T1D diet for child

A low carb diet has been brought up by T1Ds bio dad. Suggesting she be on a strict low carb diet where she is only needing to receive her lantus and not her fast acting throughout the day. I disagree with this but have read of parents who do it and seem to have “great results” I’m new to this as our daughter was diagnosed in June 2019. I do know her Endo recommended that children not be on a restricted carb diet. Are there any parents that do this diet or have any experience?

hi @Odavis7 Olivia, welcome to the Type One Nation forum.

I suppose you can make anything work with enough effort. It sounds as if your child’s father is suggesting a way to reduce insulin. Insulin is a natural hormone and is necessary for metabolism (for life actually). My 9 year old expends a huge amount of energy, the only way I could replace that energy is with a moderate to high carb load. If he was on a strict low carb diet, it is my humble opinion that he’d never be able to convert enough protein or fat and as such would suffer from low energy and potentially reduction in body muscle mass or possible limitation in the amount of muscle and fat he could build. Since he has many years of growing ahead - I would hesitate to do this.

Insulin is a dangerous drug. limiting the amount injected is a conservative strategy for avoiding possible low blood sugar, but I believe your s=child also probably needs energy AND additional reserve to build body mass.

I limit carbs, but i’m 53 and am not growing except for my belly when I eat too much.

Insulin needs are insulin needs. It;s neither good nor bad to use insulin, it is a dangerous but important growth hormone. It is absolutely required to survive. In other words there are clearly multiple ways to deal with this.

If I could offer advice, I urge you to get a pediatric nutritionist and endocrinologist and, with your child’s specific needs and lifestyle in focus, develop a plan that works best.

cheers good luck.

@Odavis7 Welcome Olivia to the TypeOneNation Forum! It is possible for your daughter to “live” on a low carb diet with only background [Lantus type] insulin, but that method has been proven to be MUCH less effective than the more aggressive combination of the Background insulin supplemented by meal-time Rapid-Acting insulin - the method prescribed for your daughter.

When I was diagnosed in the mid 1950s, I was put on what I call a semi-starvation diet with one shot of long-acting insulin and told my life expectancy was about 10 years. Not acceptable for me; after several years of having “problems” I began experimenting under a doctor’s guidance and we developed what is now called MDI - which is rapid-acting with meals supplemented with background insulin. During the 1980s a world wide study “DCCT Study” provided proof that MDI, wither with syringe, pen or pump, is the preferred method for treatment of TypeOne Diabetes [see link below].

I have led a full, active life with this method.

I am so thankful for the replies I have received. I really take to heart people’s personal experience with t1d over reading an article that God knows who wrote. Which is why I find these forums and groups to be the most wonderful thing ever!

You are welcome Olivia.

Keep in mind, and continually remind your daughter that she is NOT defined by her diabetes, and diabetes alone will not limit her. She is a person, a beautiful young lady who will live a wonderful and accomplished life while effectively managing her diabetes.

Indirectly [because diabetes has required me to be ‘more observant’ since I was in my teens] I have been blessed with a really good life and there isn’t much I haven’t accomplished. There are many other people here who will tell your daughter similar stories.

Oh I remind her many many times. We are in the process of getting her pump and she is so excited for that ! And I’m excited for her!

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She needs carbs as well as insulin to survive. Maybe only have dessert once a week instead of every day is a good idea and maybe not having pizza too often is a good idea too but she needs carbs to survive. I dont know how much carbs she usually eats meal but I’m 16 and I was told 40 per meal is good.
Also I went for a month eating no carb didn’t take any fast acting and only lantes I will never do it again I lost weight I was dizzy, exhausted, and constantly going low.

Yay! Excited for her! :blush:I got a tandem x2 pump 3 weeks ago and I love it controls my blood sugar so much better! I was around 200s and 400 on pens cause it’s only whole units and I was tired of going low so I just wouldnt correct but with the pump since I can correct with smaller units Iv been between 80s and 200s. :blush:

I am a type one diabetic, a type one does not need to change his / her diet just because that got diagnosed with type one. T1D’s usually go low when on a low carb/ no carb diet so I suggest not putting you t1 on a low carb diet. Let your t1 be a kid. I know from experience that it is super hard have T1D, you dont feel like your a kid, you dont feel you can do other things “normal” people can do


We follow not necessarily a low carb diet for our 6 year old, rather a “better” carb diet with great results. We have found new ways to make his favorite foods using substitutes that we know won’t spike his blood sugar. We certainly still allow him to be a kid, eat normal take out pizza here and there, but we try most of the time to feed him better choices. You will soon learn and find what foods will always spike your child’s blood sugar and for everyone it is different. While this better carb diet does tend to be lower in carbs, it is isn’t carb restrictive. We never set a number of carbs he needs to stay under for meals, we just make good choices for him to help manage his diabetes better. More vegetables, fats, and proteins and less packaged foods and foods like pasta and bread that knowingly will spike him. Best of luck!


Totally agree low carb diet made blood sugar control really difficult and stressful.