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What is Diabetes 1.5?

author avatar Dr. Eric Berg 04/29/2024

Modern diets are increasingly composed of processed foods and sugar additives. This means that diabetes is only becoming more widespread, so understanding conditions like diabetes 1.5 is crucial.

Learn about diabetes 1.5, how it affects blood sugar levels, and what you can do to support your overall health.

Understanding Diabetes 1.5

You might have heard of type 1 and type 2 diabetes, but there's a less-known variant called diabetes 1.5, also known as LADA (Latent Autoimmune Diabetes in Adults). It's often misdiagnosed because it combines characteristics of both other types.

The Intersection of Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes

Diabetes 1.5 is composed of both the autoimmunity of type one diabetes and insulin resistance typical for type two.

Both these symptoms make it so many people with LADA are initially diagnosed with type-2 diabetes, only to find out later they need insulin therapy typically used for those with type-1.

It’s estimated that up to half of all adults diagnosed each year with non-obesity-related onset may have this form instead.

Signs and symptoms written on wood blocks

Identifying Symptoms of Diabetes 1.5

Diabetes 1.5 presents a unique blend of symptoms drawn from both type 1 and type 2 diabetes.

The common symptoms seen in adults include frequent urination, excessive thirst, unexplained weight loss or gain, fatigue, blurred vision, and slow-healing sores.

Common Symptoms in Adults

If you're an adult suspecting you might have this condition, look for sudden changes in your health that other factors can't explain. For example, even after adequate rest, persistent tiredness could indicate your body's struggle to use glucose efficiently for energy.

Or perhaps you have experienced an unusual increase or decrease in appetite accompanied by unexpected weight fluctuations. Both these phenomena are indications you may be suffering for diabetes 1.5.

Symptoms Seen in Children

In children with diabetes 1.5, the signs may differ slightly but are equally telling when diagnosing the condition early on.

A child might start showing indications like increased hunger (polyphagia), abnormal weight loss despite eating more (polydipsia), and a constant need to pee (polyuria).

This trio of polyphagia, polydipsia, and polyuria forms what medical experts often refer to as the diabetic triad, which points towards high blood sugar levels characteristic of all types of diabetes, including 1.5.

Diagnostic Tests for Diabetes 1.5

Suppose you have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes but are now requiring insulin. In that case, it is possible that you may be experiencing diabetes 1.5 and should seek medical advice to confirm this through autoantibody tests.

The most common way doctors distinguish between type 1, type 2, and diabetes 1.5 is through autoantibody tests. These blood tests look for specific antibodies that signal an autoimmune attack on the pancreas—something seen in both type 1 and diabetes 1.5.

Initial Diagnosis vs Long-term Observations

Your initial diagnosis isn't always your final answer regarding diabetes types.

A study found nearly 7% of adults diagnosed with type 2 had autoantibodies, indicating they were suffering from diabetes 1.5

This tells us that, over time, things can change drastically. So, if your treatment plan doesn’t seem right or symptoms persist despite medication, it's worth having your blood tested again.

Managing Diabetes 1.5 Through Nutrition and Supplementation

A proper, nutrient-rich meal plan offers much-needed support in managing diabetes 1.5.

The Power of Phytonutrients

Nature provides an array of weapons in the form of phytonutrients that pack a punch against diabetes complications. These are found in vegetables, nuts, and teas.

Phytonutrients don't just help you hit the high notes on your taste buds but also assist with maintaining blood sugar levels.

Beneficial Supplements for Diabetes 1.5

You might need some extra backup besides food to manage this condition effectively.

Vitamin D is like sunshine in a bottle for our bodies. It also helps keep bones strong and may improve insulin resistance. Ensure you get enough by soaking up sunlight or taking supplements if necessary.

Zinc plays an incredible role in inflammation, which is crucial for people with diabetes. So make sure you've got this mineral in your corner.

Benfotiamine is a fat-soluble form of vitamin B1 that can benefit nerve health, an area often affected by diabetes.

Finally, let's dive into nicotinamide. This supplement might just be what your insulin-producing cells need for protection.

Nutrition science illustration

Diet for Diabetes

A well-planned diet for diabetes is critical to managing the condition effectively.

While probiotics can offer potential benefits in supporting overall health for individuals with diabetes, it's crucial to emphasize dietary choices that help regulate blood sugar levels.

The best probiotic for diabetes may vary among individuals, but a diabetes-friendly diet typically revolves around balanced carbohydrate intake, portion control, and choosing foods with a low glycemic index.

Incorporating fiber-rich vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats can help stabilize blood sugar levels.

While probiotics can complement a diabetes diet by promoting gut health, it's essential to prioritize a well-rounded and diabetes-conscious dietary plan, working in consultation with a healthcare professional or registered dietitian for personalized guidance and support.


Since the prevalence of diabetes is on the rise, it is important to understand lesser-known variants such as diabetes 1.5. diabetes 1.5, or LADA.

Diabetes 1.5 presents a unique blend of symptoms from both type 1 and type 2 diabetes, often leading to misdiagnosis and delayed treatment.

Recognizing the symptoms, undergoing appropriate diagnostic tests, and implementing targeted management strategies, including nutrition and supplementation, are crucial steps in effectively managing diabetes 1.5 and promoting overall health.

By increasing awareness and adopting proactive approaches to diabetes care, you can take control of your health and well-being.

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