Sarah Silverman Is Producing A Documentary On America’s Insulin Crisis

 | 
December 24, 2022
UPDATED: 
December 24, 2022


Sarah Silverman is set to finish a documentary called Pay Or Die, which focuses on the U.S.’s growing insulin crisis. The doc is around the stories of people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes who are consistently on the edge of life and death as the cost of the drug soars ever higher.

The piece is in the final stages of production and focuses on the immeasurable task of living with a chronic illness in the United States. The producers say the doc “positions the insulin problem as the tip of the iceberg for the larger health care and drug pricing issues Americans face.”

The executive producer team consists of Silverman, her manager Amy Zvi and Douglas Choi amongst other producers. With Scott Ruderman and Rachael Dyer as directors. Ruderman has been a cinematographer on Taste the Nation and Chasing Ghislaine plus has personal experience with the subject matter, being diagnosed with type 1 diabetes when he was 19. Dyer was a producer on Netflix’s
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(Un)Well and the Clintons’ Gutsy Women.

“Sarah is such a passionate advocate for health care reform,” said Ruderman and Dyer in a joint statement, praising Silverman. “Her willingness to use her public platform to help ring the alarm about how millions of Americans are suffering unnecessarily in this country as a result of a broken health care system — not just those with diabetes but those with asthma, cancer, mental illness and countless other conditions — makes her an extraordinary partner on this project.”

In response, Silverman said, “I believe Rachael and Scott might just shame our shameless government enough to move the needle,”

“I’m grateful for the chance to help get eyes on this crucial documentary.”

Talking to Bill Panagiotakopoulos, he was full of praise for the development of the documentary and felt like it was a necessity to draw eyes to the growing and deeply concerning issue.

Panagiotakopoulos is the founder of Diabetinol, a company founded after he discovered he was pre-diabetic in 2019. As a successful entrepreneur already through his company Rekemend, a start-up Nutraceutical Company, he started looking for solutions and technologies in the nutritional science space for ways for individuals to protect themselves, prevent ailments and avoid further adverse health consequences.

“An alarming statistic is the number of individuals who are prediabetic, but are not aware of their condition and, as a result, have a greater risk of developing full-blown Type-2 diabetes,” he said.

“One of the groups that have experienced higher rates of complications from the Coronavirus has been those who are pre-diabetic. Diabetinol was developed to challenge perceptions of prediabetes management and help protect the health of prediabetic patients.”

Similarly to what Silverman is aiming to highlight, Diabetinol plans to undertake initiatives to ensure access to low-income and underserved communities which experience the highest incidence of elevated blood sugar due to poor diet.

The company is focused on facilitating healthy blood sugar levels in North America through dietary supplements. Diabetinol is a completely vegan and organic product.

Diabetes and pre-diabetes are epidemic in the U.S., the CDC reports that in 2022,14.7% of adults (that’s almost 1 in 6) have been diagnosed. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle before reaching a disease state is critical and that is what Diabetinol facilitates. As more awareness is grown through documentaries such as Pay Or Die, more preventative and acute work must be done to address the issue also.

Panagiotakopoulos continued, “Clinical studies conducted on Diabetinol show that it significantly reduces peak blood sugar levels following eating within the healthy range.”

“This indicates support of a healthy ability to process sugars in those with prediabetes. Addressing metabolism is a critical step for anyone concerned with slightly elevated blood sugar levels and Diabetinol has been shown to improve glucose tolerance while also decreasing LDL and total cholesterol levels.”

He concluded, “We are focused on adults across all age groups. The prevalence of elevated levels increases greatly with age so we expect that older adults will be a higher proportion of consumers seeking out our product, but we are targeting all adults in an effort to help people intervene early and maintain healthy blood sugar levels.”

The production team are still looking to release the doc this year or early next year. According to its GoFundMe page, the doc has raised $22,869 of its $25,000 goal.



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  • Chuck Parsons

    Chuck is Score LA’s Executive Director of Events and Marketing. He aims to help business owners and would-be entrepreneurs in Los Angeles improve their business practices.

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