The 26-year-old pop star shared on Instagram on Friday night an alarming throwback photo of himself as a teenager, in good spirits but looking gaunt. The pic was taken shortly after his diagnosis of the autoimmune disease, when his pancreas stopped producing insulin, which regulates his blood sugar level. His body had begun to burn muscle and fat for energy, causing him to lose weight rapidly. He could have died had he not been put on lifelong synthetic insulin therapy on time.
“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,” continued Jonas, who wears an insulin pump. “Never let anything hold you back from living your best life. Thank you to all my fans for your kind words and support. Means more than you know. Love you all. #grateful#diabetes #livebeyond #fbf.”
“Everything about you is special,” Chopra commented. “With or without diabetes.”
The singer and 36-year-old actress are expected to marry in the coming weeks in her native India. If they have a wedding cake, Jonas may get to have some; many type 1 diabetics can have sweets on rare occasions, if they inject themselves with extra insulin.