Through our research, we have heard from many families who talk about the stigma around type 1 diabetes (T1D). Both parents and kids have stories about friends and relatives who do not understand the differences between type 1 and type 2 diabetes, often making comments about how the child will ‘just grow out of it’ or ‘if you just feed your child healthier food, they will get better.’

The stories from the T1D families we have met through our research inspired the collaboration between the MyT1DHero team and WKAR to produce videos that aim to spread awareness about type 1 diabetes. Two videos will air on TV this month on the PBS Family channel. For World Diabetes Day, we are announcing the next video that can be watched below.

T1D is an autoimmune disease in which a person’s pancreas stops producing insulin. Insulin helps the body get energy from the food that we eat. Individuals with T1D do not make their own insulin, so they must regularly monitor their blood sugar and balance their insulin doses with eating and exercise.

Importantly, T1D has nothing to do with diet or lifestyle. Instead, scientists believe that genetic and environmental factors are the major causes of T1D. Unfortunately, there is nothing that can be done to prevent T1D and there is no cure.