Problems with Halle Berry and her so-called diabetes

Yikes, Halle Berry has reared her kooky head twice in the past week for me.  The first time was at an Omnipod presentation when one of the attendees mentioned that Halle Berry had type 1 diabetes and the second time was at a JDRF walk dinner when some of the centerpieces had Halle as a celebrity with type 1. Two times in one week was too much for me so I thought I would rant a little.

What bugs me about Halle is that she does not have type 1 and apparently never did.  She has made statements about having diabetes but refuses to elaborate on specific aspects of her diabetes.  No one needs to talk about their diabetes if they don't want to.  But, Halle went around saying she had type 1 diabetes and that SHE CURED HERSELF through diet so that she no longer has to take insulin.  When someone says something as imflammatory as curing herself of diabetes then I think the privacy issue goes away.  She is on record as saying she cured herself of type 1 diabetes, no longer takes insulin, and considers herself a type 2. 

Of course that is pure nutty talk.  I wish she would be forthcoming and be truthful about her condition since her comments are so insensitive to all of us that live with type 1 diabetes.  Whether she was misdiagnosed initially as a type 1 or just lied about being a type 1 is known only to her and her doctors.  But, gosh I wish she would come clean after she said she cured herself and is no longer insulin-dependent.  Those are feuding words!  

Thanks for reading my rant.  Oh, and don't include Halle as a celebrity with type 1 diabetes!  Because she is not.

Here is one story about the matter.  Do a search and you will find lots more.

http://abcnews.go.com/Health/story?id=3822870&page=1

I think your observation is very interesting. When I first read about her declaration of curing herself, I just had to laugh a little. I do agree with you that she should not have to talk about it if she does not want to, but whoops… she already did. I know your feelings all too well. It becomes frustrating when what we live out daily with our precious children is to some degree trivialized by misrepresentation.

Wow, I had no idea about this.  I always thought she was Type 1 and wasn't aware of this controversy.  It's sad that it misinforms the public about the severity of Type 1-we already deal with so much ignorance about it, here is one more thing that people will believe without checking the facts first.  I can see how easily she could've been misdiagnosed-I was diagnosed in my senior year of HS and it took my doctors about 6 months of testing and trials to figure out what type I had. 

Saying that you have cured yourself is ignorant, and dangerous!

This is interesting. I don't know much about Halle Berry's claim to be diabetic or cured or any of that. But I can contribute a little confusion from my side of things.

I was diagnosed with Type 1 (quite dramatically, with a blood sugar of 1600) back in Jan 2008. Every hour since then, I've been on Novolog and Lantus. I see my endocrinologist regularly... and he LIKES to perform tests. One of his more recent tests (I'm not sure what the medical term for it is) shows that my pancreas is, in fact, producing a teensy weensy bit of insulin. Now, sure, I've been eating well and exercising regularly and all that... but my doctor told me from day 1 of my diagnosis, "You ARE and ALWAYS WILL BE diabetic." So the fact that my pancreas has somehow (remarkably) apparently *increased* its insulin output, is very unusual and confusing... enough so to make him really sit up and question whether I ought to be backing off some of my long-acting insulin.

Now, I'm the first to testify I'd be incredibly nervous to begin decreasing my doses. I check my sugar frequently, of course, and I've seen no evidence in my numbers that would lead me to believe I have any justification in doing so. It's been months already since I enjoyed the relative low-maintenance (albeit tremendously unpredictable) days of my long-endured "honeymoon phase". I'm also no doctor, and - as far as being an educated diabetic - I absolutely have a long way to go... but CAN the pancreas heal?

I'm not sure how this compares to what Halle Berry is claiming... but has anyone ever heard of a pancreas just - well - going "back to normal"?

The test was almost certainly measuring your c-peptide levels.  Insulin and c-peptide are linked together when it is produced by the pancreas.  Essentially, if you have c-peptide present then you are producing insulin.  Insulin you inject does not affect the results because it does not have c-peptides.  I don't know how much insulin production varies in someone with type 1 diabetes.  But studies have found that even people who have had diabetes for decades still may have some insulin production.  A study that got some press last year was one from Joslin out of Boston that showed that some type 1's with diabetes for more than 50 years still were capable of producing insulin.  That's great news because it has potential implications for a cure.  So, your pancreas may produce some insulin for many years.  Since you went through a honeymoon your beta cells snapped back into action after diagnosis.  And, I assume that over time they produced less insulin requiring more injectable insulin.  So, I would say that your insulin production has decreased rather than increased, which is the normal route almost everyone with type 1 follows.  

So, my answer to your question about whether the pancreas can heal is "no".  If you are accurately diagnosed with type 1 you may get a honeymoon but the pancreas won't fix itself.  Sorry, but you joined the club for life (or until there is a cure).  Welcome!  Of course I am only an honorary member since it is my son that has the diabetes.

Wow, that is a total lack of social responsibility. She needs to clear things up in the media. 

I'd just like to point out that diabetes has nothing to do with the pancreas being 'damaged', per se. The pancreas produces a wide variety of enzymes even in the body of a diabetic. Diabetes is actually an auto-immune disease (which I didn't realize until... well, a few years back). The body somehow (we're not sure how, yet) decides that the Islets of Langerhans (a cell in the pancreas) are detrimental to the body and the immune system attacks them. Most of the diabetes cures focus on tricking the immune system (transplanting a new pancreas or Islet cells), as opposed to actually 'fixing' the pancreas.

Halle Berry has MODY.  She was misdiagnosed with type 1 at an early age, then she was re-diagnosed with MODY.  I bet she tells people she's type 2 now because the average lay person has no idea what MODY is.

http://diabetesupdate.blogspot.com/2007/11/halle-berry-poster-girl-for-mody.html

It is somewhat appauling that she's never came out and made a public statement about this misunderstanding, though.

According to Halle, she was diagnosed with diabetes at age 23 (1989).   The website you link to is pure speculation about Halle's diabetes. The woman has no facts to base her comments about Halle on and Halle has not come clean about her reported diabetes.  Halle was on Inside the Actor's Studio in 2007 when she made her comments about going from type 1 to type 2.  To my knowledge she has not elaborated since then (making it impossible for someone to speculate that she was misdiagnosed with MODY).  She implies, if not out-right stating, in the interview with Liption that she weaned herself off insulin with diet and exercise (she states that she controls her diabetes currently through diet and exercise).  

She may have Type 1, she may have Type 2, she may have MODY, LADA, Flatbush disease, Type 1.5 or what ever new form of diabetes they come up with or that exists.  But, if she intends to be a spokesperson for diabetes causes then it would be appropriate for her to explain her situation.  It wouldn't be that hard.  Maybe if she did we could all have a better understanding of the different forms diabetes takes.

Here is the interview in which she makes the comments:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=amEM-geXY7o&feature=related

Well-founded speculation, in my opinion.  The facts she has are bona fide diagnostic criteria.  A normal weight person aged 22 who is placed on insulin to manage her blood sugars and later no longer requires it sounds exactly like one of those "new form of diabetes they come up with" as you so coolly refer to them as.

Diabetes does not fit into this neatly defined box that many people try to put it in.  I don't have GAD antibodies, yet I am stil on the same type of treatment as someone with autoimmune, type 1 diabetes mellitus.  Does that make me non-type 1 diabetic?  The multitude of disease states that fall under the umbrella of "diabetes" (which really is just a symptom when you study the etymology of the word) are so far stretching that it's hard for even health care specialists to keep up.

Listen to the nuances in her voice, "I like to put myself now in the type 2 diabetes category."  She isn't proclaiming "I USED TO HAVE TYPE 1 DIABETES AND NO LONGER NEED INSULIN ANYMORE; I NOW CONTROL MY TYPE 2 DIABETES WITH ONLY DIET AND EXERCISE AND YOU SHOULD DO THE SAME THING IF YOU'RE TYPE 1" like everybody is treating it. The short interview probably didn't allow her to give a full discourse stating all of the information (be it true or false information) she has been given by her doctors about her special case of diabetes.

Halle Berry obviously didn't go to medical school.  She definitely seems somewhat unaware of the different types of diabetes that are out there - just as much so as her doctors were, I assume.  Good for me, I don't turn to celebrities as my diabetes spokespeople; I'd rather listen to diabetes-related medical researchers and endocrinologists.  Yes, there is room for improvement in educating the public about type 1 diabetes... but, there is equally as much improvement needed in educating the public about other forms of diabetes and other non-diabetes related disease states as well.

HALLE BERRY IS RICH AND FAMOUS SO SHE HAS ACCESS TO A "CURE FOR TYPE 1 DIABETES". I BELIEVE THERE IS INDEED A CURE OUT THERE BUT PEOPLE DONT KNOW ABOUT IT.

...so since they don't want to put a patent on it and make BILLIONS of dollars by marketing it to the general population, they are only selling it to the rich and the famous?  That doesn't make sense.  What's in it for the scientist who has a cure for diabetes but doesn't let the public know about it?

There is no simple way to cure diabetes.  The JDRF has been working as hard as they can to find a cure for this disease, they contribute more research dollars than any organization (besides the US government itself) to finding a cure.  If it was easy, it would have been done by now and I would have already thrown my insulin vials at a brick wall.

THAT'S A GOOD QUESTION MY FRIEND. EVANS, THERE ARE HUGE COMPANY'S LIKE LILLY AND THE PEOPLE WHO MAKE INSULIN SUCH AS HUMALOG AND COUNTLESS OTHER COMPANY'S THAT ALREADY MAKE BILLIONS OFF PEOPLE LIKE YOU AND ME. NOW THEY WOULD BE OUT OF BUSINESS IF EVERYBODY KNEW ABOUT THE "CURE FOR TYPE 1 DIABETES" RIGHT? DO YOU KINDA GET WHERE I'M GOING WITH THIS?  I HAVE DONE A LOT OF RESEARCH IN CANADA AND OTHER COUNTRY'S THAT HAVE SUCCESSFULLY DONE IT.  I AM CURRENTLY IN THE PROCESS OF GETTING IN TOUCH WITH THE RIGHT PEOPLE SO I CAN TOO GET THE "CURE FOR TYPE 1 DIABETES" AND I'M WILLING TO PAY AS MUCH AS IT TAKES!! :)

Ok look. I don't mean to be rude or anything don't get me wrong but you don't know if she had diabetes or not. She might have it she might not. I don't see what the big deal about it is. What brought this up anyway? She has been the spokesperson for diabetes before so just get over it!

[quote user="AMOUR"]

THAT'S A GOOD QUESTION MY FRIEND. EVANS, THERE ARE HUGE COMPANY'S LIKE LILLY AND THE PEOPLE WHO MAKE INSULIN SUCH AS HUMALOG AND COUNTLESS OTHER COMPANY'S THAT ALREADY MAKE BILLIONS OFF PEOPLE LIKE YOU AND ME. NOW THEY WOULD BE OUT OF BUSINESS IF EVERYBODY KNEW ABOUT THE "CURE FOR TYPE 1 DIABETES" RIGHT? DO YOU KINDA GET WHERE I'M GOING WITH THIS?  I HAVE DONE A LOT OF RESEARCH IN CANADA AND OTHER COUNTRY'S THAT HAVE SUCCESSFULLY DONE IT.  I AM CURRENTLY IN THE PROCESS OF GETTING IN TOUCH WITH THE RIGHT PEOPLE SO I CAN TOO GET THE "CURE FOR TYPE 1 DIABETES" AND I'M WILLING TO PAY AS MUCH AS IT TAKES!! :)

[/quote]

1. Un-click your CAPS lock button. Typing in all caps is just plain annoying. Type like a normal person. Thanks.

2. I want to see a scientific document that states there is a "Cure for Type 1 Diabetes" and another one that states only the rich and famous have access to it(then why is that annoying little Jonas brother still diabetic?). Not some blog post, or some random "news article" on the web. I want a straight from a legit source, scientific to the point I can barely understand it, document that states there is a cure.

3. I'm not saying I don't agree with you that the companies don't want a cure because they make too much money off of us..I'm just saying I think you're running your mouth off about something that's not true in the slightest.

AND HELLO TO YOU TOO BATTS!  NO OFFENSE, BUT I KIND OF FELT A LITTLE HOSTILITY FROM YOUR MESSAGE.  IT APPEARS YOU'VE BEEN A MEMBER OF THIS GREAT WEBSITE A WHILE AND WELL... THIS IS MY FIRST DAY. I THINK YOU COULD BE A LITTLE BIT MORE WELCOMING TO ME OR AT LEAST COME AT ME WITH A LITTLE BIT MORE RESPECT. ALL OF THE NUMBER ONE-THREE'S  "GETTING ME CORRECT" IS UNNECESSARY.  I DO HAVE ARTICLES FROM DOCTORS AND "RELIABLE" SOURCES THAT I WILL PRESENT TO YOU.  NOT TO TRY TO PROVE ANYTHING TO YOU BUT TO HELP YOU. BECAUSE THAT IS WHAT THIS GREAT WEBSITE IS FOR RIGHT? (NOT TO BE MEAN TO EACH OTHER, OR TELL ANOTHER MEMBER HOW TO WRITE) SO LETS START OVER... MY NAME IS AMOUR, NICE TO MEET YOU.  :)  

[quote user="Brittany "]

Ok look. I don't mean to be rude or anything don't get me wrong but you don't know if she had diabetes or not. She might have it she might not. I don't see what the big deal about it is. What brought this up anyway? She has been the spokesperson for diabetes before so just get over it!

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It's because she's giving people the idea that Type 1 diabetics don't need insulin in order to control their diabetes. I've had someone mention her when I said I had Type 1. That just pissed me off.

I couldn't care less what Halle Berry says about diabetes.  Nor anyone else really for that matter. As long as my doctor knows about it I'm OK.  I also don't care if the general public that doesn't have diabetes knows anything about it or not. What difference does it make?  One things for certain, if they get it, they'll learn about it.

i'm hardly trying to be hostile actually. you'd know if i was, trust me ;)

i just don't believe a single word you've typed and i prefer to not have my eyes strained by having to read CAPS, as i'm sure a lot of other people are here would agree.

if there is a cure, and you have all these legit sources...why are you not sharing them with us and instead taunting us with this idea that you might(but i doubt it) know the secret to getting rid of diabetes. show proof, for i am doubtful of your claims and i'm sure everyone else is, or stop claiming them all together.