This article is addressed to endocrinologists treating patients with diabetic complications as well as to basic scientists studying an elusive link between diseases and aging. It answers some challenging questions. What is the link between insulin resistance (IR), cellular aging and diseases? Why complications such as retinopathy may paradoxically precede the onset of type II diabetes. Why intensive insulin therapy may initially worsen retinopathy. How nutrient- and insulin-sensing mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway can drive insulin resistance and diabetic complications. And how rapamycin, at rational doses and schedules, may prevent IR, retinopathy, nephropathy and beta-cell failure, without causing side effects.