Trick or Treat or Insulin Shock? Diabetic Children and Halloween
To kids, Halloween usually means candy, candy and more candy. However, for children with diabetes, Halloween can be a physically dangerous and an emotionally volatile time. The image of having to throw away a child’s trick or treat candy is heart wrenching.
Experts at Fit4D; a personalized diabetes coaching service, has put together critical tips that will allow children with diabetes to enjoy Halloween and most importantly allow them to keep their loot.
If your child is invited to a Halloween party, call ahead to find out the time of the party and the menu. This will allow you to plan accordingly for the day’s meal and/or medication adjustments.
Be sure to communicate the meal plan to your child and the person hosting the party so everyone will be informed.
If your child is trick-or-treating, it is important to know how many carbohydrates are in each piece of candy to appropriately include it into your child's meal plan. You can find this by reviewing nutrition labels in the stores or you can utilize online nutrition fact finders such as Calorieking.com.
Make a game instead of just taking away part of the hard earned candy. If your child comes home with a lot of candy, have a non-food item swap. For example, you could swap a stuffed animal or music download for 5 small candy bars and 4 pieces of gum.
If your child experiences low blood glucose, consider letting them choose a safe piece of non-chocolate candy from their bags that you know is equal to 15 grams of carbohydrate. Be sure to retest your child's blood sugar to ensure that it has come up to a safe range.
Most importantly, be safe and have fun! Diabetes does not define your child; it is just one part of their lives. They can participate in all the activities you would normally let them participate in without diabetes; it just takes a little more planning.
Written by Debby Johnson - Certified Diabetes Educator and Fit4D Nutrition Coach
Picking up where the doctor leaves off, Fit4D is an online personalized diabetes coaching service dedicated to providing the highest levels of educational and emotional support for those living with type 1, 2, or pre-diabetes