Tom Hanks Reveals Type 2 Diabetes Diagnosis


This week, mega star Tom Hanks revealed he has type 2 diabetes on the Late Show with David Letterman. According to Hanks, he has had borderline high blood sugar levels since the age of 36 and finally “graduated” to full-blown type 2 diabetes.

To look at Tom Hanks, he doesn’t seem like your average candidate for this disease. He isn’t overweight and seems to look healthy. However, that’s the tricky part about type 2 diabetes. Sometimes even the people who look the healthiest may actually have it. Type 2 diabetes can affect anyone.

Erin Roe, M.D., on staff at the Baylor Endocrine Center on the campus of Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas, was interviewed about Tom Hanks’ type 2 diabetes by WFAA, Ch. 8, the local ABC affiliate here in Dallas-Fort Worth.

Could Tom Hanks’ weight fluctuation in movie roles have something to do with this diagnosis? Dr. Roe offers some great insight in this three-minute clip from WFAA:

If you aren’t able to watch the video, here are some of the main points from Dr. Roe:

  • Gaining a lot of weight in a short amount of time can strain your metabolism.
  • Even losing 5-10 percent of your body weight may protect you from type 2 diabetes or lessen your need for medications if you have already been diagnosed.
  • You don’t need to set huge weight loss goals to help prevent type 2 diabetes. Just losing 10-15 pounds can make a big difference.
  • Family history plays a huge role in whether or not you will develop type 2 diabetes.
  • A diagnosis of type 2 diabetes is a huge lifestyle adjustment. Maintaining normal blood sugar levels, taking medications and adjusting your diet can be overwhelming.

Interested in more diabetes resources?

What’s the difference between Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes? What’s your A1C level? What’s DKA? If this sounds like a foreign language, you may be in need of a diabetes download. Take our diabetes quiz on BaylorHealth.com to test your knowledge. You can also watch this video from a dietitian, diabetes patient and physician on the medical staff who share what they think are the three most important things to know about diabetes.

If you would like to find a physician, use our “Find a Physician” tool on BaylorHealth.com or call 1-800-4BAYLOR.


About the author

Ashley Howland
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Ashley works in digital communications and social media. She enjoys covering health care news and is interested in health care social media.

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Tom Hanks Reveals Type 2 Diabetes Diagnosis