Spreading the Word: the Warning Signs of Type 1 Diabetes on Sports Talk Radio


Editor’s Note: Knowing the warning signs of diabetes saves lives. Help us spread the word.

Recently, Beyond Type 1 board member Nate Checketts and long-time advocate Liddy Huntsman were on ESPN700—Utah’s #1 Sports Talk Radio—to discuss the warning signs of type 1 diabetes (T1D), as well as their personal experience living with T1D.

Below, listen to their chat and learn more about the warning signs of type 1 diabetes, including how you can spread the word to save lives (their interview begins at 37 seconds):

We loved these quotes from Liddy and Nate’s interview

“…the warning signs of type 1 can be mistaken so often for the flu. Especially right now with COVID, everyone is having similar symptoms to what the [T1D] warning signs are—extreme thirst, having to go to the bathroom, being extremely tired, losing weight… I just think it’s so important that everybody knows the signs, because that’s really what saved my life in the beginning, a family friend recognized symptoms, and that’s really what got me into the doctor’s office.—Liddy

“A lot of people have heard of juvenile diabetes. One of the reasons why we no longer call it juvenile diabetes is because it’s happening more and more to adults, equally as much to adults as to children… It’s so easy to get checked. All it takes is a finger stick to check the signs. It’s not overly complicated, but people do need to know the warning signs as Liddy said, because this is a disease that unfortunately we lose people. People die because they just don’t get diagnosed in time and their blood sugars build and they go into what’s called DKA or diabetic ketoacidosis.”—Nate

Learn more about the warning signs of type 1 diabetes

Recognizing the symptoms of type 1 diabetes is critical. Although type 1 develops gradually, as the body’s insulin production decreases, blood glucose levels can become dangerously high once insulin production is outpaced. Symptoms may develop rapidly and can be mistaken for other illnesses such as the flu and a delayed diagnosis can have serious consequences.

Many people are familiar with type 2 diabetes, but there is not enough awareness of type 1. Learn about other forms of diabetes.

Who gets type 1?

Anyone, at any age, can be diagnosed with type 1 diabetes—it is neither preventable nor curable. While the cause is unknown, studies prove that genes together with an environmental trigger result in the immune system turning on itself and destroying the body’s beta cells.

Early symptoms of type 1 diabetes

  • unquenchable thirst
  • frequent urination
    • in babies and toddlers, heavy diapers
    • in children with no previous concerns, sudden bedwetting
  • weight loss (despite an increased appetite)
  • exhaustion and decreased energy levels
  • blurry vision
  • a fruity smell to the breath

More advanced symptoms

  • stomach pain
  • fatigue or weakness
  • nausea or vomiting
  • rapid, heavy breathing
  • loss of consciousness

What to do

If you recognize any of the symptoms, contact your doctor immediately. A simple in-office test for sugar in the urine is used for diagnosis. If that test is positive, then a drop of blood from the fingertip will confirm diabetes. Every day, thousands of adults and children around the world are diagnosed, but many go undetected. Early diagnosis cannot prevent type 1, but it can head off potentially devastating, and even fatal, health concerns.