Why is my LADA not getting worse?

I dont get this, people with Lada tell me that their pancreas stopped producing insulin within months after getting their diagnosis. I’ve had diabetes for more than three years now (probably longer) and still seem to produce as much insulin as i did when i got the diagnosis. Has anybody else in here had lingering insulin productions for years? Sometimes I dont even need to take meal time insulin if i am very careful with my diet.
Im just curious to find out.

Perhaps you have been taking good care of yourself. Perhaps your use of insulin preserved enough function that you can waver for many years. Perhaps LADA is just an autoimmune disease with a highly variable time factor and yours is decades, not months. Many T2s are probably autoimmune, but are not tested and they go for years. Who knows.

I read in Dr. Bernstein’s book that some people with type 1 diabetes still had some insulin production after 50 years with the disease. So I think that we have different types of autoimmune reactions going on… or some other reason that some people maintain more insulin production than others. I wish that I new more!

Hope that you keep producing insulin!

I was diagnosed with LADA seven years ago and a recent C peptide test showed that I was still producing insulin, albeit a very small amount. When I was first diagnosed, the C peptide showed that I was producing far more insulin.

My hunch is that, just as with many aspects of diabetes, each person’s insulin production varies.

Keep up the great work!

I often wondered also, when I was first diagnosed at the age of 32 I was put on insulin, for 9 months I used insulin and then the pancreas kicked in, go figure I guess the pancreas work when they feel like it. Its hard to nail down what is going to get me a high or a low. Somedays I get a high from certain food and somedays I am normal when I eat the same food

Hopefully, your honeymoon will continue to last. I am just over one year into my journey, and I am still at the exact same insulin dosage with a 5.7 A1C. Its nice to have some “Home Brewed” insulin in your system to clean up after Novolog.

Hi Dolores: Just keep up the good control and keep those last surviving beta cells going as long as possible! Lots of people with LADA have long honeymoons, not several months but several years.

I’m still honeymooning after 2+ years. Like you, I can eat some meals without a bolus, depending on carb content. Hoping it will stay this way for 50+ years!


Here is what happened to me. In about 1997, I had gone to the naturopath to have some tests done. I had been taking Coorgard and Diaxide for many years for my migraine headaches. When I came back for the results, the naturopath said to me. "Linda, all your test came out good except you are diabetic. I was shocked.

I went to my internist, and my glucose levels were 126 to 150, definitely in the diabetes range. She gave me glyburide and metformin, thinking I was a Type 2 diabetic, even though I was losing weight rapidly and very sickly.

After about 9 months of trying everything, my sister, who was a nurse, asked one of the endo docs where she worked if he would consider seeing me for a consultation. She said she thought I was wasting away. He agreed.

I had many tests, and he tracked my diabetes for several weeks, trying all the same Type 2 meds. Nothling helped. Then he tried insulin. It worked, and was not a Type 2 diabetic.

At this time, not much was known about LADA diabetes. I took insulin at dinner and before bedtime for 5 years, watching everything I ate, being sick much of the time, but keeping my A1C below 7. I was literally starving myself. I was not getting enough nutrition from what I was eating, but did not want to go on full insulin.

Then one day, I got very sick. My blood sugars were over 200. I was struggling. My honeymoon period was over.In 2003. I begain full insulin, and it was the best thing I ever did. I am very healty now. Beware of the honeymoon being over.

hi Dolores,

It sounds as though you have been using Insulin since your diagnosis?
I thought I’d share this with you.

When my Diabetes was finally [after a lifetime of unrecognized signs] discovered 8 years ago, I insisted on
Insulin – not because I or my PCP realized at the time that I had LADA, but because
I am deeply pharma-phobic. My PCP wanted me to take pills, was utterly shocked but indulged me my request.
So by coincidence, I am a LADA who has been ‘on Insulin’ since diagnosis.

Well, lo and behold, I need less Insulin now.
Gradually over the past 8 years my daily requirement has stabilized down from initial
25 units daily to about 10-12 units per day and my eyesight has improved.

So your history sounds totally normal to me!

All my best,


I’ve had the same thing i was diagnosed in May of 2008 and still like you said if i eat right and excerise I’m pretty good. what insulin are you taking?? one of my endos said that sometimes when you get pregnant you go full blown type 1 bc of all the amount of work your organs have to do… who knows… its all very confusing to me still …

I have had two kids while having diabetes and have not noticed a change. Only during the pregnancies. Then I had to take huge amounts of insulin because the pregnancy makes you less sensitive to insulin. So i had to take about 35 units of insulin with every meal in the late stages of my pregnancy. But when I gave birth my diabetes went back to the way it used to be…

hi Stephanie,

Funny you should ask what Insulin I am using as a couple of weeks ago I changed back to Humalog from several years with Novolog. It’s instantly mellower for me, but does present a whole new set of dosing challenges as it acts more slowly. I must now inject 15-20 minutes before I eat which I never had to do before - a mixed blessing. The most difficult adjustment, short of preventing their ever happening at all, is the hours long wait for high or rising BG to come down. This is grounds for returning to Novolog, which keeps me in a mildly hyperactive state OR to persuade my endo to let me try Apridra. Any ideas anyone?

Hi Dolores,

I can’t say with certainty what my insulin production did for the first 15 years after my diagnosis; no one bothered to run a c-peptide on me until I forced the issue and that was just back in 2008! However, I can say that over the years, it did become increasingly difficult to manage my diabetes, to be “careful” with my diet so my bgs would not run high. I talked to my endo about it, and he said that while my case is highly unusual, there have been cases of LADAs who’ve gone for several years before their pancreases completely give out. Also, Kristin makes an important point: Even people who’ve had type 1 for decades can and do show some insulin production, albeit not enough to have any major impact. I knew a person in his 50s who had type 1 from the time he was 8 years old who showed some insulin production when he’d had a c-peptide test done.

So, take a deep breath and relax, as others have said. You’re not alone out there!

We don’t know enough about autoimmune diseases to be able to answer that question. It could be that by taking such good care of yourself you’ve dampened down the immune response enough that your immune cells aren’t targeting your beta cells at this time and that is enough to keep your insulin production stable. All I can say is, keep doing what you’re doing, avoid stressors, and hope it keeps up!

I was diagnosed 2 1/2 years ago with LADA and got on insulin fairly quickly. (6 units of Levemir twice a day and 3-4 units of Apidra with meals) About 6 months ago I had testing for food allergies and have cut out everything that was triggering an inflammation response. Since then my blood pressure has gone down to low normal and I have been able to stop all blood pressure meds. I’ve cut out insulin except for an occasional high carb meal, and am able to maintain normal BG levels mostly with diet and exercise. My antibody levels were on the border line and recent testing showed that they are now undetectable. I have several other autoimmune conditions, including hypothyroid, psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. I am convinced that the food allergies were a major contributing factor to my LADA as well as the other conditions and that I am now having a lower autoimmune response. It is hard to follow the diet, since I can’t have wheat, corn or rice, and also have to avoid 40 other items including onions, tomatoes and vanilla. The blood pressure improvement lets me know that I am on the right track and makes it worth while for me to continue.


I first started seeing an endo when I had normal A1C and did not require insulin. It took 2 years for me to start needing Lantus (3U at first, LOL!), and now 2 years after that, I am on a pump, but still not needing that much insulin, about 10-11 U per day.
It used to be months before anything would change in the way of my response to sugar, but now, my numbers are changing dramatically- every three weeks it seems I need to largely change my basal rates and ratios.

I wondered for a long time if there was something odd about me that I was still so stable when other ladas were not- but I think that is because I caught mine so very very early (thanks to a research study I was in- I was supposed to be a normal control- it turned out I was not normal :slight_smile:

Did you discover yours early? Perhaps that is the reason.

I was just reading about this! LADA is often called slow onset diabetes because it often takes YEARS before the pancreas stops producing insulin completely. I have read where up to six years is common. Enjoy it and hope it lasts! (((hugs)))

Where can I read more about LADA?

Hi Tony: There is a LADA Diabetics group here on TuDiabetes, and a great resource is actually the video under that group put together by Manny Hernandez, founder of TuDiabetes (Manny has LADA). LADA is a term for Type 1 diabetes in adults.