Type 1 diabetes is a disease in which factors like a virus or pollution can trigger a response by the body’s defenses (immune system). This can destroy the insulin-making cells in the pancreas in at-risk individuals (usually children). We do not know what the trigger is, but it is likely to be environmental factors. In a large study in England, researchers looked at the links between many different environmental factors and type 1 diabetes in children. For 14,000 cases of childhood type 1 diabetes, researchers showed that the risk is higher in rural and coastal areas than in towns and cities. Surprisingly, it appears that living in towns and cities protects against this type of diabetes.
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