New Pancreas Quiets Cravings

| Apr 10, 2007

I read with interest Scott”s recent column (“Starting the Conversation”) in which he described eating all the ice cream. Having spent 36 years as a type 1, and now almost seven years cured after a kidney/pancreas transplant (KPTX), I have a unique perspective.

When I was a diabetic, I was always hungry. After the KPTX. the hunger disappeared. It only occurs when I have forgotten to eat, and I no longer have cravings for any particular food.

Maybe the craving and occasional fits of gorging are due to rebellion against supposed deprivation. But maybe they are physiological, considering that our glucose levels are never consistently in a normal range. Just a thought.

Catherine McNair
via Internet

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Categories: Diabetes, Diabetes, Food, Letters to the Editor, My Own Injection, Type 1 Issues

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Posted by Anonymous on 23 February 2009

They are caused by a lack of Amylin, the hormone which regulates hunger with digestion. People without beta cells do not make insulin or amylin, and thus are less likely to feel full after eating.

To some degree this is ameliorated by slow digestion in those with nerve damage in their GI tract, but if you have no damage in your GI tract, and no amylin to slow down pareisis while eating, that full feeling is difficult to pin down.

I remember being a teenager prior to diagnosis. I haven't felt "full" the way I used to feel "full" before diabetes was in my life. But with a new pancreas you now have both Insulin and Amylin, and can experience that fleeting feeling of "I'm done. I don't need to eat any more" that most of us no longer have.

I miss that. Symlin is supposed to replace Amylin, but it's a very difficult drug to take, especially if you already have well-controlled blood sugars it can easily throw a wrench into your plans.

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