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March 26, 2001

Research: Causes and Prevention

Question from Fort Drum, New York, USA:

I am an active duty US Army soldier who developed (presumably type 1) diabetes, about six months after my enlistment. I am in the combat field so my job often entails periods as long as two weeks in the woods doing training drills during which I would have no other food options except the Army rations, which are often packed with carbohydrates. Being 18 and having no family history of the disease, could my diabetes have been caused by anything the Army had subjected me to?

Answer:

I doubt that the Army had anything to do with your contracting type 1 diabetes. Also, the food is not likely a causative agent even with loads of carbohydrates.

SB