So, my toddler has diabetes

Natural and greek yoghurt are usually available unsweetened, yes. Every “tastes like whatever” variety I’ve seen was sweetened.

Can Gnat chew ham (cut tiny)?

Athena, do you normally eat wholegrain? Do you eat as much fruit and the same types as you used to?

My niece developed type 1 when she was 9, so she was quite a bit older. My sister has done a lot of studying and participates on a couple of boards.

They got a pump this year, and they really love it. It makes things much nicer.

It does take managing, but it’s not that bad. She can still have cookies and other sweets, but in managed quanities. Pop is right out, though.

We went back in September this year and my niece is really good about doing her own testing.

I know it was quite a shock for my sister at first, but they are all doing really well with it now.

I’m sure it’s tough for you now, but hang it there.

We’re hanging in. Thanks, TokyoPlayer, and everyone else.

Nat likes ham, but can’t really chew all of it. I’m resigned to picking up pieces of whatever he enjoys but can’t chew right now.

Yogurt actually has carbohydrates (I assume from the lactose) so it’s a meal or scheduled snack food. That’s okay. I asked his dietician about substituting sour cream and sugar-free jam if he wants yogurt between meals, and she thought that would be fine.
In Emergency, when he wasn’t allowed to eat, he gave the nurse and doctors a terrible impression of what he eats at home. He kept up a plaintive sobbing stream of food requests- “Fries? Fries? Sandwich? Fries? Cookie? Sauce? Cookie? Burger?”

It was pretty funny.

I am not a diabetic, but my husband is. When he was first diagnosed I started cooking things like muffins with Splenda with good results. Just follow the directions given. They have Splenda formulated specifically for baking so you don’t have to change measurements (1 cup Splenda = 1 cup sugar). Of course, speak with a dietitian.

As time went on and my husband’s condition stabilized we went back to real sugar - he just eats smaller portions and is careful to incorporate his “sweet allowance” into his diet plan. He is type II so his treatment is different from that of a type I, but dietary control is still very important.

Diabetics of all types have some vulnerability to blood sugar that is too low, and at such times eating real sugar/sweets may be appropriate. My husband has occasionally been victim of do-gooders trying to deprive him of his emergency stash of hard candy. There is a LOT of misinformation about diabetes out there, and that includes quite a few diabetics, sadly. Please do your own research, fact-check everything, and try not to panic.

On a more optimistic note - one of my first employers was a man diagnosed with type I as a toddler. He lived well into his 70’s and was healthy and active up until the end, despite the much more primitive treatments back then (he died in the early 1980’s). With today’s knowledge and treatment it is entirely possible your child will live an equally long and even healthier life.

Underline mine. Those are normally “no sugar added:” fructose again. By the time you 've got his diet under control, you will be able to get a MSc in Sugar Chemistry :slight_smile:

I have actually seen both “No Sugar Added” and “Sugar-Free” jellies in the store. No Sugar Added tastes pretty good, but Sugar-Free tastes like ass, IMO.

The carbs in yogurt (You’re right; it’s from the lactose in the milk) tend to cause lower blood sugar spikes in diabetics than you would expect just from strict carb content, so it may be worthwhile to try one and see what the blood sugar reading is afterward.

I eat wholegrain, but I did before as well. I also eat the occasional white flour treat like croissants. But my everyday bread is wholegrain, now and pre-diabetes.

I also still eat fruit, but in smaller quantities. Used to be that I’d just take the whole bowl of grapes ( or whatever) and graze. Now, it gets weighed & dosed for, and I’m eating more appropriate portions.
And it’s working; my weight is stable, and my a1cs are in the low 5s. It was a long year, but I really feel like my life is back to normal now.

It’s no sugar added, and I read the label to our nurse, and she asked a dietician… it works out to have the same carb count as peanut butter, which is okay in small quantities.

I am so very, very grateful that I remember some of my organic chem from high school.

I haven’t baked with artificial sweeteners: we actually still use sugar for baking, but we watch portions and figure it into her carb counts and my calorie counts. I agree with Athena: there is no forbidden food, but we do use a portable scale and the Calorie King book to watch portion size and count carbs. Our daughter loves Coke Zero, but I’ve noticed it messes with her BG as well. We’ve gone to water. We avoid juice unless she has a hypoglycemic episode: look for more complex carbohydrates like fruit that take longer to convert to glucose. The BG is controlled much better that way.

Also, watch out for vitamin D: it seems it’s easier for children with diabetes to find themselves with a deficiency. Our daughter had to take supplements for about 6 months to get hers back under control. Oh, and I will sympathize: she is also a breadaholic. She loves bread. I like to go to the health food store and get breads with a lower glycemic index rating. If you go to the store, whole wheat or whole grain is best: read the labels and watch out for breads with extra sugar. It’s totally unnecessary, doesn’t add to the flavor, and is much better for the whole family.

How’s he doing? Is he handling the injections well? The needles are so much smaller than they ever were, so she didn’t feel it at all.

I cannot agree with this enough. We are on a constant mission to educate as many people about diabetes as possible. Lows are frightening: her first real scary low was a 38, and I grabbed several glucose tabs and said, “Here - CHEW.” :smiley: She carries a kit with her, and she has backup supplies at school that we send at the beginning of the year. Part of her supply bag includes a fun size package of Skittles: it’s the perfect size of candy to being up a low, and she loves them.

I keep copies of the Diabetes Etiquette Card. This really helps educate people who don’t have diabetes on what they should or should not say to someone with diabetes. It helps so much. If the link doesn’t work, Google diabetes etiquette card. It should be the first link.


I’m an RN and work with kids with diabetes, including those newly-diagnosed, regularly.

The first thing I would warn you about is taking good-intentioned - but misguided - advice from anyone on the internet (including me) without discussing the specifics with your healthcare team. I already see some misinformation in this thread.

Secondly, congratulations on being pro-active and seeking out information when Nathaniel initially got sick.

Also know that there are some advantages to Type I emerging at such a young age (try getting a 14-year-old to change his eating habits). I always tell parents that their child will be eating healthier - and have a boatload more insight into his nutrition - than any of his friends.

You’ll be fine. I’ve seen it a million times at first diagnosis: parents overwhelmed, kids terrified of the entire process, entire families up in arms about the tragedy of diabetes…and it always gets better. Kids learn, parents chill, everybody adapts.

Nothing you are going through, and nothing you will go through, has never been gone through before. You are not a pioneer, you do not need to blaze any trails. There are solutions to every potential roadblock, answers to every frightening question.

In other words, don’t kill yourself trying to learn everything all at once. It will come. If Nathanial has an upset stomach on Thanksgiving but still wants to try a bite of pumpkin pie but his blood sugar is 288 and he’s spilling trace ketones in his urine and he only ate half of his breakfast this morning after taking his full dose of insulin…he will still be OK. It will get figured out.

Best of luck to you.


It’s funny- we’re Canadian, so we’re on the British system for blood glucose monitoring. The number you are all quoting are so different from the ones we’re getting in our training.

I know it will get better, and we’re just overwhelmed right now. We’re spending another four hours with our team tomorrow, and we have lists of questions. And don’t worry- we’re not taking nutritional advice from imaginary internet people. :smiley:

Do imaginary internet people still count as imaginary if you’ve had lunch with them? Imaginary inquiring minds want to know!

Just another quick note from the parent of a Type 1 - be careful of sugar-free candy that contains sugar alcohols as sweetners. The most common of these are Xylitol, Sorbitol (basically anything that ends in “itol”). These are not absorbed by the body, and therefore can lead to all kinds of stomach distress.

And diarrhea. You forgot the “-itol” diarrhea. Which my husband found out about the hard way, unfortunately. As in all things, moderation is important. “Sugar-free” is not a license to stuff your face silly with something.

Some of my imaginary internet friends have mailed me very real cookies and chocolate. I like them, even if they don’t exist.

I made some cookies with almond flour and splenda last night, as a fending-off-pre-breakfast-freakout snack, and tried them on him, and he got a weird rash around his mouth. I’m not positive it was the sweetener, but it seems likely. Back to the drawing board.

Or it could be the almonds…

How about some {{{hugs}}} for the adaption period you’re all going through? I can’t give you much real advice, other than talk to doctors/dieticians and do research, but I can at least give you sympathy.

There is some whole wheat flour out there that mimics white flours. I use it for baking now, as it seems to annoy my husband’s sugar readings less than true white flour. You might try that - or not. Entirely up to you and your judgment.

Probably not the almonds- he hasn’t reacted to them before, and he’s had all kinds of nuts.

I’m looking forward to a very in-depth conversation with the nutritionist tomorrow.

No advice, but I wanted you to know that I’m watching this thread and thinking about all of you. Hugs.


I talked to my sister and she really sympathizes with you. As I said, her daughter was older when she developed diabetes, but my sister said it very much seemed overwhelming at first.

She really recommends the Children With Diabetes forum, linked earlier in the thread. She says there are some really knowledgable people there who are very helpful.