I was 24 when I was diagnosed in ‘98, following a nasty dose of gastric flu. I’d lost a few pounds, but nothing drastic, there wasn’t time for that to kick in - and I thought it was due to the gastric flu anyway. They did a urine test, declared I was producing golden syrup and packed me off to hospital. I had to get my PhD supervisor to take me, as I was too wobbly for the bus! I was a few hundred miles from home, so couldn’t call on my family. So I suppose I was lucky they caught it when they did - my consultant is pretty sure that the gastric flu was what caused my immune system to go into overdrive and eat my pancreas, and fast. In the 20 years since, I’ve suddenly developed all sorts of allergies, with no warning. Oilseed pollen, hair dye, and in the last couple of years, mammal meat, then bird meat and more recently cow dairy. It’s like when my immune system decides it doesn’t like something, it does it quickly and in spectacular fashion!