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Causes Of Double Diabetes

The causes of double diabetes are not completely known. We do know that one of the important factors is excessive weight gain. Why? Weight gain causes insulin resistance, and that's what seems to push a person with type 1 diabetes into the double diabetes category. A person's family genes are also likely to be a factor. People with type 1 and a family history of type 2 are more likely to develop insulin resistance if they gain excessive weight. A person's ethnic and racial background counts too – people of ethnic racial minorities are more likely to develop insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes.

The Accelerator Hypothesis: A New Theory on the Role of Weight in Type 1 Diabetes

The overall increase in insulin resistance due to obesity is blurring the lines that usually distinguish type 1diabetes from type 2 diabetes.

According to the "accelerator hypothesis" of diabetes development, the increase in the frequency of type 1 diabetes seen in young children is due to excessive weight gain and the development of insulin resistance, a phenomenon we usually associate with type 2 diabetes.

Insulin resistance puts the beta cells under stress by forcing them to manufacture more and more insulin. Stressed beta cells are more likely to experience autoimmune injury (damage that happens when the body's immune system cells attack other cells), which can lead to these cells being destroyed and to the development of type 1 diabetes in a person who is already genetically at risk.

This suggests that weight gain can accelerate the development of type 1 in people who might get it later in life if they had maintained a healthy weight. Obesity and insulin resistance might also partially explain why there is an increase in the total number of cases of type 1 diabetes. It is possible that excess weight can push the immune system to destroy the insulin-producing cells of the pancreas when that might not have occurred without the excess weight.

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Last Updated: Saturday April 20, 2013 13:31:34
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