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What is insulin-dependent diabetes?

Laura Motosko, MSEd, RD
Nutrition & Dietetics

Insulin dependent diabetes is often referred to type 1 diabetes. It means that your pancreas does not produce enough insulin to use the glucose in your blood for energy. Insulin is than required to be injected into your body to promote healthy blood glucose levels. 

Jessica Crandall
Nutrition & Dietetics

Insulin-dependent diabetes, which is referred to as Type I Diabetes Mellitus is characterized by the pancreas not producing enough insulin secondary to decreased beta cell function. People who are diagnosed with Type I Diabetes need to take insulin by injection to survive to avoid high blood sugars. Many people with Type I Diabetes are on what's referred to as a basal/bolus system with insulin injections. This means they take an insulin injection before meals (to cover meal) and before bedtime (long-acting) to keep their blood sugars in good control. Insulin's main function is to unlock our cells to let in the glucose that is running around in our blood stream to give us energy. Dietary sources of carbohydrates break down into glucose in our body and insulin is needed to put this energy from glucose into our cells for the energy that we need. It's important for all Type I Diabetes to see a Registered Dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator for education with medications and for nutritional counseling focusing on carbohydrate counting.

Toby Smithson
Nutrition & Dietetics
Insulin dependent and juvenile diabetes are older terms and now is called Type 1 diabetes. It is when a person's pancreas does not secrete any insulin due to Beta cell destruction. Insulin cannot be taken by mouth or in a pill form and needs to be injected.
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
Insulin-dependent diabetes and juvenile diabetes are names formerly used for  type 1 diabetes. Watch the video to learn more about type 1 diabetes.


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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.