insulin on this booard. I believe that type 2 is progressive in many cases, and that there usually reaches a point where insulin is badly needed.

    It is ALL serious, type 1, type 2, and type 1.5! I sure resent people that poo-poo it and say, “type 2 diabetes? Oh, that’s nothing!” And my response is to argue and say, “Yes, it is something. I’ve known people with type 2 with neuropathy and who lost the use of their kidneys and are now on dialysis. Don’t tell me it’s nothing!

  • Dottie

    Type 1, type 2. Who cares? Both have a 24-7 condition. I have been a Type 1 for 47 yrs. It is a full-time job to keep my weight down and stay a low A1C.

    I am also a stage 2 cancer survivor. Does that make me different from a stage 1 or stage 3 survivor? Not really. We’ve all been dealt a tough hand.

    I have friends with type 2 who are healthy and in good shape. I also have friends who have survived stage 4 cancers.

    None of us deserve these diseases. But, we got them. Some type 2’s can do well with diet and excerise, some cannot. Diabetes stinks no matter what number you have.

  • Fran

    In reading the various comments it seems that the Type 2’s out weigh the type 1’s. I’ve been a type 1 for the past 34 years and I did not develop it until I was in my 30’s. It was diagnosed 1 year and 2 months after my daughter was born and had 6 months of colic. That was the most stressful time of my life.
    Now you say type 1 and 2’s cannot learn from each other. I disagree because when AOL had their diabetes board, granted most of the ‘writers’ were type 2’s, I learned a lot about what I should have been doing all along. Such things as no white foods, watch the kinds of veggies as well as the kinds of fruits one eats. Keep track of your carbs and test, test, and test some more. Something that looks good at that 2 hr check may be sending your BG sky high at the 3 or 5 hour point. Yes, we can learn from each other. I have a friend who is t2 and she relies on my suggestions when we eat out. If she has ordered before we get there, she ends up ‘paying for it’ 2 to 4 hours later. We all need to keep our BG’s in check so that complications do not occur and they can happen to either type.
    Type 2 is considered an older person’s version of diabetes hence the feeling that they have ‘done it to themselves’. But now we are seeing a lot of young and mid-age people with diabetes. Good luck to all of those with this ailment and may we all pull together to better understand what we have to do to keep outselves out of complications.

  • Rich

    I have had type 2 diabetes since 1994. The VA attributes the problem to eposure to Agent Orange in Vietnam. As the only person in my fanily with the disease, I have no reason to doubt their conclusion.
    I strive to be a compliant patient, have lost 30 lbs and monitor my bood sugar. Thanks to aggressive medical intervention, I seem to be surviving, and have been able to take periotic breakes from my diet. I feel very fortiunate.
    The few Type 1 diabetics whom I know have it much more difficult that I do, at least that is the impression I get from our conversations. Their treatment seems to be very regimental and leaves little room for laxity.
    However, I beliveve that whole idea of jealosy or envy foolish. And who really cares what the diagnos on a persons death certificate?
    We all die of something, and I can not think of any cause of death that is worthy envy.

  • Maureen

    I haven’t seen or heard any conflict like these. I sometimes do get frustrated because I am looking for information on my type and don’t get anywhere. I’m sure there are other medical inquiries in which people look for infomation and don’t get what they are looking for. Nothing to begrudge what is published about other problems. Same here. This is nothing to be fighting about or blaming the other type. Every illness is different, even within each type. You need to work with your healthcare professional and learn the diabetes for yourself. And I can’t pity myself and say that mine is harder or worse than yours. It is all hard to deal with!

  • Lynn Coleman

    I have daughter that was taken to the hospital at age 12 and diagnosed with Diabetes. She immediately needed insulin so they said type 1. Then the antibodies didn’t show in the lab results said so the said type 2 (which meant she didn’t get some of the medical benefits that type 1 did) So we entered her in a type 2 study and she was rejected because they said their lab showed antibodies. She was back to being type 1. Through this entire time she had to test 4 times a day and take insulin. I am a nurse and since this experience my position has become that they should have diabetes with degrees attached. If you are a burn victim you classify your burn by degrees. A fourth degree diabetic could be someone with diabetes that can’t live without insulin shots whereas a first degree diabetic could be one that they now call “pre diabetic” (showing signs of insulin resistance but normal a1c) 2nd and 3rd degree cove the variations in between. The best thing this would do is unit diabetics and there is strength in numbers. We could all work on finding a CURE!!

  • Hali Danz

    Let’s cure them both and end the debate!

  • David


    I believe some people here have too much time on their hands…Type 1 or Type 2…Still Diabetes…Still a disease..I am a Type 1, BTW…


  • Ronda Werner

    I was diagnosed as a Type 2 diabetic several years ago. I am 5’2″ tall and weigh 118 pounds. I am definitely not overweight. Diabetes runs in both sides of my family. I was caught totally by surprise when I was diagnosed. My doctor told me that he was too busy to talk to me about the disease and prescribed an older medication for lowering my blood sugar and a meter, without explanation. It resulted in many low blood sugars (once while I was driving). I am currently maxed out on my medications. I exercise and try to watch my diet, although I confess that it gets trying at times. I probably don’t check my blood sugars enough. Diabetes is a chronic disease for both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetics. Let us respect each other and try to understand what each person is going through. United, hopefully, a cure with be found.

  • Southern Girl

    WAIT, HOLD THE PHONE….. Please folks, we are all in this together. Why are we fighting within the ranks of sisters and brothers with the same “sickness”. I have been a type 2 diabetes for 25 years(knowingly) and more not knowing that I had it. I applaud all of you that have it, admit it, try to take care of yourselves. That of course is the 1st step. But getting together whether on line, face to face, phone to phone, or what ever to have “positive” feed back is soooo important, whether you have type 1 or 2. We all have to fight the fight. I think that type 2 gets more “press” than type 1 because more and more folks are discovering that they have it and are surprised. Maybe its because of lack of education concerning this. The first time I ever heard about it was when I was about 6 or 7 years old and an elderly friend of the family, had it and was giving herself shots. I was so scared, but still was not educated about it. Not until the birth of my 2ND child. She is now 24 and not only am I educated about this but my daughter, my husband, and my son are walking around with eyes wide open as well as our ears, sharing information. My mother died from complications of this terrible thing. My son is now in medicine because of this nasty thing. Please,lets be each others “YES YOU CAN” Buddy. God knows we all need it. Southern Girl from NC

  • misskitty3

    I agree w/ Rocky about the blood sugar dysfunction but I’d use another woord. When I retrive the word fm my gray matter, this blog will hear it.
    Also agree w/ Rocky on the pigeonhole mentality. On 1 of the various diabetic websites I log onto,
    talks about “I am a diabetic meaning the disease defines who I am” versus “I am a person w/diabetes” PWD.
    Also agree with the cliche:”Are you part of the problem or part of the solution? That’s where the focus should be.Both T1 & T2 can benefit from the question.

  • David in Arizona

    As a parent of a child with Type 1, I’m hypersensitive about the association with Type 2. Both my dad and mother in law have Type 2…both have decades-long histories of high cholesterol, high tryglicerides, excess weight and inactivity. Yes they are genetically predisposed to Type 2, but their secondary — and entirely behavior based — health issues flicked the switch on their type 2. Had they eaten well, maintained a healthy weight, and exercised regularly, the switch stays off (at least for them).

    I understand that not all type 2 cases are lifestyle driven. But MOST ARE.

    I think the epidemic of type 2 has diverted research dollars, resources and political will away from type 1. We already have effective treatments for type 2 — significant weight loss, drastic dietary change, and regular exercise.

    I think it’s time we came up with a different name for Type 1 to better differentiate the stark differences in these two diseases. I live in fear that someday some jerk is going to tell my daughter that it’s her fault she has type 1. I only hope I’m not in ear-shot when it happens.

  • Eileen

    I have been a type 1 diabetic for 42 years and an x-ray technologist for 36 years. While I agree with the person that says some obese people never get diabetes I also have seen an outstanding number of people with type 2 diabetes that come in for an x-ray of feet, toes, kidneys and hearts because they’re going to loose them because they have never followed their doctors advice at all. I think there are plenty of type 2 diabetics that don’t care at all, but, they are not the ones in this debate because they wouldn’t put that much time into the disease. I do think that type 2 is getting way too much of the experts attention lately, but it doesn’t effect my taking care of myself so all I can say is hopefully it will pass.

  • Natalie Sera

    I’m a type 2, and when I was diagnosed, I lost 15% of my body weight, bringing me down to a BMI of 25.1, which is still technically overweight, but just barely.

    Didn’t do a thing to lower my BGs, even though the “experts” tell you that losing 5% to 10% of your body weight can make diabetes either get a lot better or go away completely.

    Only insulin helped me get my BGs into an acceptable but still not normal range. And I do the same kind of insulin routines as Type 1’s do — I test and I count my carbs, and I carry hard candy in case of a low. I have had a low of 31, but was lucky enough to be able to treat it. Other times, I have not had the presence of mind to treat lows, and have needed other people to help.

    I have also had a coma brought on by high BGs — it was slower to come on, but still, I almost died. When my friends found me and got me to the emergency room, my BP was 73/52 and my kidneys had failed. If they hadn’t come to check on me, I wouldn’t have lasted till morning.

    I do have metabolic syndrome, but again, it’s genetic, and not caused by weight. That’s why there are “metabolically obese” thin people. As well as metabolically healthy fat people.

    I really resent Type 1’s categorizing Type 2’s as lazy gluttonous slobs who brought it on themselves. Type 2 is MORE genetically based than Type 1 is.

    I’ve had diabetes for 19 years now, and I’ve met and read blogs and posts from many Type 1’s and Type 2’s and no one can convince me that one has it harder than the other — diabetes sucks, no matter what type you have!

    Natalie ._c-

  • Pat Weiser

    The very first comment made me angry. Yes, I have passed out at night due to low blood sugar, and have had many, many scares of ‘lows’. I am ‘brittle’ and fluctuate between highs and lows no matter how often I test and how careful I am with my insulin injections and eating. I’m talking 40 to 400 in a few hours time. I resent being blamed for contracting this disease. Mine was precipitated by having my gall bladder removed, and I was hypoglycemic for years before. Also, many members of my family were diabetic. My diabetes is just as difficult to live with as any Type 1. I’ve had my eyes ‘nuked’, and I have beginning neuropathy. Please don’t tell me my disease is not as bad as your disease. It is an unpleasant full time job for anyone that has it.

  • Jason

    Type 2s need to get real. Almost all of the terrible complications they could face are completely avoidable for the vast majority of type 2s. They can take days, weeks, even months off of their “regimen” with little or no effect. Type 1s face ALL of those complications, in addition to the fact that if they take a week off, THEY WILL DIE. Type 1 is a daily trial of endurance to prolong your life. Type 2 is an exercise in lifestyle management.

    I find it laughable that anyone would classify type 2 as serious as type 1 when the vast majority of type 2 complications arise DIRECTLY from their inability or unwillingness to address or modify their behavior and personal habits. Their actions dictate the disease they experience. Type 1s wish they were so lucky.

  • jim snell

    While I respect Jason’s frustrations, while the immediacy of the affect of insulin not working correctly, missing etc does mean that a Type 1 has to take care immediatly while the type 2 limps to the dying line demonstrating the overall resiliency of the human body, the rant against type 2 is none the less no more fair, appropriate nor helpful.

    Type 1 and 2 both suffer from excess glucose in the blood system. For a type 2 the apparent appearance of light symptons lulls both the research and the cure and care approaches to assume Type 2 is not serious.

    The cheap shot that this is all life style issues is in a word ludicrous.

    The human digestive system is a complex organ multi-organ and hormone system that requires a quilt work of tuning and work to bring back into proper running mode.

    For me, my glucose control was abysmal until metformin was finally released in late 1990’s with the idiotic theories of operation that the research work has finally been and released in 2013 on how metformin actually stops excess liver glucose release during fasting. During this last 13 years we have had all sorts misplaced ignoring of the liver’s role in creating this mess and denying liver leaks.

    Using metformin, I was finally able to arrest the liver action so that proper diet and sufficient exercise could finish that job of stopping the type 2 diabetes. It must clearly be pointed out that the 1200 calorie diet and exercise were/are in use 2 years and the only item that helped arresr the mes was the metformin. During 2 years before I got the liver arrested, I gained weight on this tight diet – no sweat. AFter liver arrested, weight dropped, A1c dropped from 13.3 to 6.4, hemorages dropped off the eyes, actos turfed, glyburide/stralix booted, 75/25 dropped from 26 units and swapped to humalog lispro and small doses under 2 units as well as lantus stopped.

    Let me say quite conclusively, I am most thankful for the disciplines on diet/eating, insulin developments and all the work done one Type 1 diabetes that has helped advance the cause.
    Types 1’s had to learn and be trained on this immediatly as the history clearly shows here is where the inital work went on to save type 1 ‘s lives.

    Along the way, the one thing that helped me before the metformin dosing and results was the use of insulin where one could quickly and easily control diet versus insulin needed. The oral pills – starlix and glyburide ( 10.5 hour lasting time per pill) means one has to eat to keep the pill and possible lows under control. Shere idiocy. Gee thanks.

    Blaming everything on life style is a cheap useless shot achieving nothing in stopping the type 2 diabetes explosion in numbers world wide.

    In this world of 24/7 availability of high quality refined grains, food stuffs and high fructose corn sugars made for pennies on the ton placed on an ancient digestive system that has been clearly mostly unmodified to survive in a world of excess rather than being optimized for starvation and poor food stuffs and intermittent supply.

    Yes, we need to ensure we are making best advantage and use of the science from Type 1 Diabetes. AFter that we need to start doing proper science in how the rest of the body works and how type 2 diabetes actually operates. Not this stupid idea that your problem is all life style and all that we have to do is add more insulin or actos to force more glucose into the skeletal muscles that are saturated and loaded to the gunnels.

    Its time to move beyond the simplistic three organ model of stomach, pancreas and blood system while the liver, kidneys, thyroid,skeletal muscles and their fifo buffers simply do not count – couldn’t possibly be an issue.

    Trying to solve this problem with a caveman fingerprick glucose meter and Merlin’s magic wand does not cut it in this man’s books.

  • Nick

    Having type 1 diabetes I face this dilemma frequently. Scientific illiteracy and ignorance are rampant epidemics in America. Many people have confronted me telling me I need to do this and that to cure my diabetes-most of their suggestions stem from type 2 diabetes. It can become tiring to be a constant educator especially to those who are dishing out flak because of your ‘lackadaisical’ lifestyle.
    Also, lets be real, type 1 is a more severe disease than type 2-or at least has the potential to be. It can be belittling to constantly hear that “you’re lazy” or “don’t have a good diet” or “you can fix that” when the best you can do is good control through vigilance.
    Type 2 is what culture hears and type 1 lives in its shadow.
    It is sort of like someone of Japanese descent being called out on being Chinese because someone doesn’t know or can’t tell the difference.

    It stems from a lack of education. People don’t know the difference.