What is Type 1 Diabetes?
Diabetes mellitus type 1 (also known as type 1 diabetes, or T1D; formerly known as insulin-dependent diabetes or juvenile diabetes) is a metabolic disease. It occurs when the immune system destroys beta cells in the pancreas. Beta cells produce a hormone called insulin. This hormone is needed to allow sugar (glucose) to enter cells in order to produce energy. Only 5% of people with diabetes have this form of the disease. Type 1 is more common among white people than in African Americans. Women and men are affected equally. Although the disease typically starts in individuals under the age of 20, it can occur at any stage of life.