Celebrities Who Have Diabetes

Nick Jonas wrote a song about his type 1 diagnosis, “A Little Bit Longer.”

nick jonas 2020


Nick Jonas.

Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images for Vanity Fair

For people with


, the body does not properly process food so that it can be turned into energy. If you have

type 1 diabetes

, your body cannot produce insulin, a hormone that allows the body to convert sugar from food into energy, and this can cause dangerously high blood sugar levels.

Jonas was diagnosed when he was just 13 years old. He wrote about his diagnosis in a 2018 Instagram post of two pictures of him side by side — one right after he was diagnosed in 2005 and one in 2018.

“13 years ago today I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. The picture on the left is me a few weeks after my diagnosis. Barely 100 pounds after having lost so much weight from my blood sugar being so high before going to the doctor where I would find out I was diabetic,” he wrote.

“On the right is me now. Happy and healthy. Prioritizing my physical health, working out and eating healthy and keeping my blood sugar in check. I have full control of my day to day life with this disease, and I’m so grateful to my family and loved ones who have helped me every step of the way. Never let anything hold you back from living your best life,” he continued.

When writing about his HIV status in The Hollywood Reporter, Billy Porter also revealed he was diagnosed with type 2.

billy porter


Billy Porter.

JMEnternational/Getty Images

In his moving piece for THR in May 2021, Porter briefly wrote about his diabetes diagnosis.

“It was 2007, the worst year of my life. I was on the precipice of obscurity for about a decade or so, but 2007 was the worst of it. By February, I had been diagnosed with

Type 2 diabetes

. By March, I signed bankruptcy papers. And by June, I was diagnosed HIV-positive,” he wrote.

Later on in the article, he wrote about his health status today.

“I go to the doctor, and I know what’s going on in my body. I’m the healthiest I’ve been in my entire life,” he said.

Salma Hayek was diagnosed with gestational diabetes in 2007 while pregnant with her daughter.

salma hayek


Salma Hayek.

Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

When diabetes is diagnosed for the first time during pregnancy, it’s called

gestational diabetes

. Hayek had gestational diabetes while pregnant with her daughter, Valentina, in 2007.

“I got gestational diabetes, which I didn’t realize at first,” Hayek told Parents in 2008. “It occurs in women who have high blood sugar levels during pregnancy. I didn’t know whether I was feeling bad because I was pregnant or whether something was seriously wrong. I was nauseated for nine months, which can be one of the symptoms.”

Tom Hanks thinks he developed type 2 because — in his words — he was “a total idiot.”

tom hanks


Tom Hanks.

Dominik Bindl/FilmMagic/Getty Images

In those with type 2 diabetes, insulin resistance builds up over time, and lifestyle factors may play a part.

Hanks first revealed his diagnosis in 2013 during an appearance on “The Tonight Show with David Letterman.”

“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 said.

In a 2016 interview with the Radio Times, he added: “I’m part of the lazy American generation that has blindly kept dancing through the party and now finds ourselves with a malady.”

“I was heavy. You’ve seen me in movies, you know what I looked like. I was a total idiot,” he continued.

“My doctor says if I can hit a target weight, I will not have type 2 diabetes anymore,” he added.

Paula Deen’s public disclosure of her diabetes diagnosis in 2012 rubbed some people the wrong way.

Paula Deen


Paula Deen.

Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Deen kept her diagnosis a secret from everyone, including the Food Network, for three years — all while promoting her famously decadent recipes.

In 2012, the celebrity chef announced a partnership with Novo Nordisk, which doubled as her announcement of her diagnosis. It rubbed some of her contemporaries the wrong way, like the late chef Anthony Bourdain, who told Eater in 2012: “When your signature dish is hamburger in between a doughnut, and you’ve been cheerfully selling this stuff knowing all along that you’ve got type 2 diabetes, it’s in bad taste if nothing else.”

At the time of her announcement, Deen said, “I know there will be criticism of me. I’ve had criticism since day one, and everyone is entitled to their opinion […] but I can’t let someone take me down or discourage me. I have a mission, and I’m going to see that mission through.”

Meghan Trainor was diagnosed with gestational diabetes in December 2020.

daryl sabara meghan trainor december 2019


Daryl Sabara and Meghan Trainor.

Wiktor Szymanowicz/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

During an appearance on the “Today” show, Trainor spoke about her experience with gestational diabetes.

“Got a little, little, tiny bump in the road — I got diagnosed with gestational diabetes, but it’s manageable and it’s OK and I’m healthy and the baby’s healthy,” Trainor said. “I just have to really pay attention to everything I eat. It’s nice to learn so much about food and health and nice to hear that so many women experienced this.”

She gave birth to a son, Riley, in February 2021.

Randy Jackson wrote about his type 2 diagnosis in his 2008 book, “Body With Soul.”

randy jackson


Randy Jackson.

Rich Polk/Getty Images for Bethesda

“It’s a curse to be saddled with a disease that’s life threatening and that you can’t completely get rid of (though you can certainly manage it). But it’s a blessing to get that huge wake-up call,” Jackson wrote in 2008.

In the book, he revealed he had been diagnosed back in 1999 after a trip to the emergency room.

“For five long days I had been feeling sick in the craziest kind of way — extremely tired, extremely thirsty, all sweaty and dizzy. It felt like I had a really bad cold or the flu, and although I had taken everything from aspirin to cold medicine to try and make myself feel better, nothing had helped,” he recalled. “My doctor had ordered a series of tests, including one that would determine the level of sugar in my blood. A short time later, I got the bad news. ‘It’s kind of what I thought,’ my doctor told me. ‘You have type 2 diabetes. Your blood sugar is over 500.'”

When tennis legend Billie Jean King was diagnosed with type 2, she said she felt “well-prepared” to handle it.

billie jean king 2018


Billie Jean King.

Greg Allen/Invision/AP

“When I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes about three years ago, I felt well-prepared,” King wrote for the Huffington Post in 2007. “My blood sugar started to get elevated and I tracked it with my doctor and I knew I had to make some changes in my life. Like so many people, I have battled with my weight for years, and I realized this was a factor I must address as well.”

“For me, managing my diabetes has been all about making smart food choices without depriving myself of the foods I love — maintaining a healthy relationship with food,” she wrote in another blog post that year. “Eating provides critical fuel for our bodies and is meant to be pleasurable. I think it is important people relax, focus on choosing healthy foods, but most importantly, enjoy what you’re eating.”

Poison’s Bret Michaels was diagnosed with type 1 when he was just 6 years old.

bret michaels


Bret Michaels.

Gary Miller/Getty Images

“No doubt when I got diagnosed at 6 I was really, really sick. I was going into keto-acidosis and it was a pretty scary time of my life, but I was so young so even when I was in the hospital I was totally having fun,” Michaels told Parents in 2010.

“I think it was a blessing because it helped me in this sense: it really gave me a sense of self — the way my parents taught me, a sense of self-confidence, to be aware of my body, to know what’s going on with my body, to be able to know that eating right and exercising and all that stuff would play a big factor in my life — and a life or death factor in my life,” he continued.

Lila Moss walked the runway wearing her insulin pump.

lila moss walking the runway with insulin pump


Lila Grace Moss.

Daniele Venturelli/Getty Images

Moss, the 19-year-old daughter of supermodel Kate Moss, is following in her mother’s footsteps — and not shying away from showing off her insulin pump.

In August 2020, she revealed her diagnosis during an interview with The Kit.

“I think not many people know that I have diabetes. It’s not visible from the outside, so no one would really know just by looking at you. I have type 1,” she said.

“I’d definitely like to try and help as much as I can. There’s loads of things I’d like to try and help with,” Moss added.

Jay Cutler learned to balance type 1 with the rigors of the NFL.

Jay Cutler


Jay Cutler.

Stacy Revere/Getty Images

Cutler was diagnosed in 2008 when he was 24.

“It’s something you go to sleep with and you wake up with everyday,” Cutler told ESPN in 2012. “It’s not something that you can just be like ‘Hey, I’m going to take a day off here and I’ll catch back up with it tomorrow.’ It’s difficult to deal with.”

He continued: “I think more than anything over the past three, four, five years is I’ve changed my diet a lot. I think that’s made the biggest impact on me being able to control my numbers and being able to control diabetes.”

Sherri Shepherd said that getting diagnosed with type 2 may have saved her life.

Sherri Shepherd 2018


Sherri Shepherd.

Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP

Shepherd had experience with diabetes growing up. Two of her sisters also have diabetes, and her mother died of complications due to diabetes.

“If I didn’t have diabetes, I would probably be at the International House of Pancakes eating a stack of pancakes with butter and syrup,” Shepherd told USA Today in 2013. “I would probably be 250 pounds. I would not be going to the doctor,” she added.

But after she was diagnosed, she changed her diet and exercise regimen.

“I feel really healthy,” she said. “I have so much energy. I want to live and I’m going to beat this thing. I feel so blessed.”

Alexandra Park got diagnosed with type 1 right before landing her job on “The Royals.”

alexandra park


Alexandra Park.

Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

Park wrote about her diagnosis in her memoir released in 2021, “Sugar High.”

“I felt like because I’d been diagnosed right before I got my dream job, I had a unique story to tell,” she told Us Weekly. “I made a lot of mistakes trying to juggle this condition with my career, and I think that’s a pretty common experience for type 1 diabetics. This can be a very isolating condition, one that makes you feel hopeless sometimes.”

Patti LaBelle said that, before her type 2 diagnosis, she never went to the doctor.

patti labelle


Patti LaBelle.

Anna Webber/Getty Images

LaBelle’s family was affected by diabetes, as well.

“My mother had amputations and my aunt, she became blind,” she told ABC News in 2017. “When I was diagnosed [in 1995], that was a wake-up call to stop frying the chicken.”

“Before I was diagnosed with diabetes, I never saw a doctor for anything,” she told Essence in 2020. “And when I passed out on stage that night and went to the hospital, the doctor said ‘You’re a type 2 diabetic.’ I said, ‘Oh, really?’ I would never find that out because I would stay at home. I knew it existed in the family. But I said, ‘not me.’ I tell all of my friends, please check yourself before you wreck yourself — go to a doctor.”

James Earl Jones was diagnosed with type 2 in the ’90s, but he didn’t share his diagnosis for two decades.

james earl jones


James Earl Jones.

Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Jones revealed his diagnosis in 2016 after 20 years.

“I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes back in the 1990s,” the “Star Wars” actor told Healthline in 2016. “I was attending a program for diet and exercise, trying to lose some weight. Actors regularly take time off to

lose weight

for roles you’re playing. I fell asleep one day while sitting on a bench in a gymnasium, and a doctor who happened to be there saw me and said, ‘That isn’t normal.'”

He explained that he didn’t have the time until recently to speak about his health.

“I’ve been working steadily for 60 or 70 years now and haven’t had time to commit myself to talking more about it publicly. But suddenly I’ve had more time to do it and this [talking about my diabetes] is something I really wanted to do,” he said.

Lea DeLaria spent a decade not going to the doctor because she couldn’t afford it. Once “Orange Is the New Black” happened, she went and discovered she had type 2 diabetes, among other things.

lea delaria


Lea DeLaria.

Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Entertainment Weekly and PEOPLE

DeLaria told SELF in 2018 that “for a period of about a decade, I didn’t really go to the doctor. If I was sick or didn’t feel well — I couldn’t afford it.”

Once she was cast in “OITNB,” she was able to go to the doctor, where she found out she had

high cholesterol


high blood pressure

, and type 2. She said that she was “knocking on death’s door” when she finally was able to get a check-up.

“I always have to watch [my diabetes]. I have to be there for it. I have to take my medication. I have to eat right,” she said. “Now, I can just have a piece of cake every now and then if I feel like it.”

Chaka Khan became a vegan after getting diagnosed with type 2.

Chaka Khan


Chaka Khan.

David Crotty / Contributor / Getty Images

“My weight loss had to occur, because I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and I also had high blood pressure. And I’ve been on medication for that since last year until the beginning of this year. And I ended up going, ‘Oh, no, no, no, no, this is enough. I can’t live like this,'” she told Huffington Post in 2012.

“What I did was stopped eating and went on a strict unconditional fast for a couple of months. And went off meat, became vegan, stopped all the dairy, stopped all the meat,” she continued.

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