The 57-year-old Oscar-winning actor announced he has type 2 diabetes when late-night host David Letterman commented on his newly slim figure in October 2013. "I went to the doctor and he said, ‘You know those high blood sugar numbers you’ve been dealing with since you were 36? Well, you’ve graduated. You’ve got type 2 diabetes, young man.'" Hanks added that the condition is controllable, but he joked that he couldn't get back down to his high school weight of 96 pounds. "I was a very skinny boy!"
Actress Halle Berry has type 2 diabetes. Forget the gossip that Berry had "weaned" herself from insulin and switched from type 1 to type 2 diabetes -- that's not possible. Type 1 diabetes patients can't make insulin and require insulin injections for life. Some type 2 diabetes patients also need insulin shots, in addition to oral medications, to control blood sugar. But most people with type 2 diabetes can survive without insulin, unlike type 1 diabetes patients.
Talk show host Larry King has type 2 diabetes. "It's definitely controllable," King has said on his show. Diabetes makes heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, and other serious health problems more likely. King had quintuple bypass heart surgery in 1987. Diabetes wasn't his only risk factor: -- King had been a heavy smoker, and smoking hurts the heart. But by taking care of his diabetes (and quitting smoking), King helps his heart and the rest of his body.
Actress Salma Hayek had gestational diabetes, a type of diabetes that happens during pregnancy, while pregnant with her daughter, Valentina. Hayek has a family history of diabetes. Almost all women are checked for gestational diabetes when they are 24-28 weeks pregnant; women at risk for type 2 diabetes are checked at their first prenatal visit. Gestational diabetes usually goes away after pregnancy, but it raises the risk of developing type 2 diabetes or getting gestational diabetes again.
Singer Nick Jonas of the Jonas Brothers went public with his type 1 diabetes in 2007. He has said that his symptoms included weight loss and thirst. When diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, his blood sugar was over 700 -- normal blood sugar levels are from 70 to 120. Jonas was hospitalized and learned to manage his type 1 diabetes. Once called juvenile diabetes, type 1 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes among people younger than 20, but it can strike at any age.
Celebrity chef Paula Deen announced in January 2012 that she has type 2 diabetes. Deen, well known for her buttery, sugary recipes, said that she learned she had the disease a few years earlier but didn't speak about it publicly because she wasn't ready. But, she says, she wants "to let the world know that [diabetes] is not a death sentence".
The Emmy-nominated actress publicly battled weight gain, which may have triggered her type 2 diabetes. When she left her sitcom "Designing Women," Burke weighed a lifetime high of 215 pounds. With the help of doctors, a healthy diet, walking, and medication, she's now down to 150. "There are so many things you have to watch," she told Diabetic Living. "It's a lot of searching and it can be tedious, but you just have to stick with it."
The sitcom star and game show host said he had type 2 diabetes but was tired of the health problems and all the extra weight he was carrying. He told People magazine that he cut carbs from his diet and began hitting the gym religiously. He dropped 80 pounds. "I'm not diabetic anymore. No medication needed."
The comedian, actress, and co-host of "The View" said even after being diagnosed with diabetes, it took her a while to change her pasta-heavy diet. But eventually, she discovered vegetables without sauce, oatmeal without brown sugar, and cut out fried foods and white bread. A healthy diet combined with exercise helped her lose weight and feel a lot better.
American Idol judge Randy Jackson learned he had type 2 diabetes in 2001. Back then, Jackson was obese, which makes type 2 diabetes more likely. Jackson was also at risk because diabetes ran in his family, and African-Americans are more likely than whites to develop diabetes. Jackson has since gotten gastric bypass surgery, lost 100 pounds, improved his diet, and made exercise -- including walking on a treadmill and practicing yoga -- a staple of his life.
Billie Jean King
The tennis great says as an athlete she's always been mindful of diet and exercise. But when she was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in 2007, she took it to a new level. The hardest adjustment, she says, was cutting back on carbs and sugars. "That's not fun for a lot of people, but it sure is fun to feel good," she told Ladies' Home Journal. She tells people who are diagnosed: "Just know that you can live a normal, wonderful, terrific, active life."
Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 2008 after he lost 35 pounds and felt like he had no energy, according to media reports. But Cutler hasn't let diabetes sideline him. Cutler now wears an insulin pump, monitors his blood sugar, and has called his condition "manageable." Type 1 diabetes is a disease, in which the body's immune system attacks the cells in that make insulin, a hormone that controls blood sugar.
Bret Michaels, singer for the band Poison, manages diabetes while living the life of a rock star and television personality. Michaels was diagnosed at age 6. As an adult he takes "four insulin injections and eight blood tests each day," according to his web site. 2010 brought a series of health problems for Michaels, including a brain hemorrhage, yet he finished and won TV's The Celebrity Apprentice and pledged his $250,000 award to the American Diabetes Association.
Singer Patti LaBelle has type 2 diabetes. On her web site, LaBelle recalls her diagnosis. "I passed out on stage ... and the doctor came back to me and said, 'Did you know you were type 2 diabetic?' and I said, 'I had no idea,'" states LaBelle, who has a family history of diabetes. LaBelle has since written healthy cookbooks, and she exercises regularly. She called herself a "divabetic" -- that's a mix of diabetic and diva -- in People in December 2008.
Mary Tyler Moore
Actress Mary Tyler Moore has type 1 diabetes. Moore's diabetes was diagnosed at age 30, when she was hospitalized after suffering a miscarriage. A routine blood test done at the hospital showed a very high blood sugar level of 750. "They put me on insulin right away," Moore told CNN's Larry King in 2005. Now in her 70s, Moore has long been active in promoting diabetes research; she serves as the International Chairman of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.