Why Do We Celebrate World Diabetes Day?

Happy World Diabetes Day!!!

{Even though I wish I didn’t have say that}

November 14th — Today is World Diabetes Day! {Yay, no longer “National” Diabetes Day}

World Diabetes Day is a day to address issues facing the global diabetes community. It is also is Sir Frederick Banting’s birthday. In case you’re not familiar, Banting and his assistant Charles Best co-discovered insulin in the 1920’s. They were both extremely important pioneers in early diabetes research.

Here is a little blurb from the achieves to make you more familiar with their research:

Until the discovery of insulin, diabetes was a feared children’s disease that would most certainly lead to death within a year (Wright 1391). Doctors would put their patients on low calorie diets of as little of 450 calories per day to prolong their lives. Because of prolonged and elevated blood sugar levels, patients would become restless and eventually die in a deep diabetic coma.

In 1921, a young surgeon named Frederick Banting and his assistant Charles Best began to experiment theories by removing the pancreas of a dog. The dog had developed diabetes, which resulted in its blood sugar level to rise. The dog had become thirsty, urinated more often and all together became weaker because of its high blood glucose level (Wright 1391-2). Testing on another dog, they were able to remove the pancreas and use it for testing purposes. They came up with a new extract substance of water and salts called “isletin” and injected into the diabetic dog. Because of the extract, the blood glucose level of the dog had dropped, and it started to get stronger. By giving the diabetic dog a few injections a day, they could keep it healthy and free of symptoms of high blood sugar.

The first human subject to receive insulin was a 14-year-old boy who was severely malnourished. He was near his death; only weighing 65 pounds, and his hair was falling out. He spoke very slowly and did nothing but lay around all day. Within two weeks of being on continuous insulin injections, the boy was “brighter, more active, looked better and said he felt better” (Wright 1396). Seven patients were treated in this initial study, and they all showed signs of improvement after countless insulin injections.

JDRF funds innovators just like Frederick Banting, who dedicate their work to creating a world without T1D… That is why your donations are so important. I am part of the JDRF family, and will continue to spread the word.

#T1DLooksLikeMe | Calla Michalski | Blog at www.IAmAType1Diabetic.comJDRF has been using the hashtag #T1DLooksLikeMe all month long to keep spreading the word! If you haven’t yet got your photo to raise awareness this month, click here.

One day, {hopefully soon!} all of this research may help to find a cure and make life easier for all of us. Watch this short {and very cute} video of a a little boy named Nasir explain in his own words how he hopes to end the constant burden for people living with T1D. He hopes to one day become a scientist to find a cure for the disease that affects him every day of his life.