Type One Diabetics May Produce Some Insulin

type 1 diabetics insulinTraditional opinions surrounding Type 1 diabetes mostly concurred that those with the disease have no insulin production due to the destruction of specialized cells in the pancreas. This is the reason that those with Type 1 diabetes are so dependent on manufactured insulin medication—without insulin, their bodies are unable to process the glucose that so many foods are broken down into, with disastrous results to the body.

Recent research into the disease has attempted to find ways around this, from discovering ways to treat the auto-immune reaction in the body that causes the destruction to the pancreas to ways to replace the destroyed pancreas safely. However, some researchers have taken a new route in studying the way that the auto-immune disease actually affects the pancreas itself, and have discovered that, in some diabetics at least, the pancreas’ ability to produce insulin is not totally destroyed. This is a finding that may change the way that diabetics work with their preferred diabetic supply company, depending on further research.

Researchers discovered that in most diabetics, very small amounts of insulin are produced by the pancreas, and that the levels in the blood even respond to food intake. The authors stated, describing the conventional wisdom about the disease, “Type 1 diabetes is defined as a disease of progressive autoimmune destruction of beta cells, leading to absolute insulin deficiency.” Their findings, however, published in Diabetologia, shows that some beta cells either resist the immune attack or regenerate themselves over time. The study was massively assisted by new technology that can measure very minute concentrations of insulin in the blood. The revelation raises the question of whether or not treatments that can halt or reverse the damage that comes to those with Type 1 diabetes can be effectively created. This, of course, also leads to a discussion of the status of diabetic supply companies in a world where such treatments are possible.

Until such options are developed, of course, if they are possible, those with Type 1 diabetes must rely on their medications and careful monitoring of blood glucose levels. Of course, there is also the question of the extent to which the destruction can be halted or reversed in those whose immune systems have attacked their pancreas. For a long time into the future, there will still be a need for diabetic supply companies carrying the diabetic accessories that those with the disease need as part of their everyday life.  Even if some of the insulin-producing capabilities of the pancreas can be preserved or restored, there is still the possibility that those with the disease will remain partially dependent on supplemental insulin to manage their blood glucose levels. Certainly there will still be a need for blood glucose monitoring on some level, because there is the possibility that the auto-immune response may occur again in individuals who have experienced it once; it could lead to disaster if an individual who was declared “cured” of type one diabetes went on to re-develop it years later, with blood glucose levels unchecked in the body. Even with these provisos, however, the research is promising and could contribute greatly to future quality of life improvements for many diabetics.

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