Food for children and adults with diabetes
While I've never had a diabetic child, I did live with a diabetic for a while. I was vegan at the time and he generally ate whatever I fixed. At the time, I didn't know vegan diets, or at least the type of foods I was eating, would have any effect on his diabetes, but it ended up making quite a difference. I imagine the foods would work as well for a kid as they did for him, assuming they like 'em. He had Type 1 diabetes, I think, using insulin several times a day.
I don't necessarily think it was the fact the diet was lacking meat or dairy that aided in his diabetes so much as it was being mindful of the food I was eating because I always had to check labels and opted for healthier replacements to what I was eating before veganism, if I could.
My big thing was cheese. I loooove cheese. But when I eat cheese, I also want bread. And potatoes. And anything else that goes with cheese and is carby deliciousness, which is pretty much everything for me lol. So... when I stopped eating cheese and sour cream and such, I no longer wanted baked potatoes. I couldn't have chili cheese fries, etc... So I think that helped with the sugar a lot.
I also nixed white sugar as often as I could because it's often filtered through bone which is obviously not vegan. I did, however, start putting agave nectar in pretty much everything. This is a pretty good alternative for diabetics. As you know, there's a lot of debate over artificial sweeteners and the effects they have on the body. Beyond that, I'm just really not a fan of the flavor of aspartame. So.. agave nectar!
Agave nectar is a low glycemic index food... so even though it's super sweet (I use less of it than I would honey for the same job) it processes in the body over a longer period of time, so you don't get those blood sugar spikes. Totally not just for diabetes either... It really helps avoid those sugar crashes that make people tired and also maintaining a steady blood sugar level can help lose weight. Not to mention just feel better... You can get it in dark or light versions like honey. To me, the light version basically just tastes like sugar syrup with maybe a teeeeeny bit of honey-type flavor. The dark versions are a little more flavorful if you like it, and tastes kind of like caramel. Works in desserts, coffee, tea, whatever! I got mine at Wal-Mart beside the honey.
We also ate things like salads with a protein. I enjoy seitan, tofu, black beans. We ate a lot of black beans... Various veggies prepared every which way. Peanut butter (not on the salad, lol!) The biggest thing was to graze... keeping the blood sugar nice and steady all day long as much as possible. Of course, he still needed his insulin, he just had to use less. Stir fry with a protein is yummy too.
I also used vegan bread when we did eat it... I bought Arnold's bread. The wheat has a great smooth texture and is vegan. Significantly bigger loaf and cheaper than the “spiffy” wheats that are rougher and grainier. No added sugar in it either.
We also ate quite a bit of rice, which I thought would mess with his sugar more than it did, but as long as we didn't eat it too frequently, it seemed fine. Great with the black beans.
When his sugar started to get low, we always did peanut butter crackers.
What recipes do you use to help with diabetes?
What things will your diabetic child eat that helps?
I'll have to introduce Agave Nectar for her. I've heard of it as a drink but not as a condiment. I'm not a big fan of artificial sweeteners either :-( I am craving some beans lol This post reminded me that I have a lot of varying bags of beans to choose from for the next meal.