Dear Dr Banting

Dear Dr Banting,                                                                   

You do not know me but I know a lot about you. The invention of the internet by another genius called Tim Berners-Lee gives me the ability to learn about you on a small electrical device about the size of a hip flask. We call it a smart phone.

I am writing this letter to say thank you. Your discovery of insulin was a miracle and because of it I am now able to be the healthiest version of myself. The insulin helps me and many others take on Type 1 Diabetes with confidence knowing that we will be just fine with it by our side. Without your discovery I might have only had months to live.

An internet encyclopedia written by non-academics called Wikipedia said that you were born on a farm in Canada in 1891. I find that I develop, what I like to call, “Rudolph nose” every time I brave the cold. Perhaps you did too in the Canadian Winter? 

I also learned that you studied medicine after two events occurred: rushing to the aid of two men when the roof that they were working on collapsed and also having a close friend pass away from the noticeable symptoms of Type 1 Diabetes.  I find it incredible that not even a World War interrupting your medical education distracted you from your calling.  You were even awarded a Militarily Cross. Amazing.

Injecting insulin for the first time was no easy feat for me.  My fear of needles had to instantaneously “vanish” upon diagnosis. I would now say that needles and I are pals. We get along fabulously most days (we do have sharp moments in our friendship!).

It must have taken guts to have been one of the first people to ever inject insulin without knowing the effects.

I am so glad that you were recognized for your discovery of insulin in 1923 with a Nobel Prize and I am not at all surprised that you generously shared the credit and prize money with your lab partner Mr Best.

Dr Banting, I cannot thank you enough on behalf of all Type 1 Diabetics.  As a small token of my thanks I promise to educate others about you and to post some of your world famous paintings on my blog – a blog is an amateur writer posting articles on the internet.

I will never forget what you have done to help hundreds, thousands and millions of people just like me.

Best regards

Antonia

Glucose upon publishing: 10.5 mmol/L

Fredrick Banting – “The Lab” – 1925

3 thoughts on “Dear Dr Banting

  1. Sehra Yeap March 9, 2020 / 11:09 pm

    Great post Antonia! I don’t particularly like needles myself, and I admire how brave you must have to be with them!

    We do take so many medical advances for granted these days, and I think it’s great that you have chosen to tell us about Dr Banting.

    Now I’m curious about what he looks like! Maybe you could include a photo of him in this post?

    Best wishes always, Sehra

    PS – Fun fact: there is a town in Malaysia called Banting! Although I don’t know if it was named after the good doctor. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Banting

    • Insulearning with Antonia March 10, 2020 / 2:50 pm

      Really appreciate your comment. I get your point about needles (snigger).

      Thank you for the link to Banting, Malaysia – cool.

  2. Alistair March 14, 2020 / 3:14 am

    Hi Antonia! Great post. I am in Toronto at the moment and decided to do a little digging after reading about Dr. Banting on your blog.

    Turns out there is a very interesting exhibit of him in the MaRS Centre (Medical and Related Science) where he did some of his works! He also has a diabetes research centre in the as-well as a foundation named after him at the university. Very cool stuff.

    Keep the blogs coming and looking forward to next week.

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