Media and celebrities can help diabetes awareness and sometimes they can hurt it. We're all confused by Halle Barry, does she have type 1 diabetes or type 2? She says she has cured her diabetes but who really knows*? Nick Jonas has probably done more for type 1 diabetes in the last 8 years than any celebrity in the 20 years before.
I like Tom Hanks as an actor, we own several of his movies (even That Thing You Do!). Personally, I think he helped the public know that type 1 diabetes is different and more serious than type 2. Was it a little insulting when he said type 1 is SERIOUS and he doesn't have it**? Yes, of course it was insulting. But trying to explain to others that I have type 1 diabetes is hard. He just helped my explanation by 50%. He just announced to the world that type 1 is different and requires to be on insulin. I wish Tom well with his diagnosis and treatment.
*The only cure I know of right now for type 1 diabetes is pancreas islet cell transplant but it is very serious and isn't practical for most type 1 diabetics. Perhaps Halle Barry eats no carbs and so she doesn't need insulin?
**in case you didn't hear, Tom Hanks was on Late Night with David Letterman
"Hey, I don't have Type 1 diabetes! Type 1 diabetes is a really, really serious thing. I don't have that. I have high blood sugars and Type 2 diabetes is not going to kill me," explained Hanks. "But I just have to eat right, and exercise, and lose weight, and watch what I eat, and I will be fine for the rest of my life.
"Part of it's hereditary, without a doubt. I guess I just got it in me. But it's really about a lifestyle, man. ...I'm 57 years old and for the last 20 years I've been carrying around probably 15 or 20 extra pounds in my regular life. When I work, a lot of times I have to lose weight and I do that, but in my regular life I was not eating right, and I was not getting enough exercise. But by the nature of my diet and that lifestyle — boom!
"The end result was high blood sugars that reach the levels where it becomes Type 2 diabetes. I share that with a gajillion other people. The best thing you can do that for that and the thing that will completely negate its effects is eat right and lose weight. So that's all I'm doing."