If your child has recently been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, your family will have a learning curve as you get the hang of proper care and a new routine.
Your lives will change, but in time you'll get more comfortable with this "new normal."
As you make adjustments, you can take comfort in knowing this autoimmune disease doesn’t have to limit your child. "Kids with diabetes can do everything other kids can do," says Andrea Petersen Hulke of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
It can help to count your carbs from things you eat or drink, and split them evenly between meals so that it’s in line with how much insulin is available from your body or from medicine. If you get more than your insulin supply can handle, your blood sugar level goes up. If you eat too few carbohydrates, your blood sugar level may fall too low.
With carbohydrate counting, you can pick almost any food product off the shelf, read the label, and use the information about grams of carbohydrates to fit the food into your meal plan.
Counting carbs is most useful for people who use insulin several times a day or wear an insulin pump, or want more flexibility and variety in their food choices. The amount and type of insulin you are prescribed may affect the flexibility of your meal plan.
You don’t have to count carbs. You could use diabetes food exchange lists instead. Ask your doctor or a registered dietitian for their advice on that.
How Fiber Helps
Fiber helps control blood sugar. It also helps you lower your “bad” (LDL) cholesterol.
Most Americans need more fiber in their diets. The average American only gets about half the fiber needed on a daily basis.
You get fiber from plant foods, so plan to eat more of these foods: