Diabetic Recpes For Toddlers

I’m looking for healthy, but easy diabetic recipes that are “toddler friendly”.

My one year old was diagnosed with type 1 (juvenile) diabetes just before her first birthday (a little over a month ago).

I have struggled to find things that are healthy for her that she doesn’t get tired of because I make them over and over. I have very little time, but would like to prepare fresh things for her. She has 6 teeth and does very well chewing.

Does anyone have ideas that they can share with me?

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Hannah @Cooking Manager - June 24, 2010

I’m so sorry to hear about your daughter. Special diets are challenging, mainly because you generally can’t use convenience foods or takeout as a backup.
A one-year-old can eat anything you can. The trick is to get used to making foods with whole grains, vegetables and legumes, since processed foods are so problematic. All of these take extra time to prepare. Actually, it’s not so much time, but planning. For example, put a big batch of beans up to soak the night before, then cook, and freeze in small containers. Use in salads, stir-fry and casseroles. Make small loaves of whole grain bread. Wash and peel vegetables in batches, then cook the next day. I know many diabetics also have celiac disease–has she been tested?
Complete Guide to Cooking Dried Beans from Scratch: http://www.cookingmanager.com/complete-guide-cooking-dried-beans/

Specific recipes:
Lentils with Onions and Garlic: http://www.cookingmanager.com/lentils-onions-garlic/
Summer chickpea stew: http://www.cookingmanager.com/cool-summer-chickpea-stew/
Chumus: 1 clove chopped garlic, 1 cup very soft cooked chickpeas, 1 tbsp lemon juice, 2 tbsp. sesame paste, 1 tsp cumin and enough water to make a spread. Mash or blend in a food processor Adjust seasoning and add salt if you like, and a tablespoon of olive oil.

How to Make Patties from Anything and Everything: http://www.cookingmanager.com/patties-anything-everything/

More ideas for toddlers: Feeding Babies Frugally: Make Your Own “Convenience” Foods for Your Baby: http://www.cookingmanager.com/mak-convenience-foods-babies/

Tips for making healthy homemade soups: http://www.cookingmanager.com/substitutes-soup-powder/

Hang in there and keep us posted.

Hélène - June 24, 2010

Always cut out the sugar in meal recipes. Feed her only whole grains. Serve veggies first when she’s hungry. These things alone will help alot. I know with insulin resistance it’s important to balance* my carb intake with protein so make sure ur serving proteins along with the whole grains, beans and whole, raw fruits (think of fruit juice as pop–way high in sugar and no fiber to slow it down in absorption). Veggie juices are great if you don’t put too much fruit juice with it. Try to get her used to this.
Water for all drinks, except the few times a day she has milk. My older kids were used to drinking cold water only–like me, now my younger kids can drink room temp no problem–cuz I learned how to lol.
*I always think to myself when I take a carb, now what am I having for protein with this?
Keep reading and talking with ppl. Ur education will benefit ur baby so much!

Mrs_Koehn - June 25, 2010

If you have a Facebook, you might connect to Garden of Life. I have Crohns Disease, which is way different, but they have helped me a lot. They’ll answer a lot of questions and post a lot of recipes and things that are helpful. I think they have a Twitter too. Another helpful thing is the folks on http://www.organicgrocerydeals.com . They are really super nice and helpful and a lot of health problems are addressed in the forums. We love new people, and you can find ways to change diets and save money – and trade coupons – while you’re at it.

Also, you might look into the best sweetener I’ve found outside of sugar and honey. Stevia. Now not all are created equal. Most of them have a bitter after taste. You don’t want to feed anyone, esp a baby in poor health, artificial sweeteners. Those are bad news from way back. But look at the NON BITTER Stevia made by NOW Foods. I get the big bottle from http://www.luckyvitamin.com and it lasts a long time. I’m allergic to sugar and honey, so I’m using that in everything. You can get little powdered packets too. It’s also supposed to help regulate insulin, so you might want to really look at that. I just got some for my diabetic grandmother to try.

This will be a huge challenge for you and your family, I really hope all the best and will remember you all in my prayers. HUGS!!

Amy Dalager - June 30, 2010

We have a 2 year old diagnosed with Type 1 at 22 months (7 months ago)–IT’S TOUGH!! Our docs have allowed us to feed her pretty much whatever she wants, as long as we count the carb grams in it and dose insulin accordingly. If your docs are like ours, you don’t have to make too many major changes to her diet. You don’t have to cut out the sugar. You just have to COUNT IT. You don’t have to serve only whole grains, although that maybe will be a future goal for her diet. You don’t have to cut out fruit juice from her diet. You just have to measure your servings and count up the carb grams. The last thing you want is unnecessary battles over food, when there’s already so much upheaval to your poor baby’s life! (We served our toddler real cake and real frosting with real ice cream on her 2nd birthday, 2 months after her diagnosis–her carb count for that meal was over 100 grams, but she got the right amount of insulin, stayed within her goal range for blood sugar, and had a great meal on a great day.)

It’s always harder figuring carbs on our good homemade food, compared to the prepackaged stuff with the nutrition label on the side. Go to sparkpeople.com–they have a recipe calculator where you put in the ingredients and amounts and they figure the nutritional information based on the number of servings per recipe. We’ve used that a lot! Our other resource that we got at the clinic the first day is a book from “the calorie king” which lists calories, fat, and carb count for about any food you can think of. There’s a website, too, if you search “calorie king”. We have two copies (one for the car) and use it almost every time she eats. I carry it along in my purse when I leave the house. I look up almost every food she eats. I don’t know how we’d get along with carb counting if it wasn’t for that book. It even has an extensive restaurant section.

Some life savers for appealing, carb-free snacks: string cheese, thinly sliced ham spread with whipped cream cheese and wrapped around a pickle spear, “sandwiches” layered like this: ham, sliced cheese, ham (fun cookie-cutter shapes make this more appealing).

Also, blood sugar remains more stable if the carb you eat is paired with a fat and a protein, too. So a peanut butter or sunbutter sandwich is going to result in a more steady glucose number than just a piece of bread. Cheese and grapes served at the same time is going to be more stable than just grapes.

I’m very wary of artificial sweeteners, although I’ve compromised some for now. (Sometimes peace in the house is worth 3 oz of diet coke!) I’ve experimented with stevia, too, and have used the white powder for koolaid-type drinks in the summer, when it’s fun to have something sweet to drink without needing to cover with insulin. I’m working on using it for other things, too, but I can’t seem to get the flavor right somehow…. I’m also growing some stevia in the garden–we’ll see if I can find a use for it!

I’m learning that anything that’s good for the rest of us is good for our diabetic, too. The only difference is that we need to keep track of carbs and dose insulin. It gets easier over time. The first few months are DEFINITELY the hardest!! Depend on your doctors–they know better than any of us! (Have you been able to meet with a nutritionist? We have, and it’s a huge encouragement to have someone so knowledgeable giving us advice!) Keep in touch (I’m on Facebook and I’d love to friend you up if you let me know you’re the mom with the diabetic toddler…) There aren’t too many type 1 toddlers around, it seems–we moms better stick together!

    Sarah Dillon - June 19, 2011

    HI, I have a toddler that is also diabetic (diagnosed at 8 months old). My question for you is I was under the impression for cake and frosting like you served your daughter on her birthday, I thought there was a special way to dose her insulin. What is your secret. I don’t know how to dose simple sugars yet. So if here cake and frosting etc. was 100 carbs, did you only dose her for 50? I would love your help in this matter. Thank you. Sarah

    Robyn - September 29, 2013

    My son is 21 months and was diagnosed 9/14 and it still hasn’t sunk in yet doing good with carb counting and glucose number have been normal except before lunch. I’m trying to figure out things he can drink during the day that is safe, every thing seems to have the alcohol sugar, or ascertain in it! The hospital but him on crystal light but it has it too! Thanks, Robyn

Suzanne - July 1, 2010

Kudos to Amy, great response!! My daughter was diagnosed at age 12 5 years ago, I thought that was a challenge! However helping a type 1 toddler must be tough. Hang in there, knowledge is your greatest tool. As she gets older she will tune into her body and be able to communicate when she is high or low, that’s a great help. Amy is absolutely right when she says that carb counting and then matching insulin dose is the way to go. Good luck and God bless!

I’m posting a great recipe we got from our diabetes educator/nutritionist: Corny “O”s — uncooked cornstarch is broken down slowly and helps prevent nighttime lows. per 1/2 cup serving 34G carb, 5G protein and 14G fat

1/2 stick butter
1/2 C chocolate chips
1/2 C peanut butter
5 C Cheerios
1 C cornstarch
1/2 C powdered sugar

Melt butter, choc chip and PB. Pour over cheerios. In a paper sack combine cornstarch and powdered sugar. Add Cheerio mixture and shake well.

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