My son who is 6 years old was newly diagnosed 2 months ago. He seems to be adjusting well. Any type of advice or tricks would be appreciated. From food to sports. A few questions I have, Does anyone have any on advice on integrating sports back into his life? What is the best way? Any low carb snacks I wouldn’t think to look for ?
Hi, @maddy95, and welcome to Type One Nation! I’m sorry your family got inducted into the Club No One Wants to Join, but we’re glad you’re here. You’ll find lots of caring, supportive, knowledgeable people on this site, and tons of resources for all the questions you don’t even know to ask yet!
You might start just by browsing around, looking at old threads. Up at the top left, if you click on “Forum,” you can then click in the drop-down for “categories.” Two that might interest you are “newly diagnosed” and “parents,” for example, but there are others devoted to food, exercise, etc., etc., etc.
You can also search the whole site if you type what you’re looking for into the search box at the top right. There have been LOADS of threads on low-carb snacks, for example. Type whatever you’re looking for into the search box and see what comes up!
Exercise is awesome for everyone, and people with T1D see its benefits more directly than most, I bet. Like everything else in your son’s life, it’s just gotten more complicated than it used to be, is all. It’s still awesome. It’s just going to take more planning than it used to. Browse around a bit, and then post back with more questions as they occur to you. It’s a ridiculously steep learning curve, I know, but you and your son are going to do great. Really.
@maddy95 Hi Maddy, and a Warm Welcome to the JDRF TypeOneNation Forum! you may have come to the right place for suggestions and tips; there are many parents visiting this site, like @srozelle , who have successfully guided their children through the early years of their lives with Autoimmune Diabetes [TID]. Thankfully, none of my children or grandchildren have diabetes so my comments will only be non-specific to your direct questions asked here; I am not a licensed medical professional.
I suspect that you may be rightfully worried and concerned by your son’s diagnosis and you know that you have much to learn. I will caution you to listen to your son’s doctor and diabetes care providers and NOT attempt to overburden yourself or your son with too much “future” material. What I will tell you, and you should tell this continually to your son, is that diabetes will NOT prevent him from living a full, active life - there is nothing he cant do because of diabetes. He should look more at the “Can do”, rather than I cant. Like your son, I was diagnosed when young, when doctors thought life expectancy was 10 years with diabetes, and in a couple of months I’ll be 80; yes, a full life of sports and business as well as raising a successful family.
Concerning sports. What he will need to do, is learn how to manage HIS diabetes to fit into the activity. T1D affects each of us a little differently. Snacks during athletics: in the days when I’d be skiing, both alpine and cross-country, my breakfast was “heavy” with carbohydrate for a person with diabetes [PWD], and I always had plenty of snack crackers with PB in my pouch; the same during my 25 mile bike rides a few days a week while in my 70s. Today on my usual 5 -6 mile morning walk I drank gatorade and carried snack crackers for safety - but that is MY body, and these days my insulin dose is very small.
In addition to reading what is posted here by members, I strongly suggest that you click “RESOURCES” at the top of this page, and then “Newly Diagnosed” - that will direct you to the JDRF website for plenty of sound advice. And keep asking questions here, and then offer your suggestions for others to read.
Thank you so much for all the info. I appreciate your advice on returning to sports/physical activity. I will definitely take a look at all the other resources available.
Welcome to the forum @maddy95 . Just wantedz you to know, I was diagnosed at age 3 and have been living with diabetes for nearly 60 years now with no major issues to speak of.
I suggest finding an endo who is board certified in diabetes, and experienced in trading Type1 in kids - things may be different than for adults who develop it. An office with a Diabetes Nurse Educator (there’s a new term now but I don’t recall what it is) and nutritionist is ideal. The nutritionist can give you guidance on food choices that will help keep glucose levels steady during exercise, and will educate you on carb counting, which is key. You can find info online but being new to Type1 you might want professional guidance. I do a refresher with a nutritionist now and then myself. The nurse educator may be more accessible than your doctor and so probably be the one to do training on devices (or set up training with a rep) and get deep into hands on practical management.
I have a diabetes tracker on my phone - I use Mynetdiary but there are several available - MuSugr and Sugarmate I think are popular ones. I can’t speak for the others but Mynetdiary has a huge did database. The carb counts are on target with the info on the items I select so I just enter the quantity and it logs my carbs, calories, etc. I can enter exercise, weight, BP, and of course glucose.
CGMs (if he uses one) allow you to download your readings to store. Some work with Bluetooth so they are updating without having to download via a cable - and you can share them with your doctor’s office. I came up in the time when we kept handwritten records😳 which the doctor looked over at each visit. This is much more efficient and if I need to get input my doctor or DNE can simply log in and take a peek.
There is a book titled Think Like a Pancreas. The author lives with Type1 and works in the diabetes field so he has a first hand perspective. It’s educational and a surprisingly fun read.
You will find lots of info on the forum - questions from people who are new themselves or have a child newly diagnosed. If you read something that seems to apply to your son I encourage you to use it as a discussion point as you work closely with your doctor on whatever it may be. Diabetes is about managing your own care - learning what to do on your own as things occur. However that comes with experience and practice. Learning takes time but it will come.
Wishing you all the best.
Just remember that you’ve got this! Luckily diabetes is something that is manageable. Everyday is different, so you just roll with it. My daughter was almost 5 when she was diagnosed. She has played a lot of different sports. Swimming was the one that was the toughest on her BG, it crashes her big time! She has done gymnastics, dance, karate, golf, tennis, basketball, and volleyball. Yep, she has tried them all. At 13 she is playing travel volleyball. She has a pump and takes it off when she plays (it keeps her from diving), the adrenaline will cause her BG to sky rocket, but then about 30 minutes later she will crash, so we have learned what works best for her. IF she crashes (low), Advocare Rehydrate Gel (https://www.advocare.com/store/product/p1403-rehydrate-gel) seems to work well for her. She gets very sensitive to sour, sweet, strong flavors when she goes low, but seems to like this one just fine and it works for her. Also the Dexcom G6 is wonderful! It sends her BG reading to her phone (so it has to be on the bench or somewhere close, sometimes with the coach), then it goes to the cloud, and I get the reading on my cell. So I can track her during sports and get her something if she has a sudden drop. But being active is great for them, just like the rest of us! They can do anything that other kids do, they just have to be a little more aware of how they feel and what their body is telling them. We also have to do more to watch it and help them. Y’all will get it all figured out, you will find what works best for him. This is now just a part of who he is! No different than his eye color.
One of my daughters favorite low carb snacks is Pepperoni Chips (microwaved pepperoni until it’s crispy) and fresh mozzarella.
I am totally telling my daughter to try pepperoni chips!
Tracie , thank you so much for all the great info. & your own experience, hearing everyone’s advice/stories makes me feel better. He will definitely LOVE pepperoni chips!
It’s nice to hear that he’s adjusting well.
You’ll find there are great resources everywhere. Here is a good start…
You’ll also find that it’s a lot of trial and error and what works for you might not work for others and vice versa. My advice is ask a lot of questions. Not sure how it is where you reside but here once diagnosed we are paired with an Endocrinologist, a nurse, a dietician and a social worker. All great resources but even if you don’t have a team of resources, talking with your Endocrinologist is a good start. He or she should have all the answers to your questions (well most of them
Exercise is important and affects diabetes for sure - again, discuss it with your doctor and see what he or she recommends.
In regards to low carb snacks, our go to is popcorn, nut butters and proteins like coldcuts (salami, ham, pepperoni slices etc…) and some low carb dairy too like cheese and unsweetened yogurt. It may sound like there aren’t many options but once you roam the grocery store aisles and read every label, you’ll find there’s quite a bit to choose from. And of course, home made treats are always great. Next time you make a batch of cookies, cut the sugar in half or add a cup of oats to substitute some flour…you’ll find that cutting back on sugar actually isn’t that bad. You get used to it.
One good piece of advice, if your son isn’t already on a CGM, please take some time and look into getting one. It’s literally a lifesaver. I admire all who have been able to manage their diabetes without one, but for me it’s just piece of mind.
Last but not least, talk about diabetes. Talk to him, talk to others…just talk about it. Bring awareness to people that think diabetes is caused by eating too much sugar…educate people…you’ll be surprised how so many people know little to nothing about diabetes…Let him know he can do and be anything he wants and that diabetes won’t stop him. In fact, he will be so in tune with his body, it’s actually pretty amazing to see. He’ll be able to tell you how he’s feeling before any other device does…There will be ups and downs - as with everything - no pun intended - but this will definitely make you stronger. You got this!