Type 1 diabetes
Type 1 diabetes occurs when the body is unable to produce insulin. Insulin is a hormone that's needed to control the amount of sugar (glucose) in your blood.
When you eat, your digestive system breaks down food and passes its nutrients including glucose into your bloodstream.
The pancreas (a small gland behind your stomach) usually produces insulin, which transfers any glucose out of your blood and into your cells, where it's converted to energy.
However, if you have type 1 diabetes, your pancreas is unable to produce any insulin (see below). This means that glucose can't be moved out of your bloodstream and into your cells.
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition. Your immune system (the body's natural defence against infection and illness) mistakes the cells in your pancreas as harmful and attacks them, destroying them completely or damaging them enough to stop them producing insulin.
It's not known exactly what triggers the immune system to do this, but some researchers have suggested that it may be due to a viral infection.
Type 1 diabetes is often inherited (runs in families), so the autoimmune reaction may also be genetic.
If you have a close relative such as a parent, brother or sister with type 1 diabetes, you have abouta 6% chance of also developing the condition. The risk for people who don't have a close relative with type 1 diabetes is just under 0.5%.
Type 1 diabetes is a chronic condition in which the pancreas produces little or no insulin. Insulin is a hormone needed to allow sugar (glucose) to enter cells to produce energy.
The symptoms of type 1 diabetes can develop very quickly (over a few days or weeks), particularly in children. In older adults, the symptoms can often take longer to develop (a few months).
It's important for diabetes to be diagnosed early so treatment can be started as soon as possible. If you experience the symptoms of diabetes , visit your GP as soon as possible. They'll ask about your symptoms and may request blood and urine tests.
If you have type 1 diabetes, you'll probably need insulin injections. Treatment for diabetes aims to keep your blood glucose levels as normal as possible and to control your symptoms.
If diabetes isn't treated, it can lead to a number of different health problems. High glucose levels can damage blood vessels, nerves and organs. Even a mildly raised glucose level that doesn'tcause any symptoms can have damaging effects in the long term.
If you have type 1 diabetes, you'll need to look after your health very carefully. You have to start eating a healthy balanced diet, exercise regularly, quit smoking, limit your alcohol, etc.
Type 1 diabetes occurs when the body is unable to produce insulin. Insulin is a hormone that is needed to control the amount of sugar (glucose) in your blood. Type 1 diabetes is often inherited (runs in families), so the autoimmune reaction may also be genetic.
Chandler Bennett was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in October 2004. She maintains a positive attitude to life and has learned to manage her condition.
Ivy Ashworth-Crees, 59, talks about how much better her life is since her double kidney and pancreas transplant.
Nurse consultant in diabetes, Grace Vanterpool MBE, talks about her work supporting people with diabetes and raising awareness of the condition.
Cricket star Wasim Akrams glittering career included dealing with numerous injuries, clearing his name after match-fixing allegations and coping with type 1 diabetes.