Friday, July 16, 2010

Truth and Consequences

I try to teach my kids to eat healthy. Always have - even before D. When Grace was diagnosed, and we were in the hospital with the nutritionist she smiled when I gave her an example of a typical day of food:

Breakfast - low sugar cereal, milk, fruit, maybe eggs and toast, occasionally pancakes
Lunch - lunch meat sandwich on wheat with mustard, some sort of chips on the side, fruit, milk
Snack - granola bars, yogurt, pretzels, fruit, cheese and crackers, etc.
Dinner - protein, carb, veggie, milk, fruit

I asked what she was smiling at and she told me we weren't going to have to change our foods at all, just maybe some tweaks to adjust to the shots schedule.

Don't get me wrong - I'm not overboard crazy with health foods (not that that's a bad thing... it's actually quite admirable, it's just not me.) I simply never saw the need for cookies for a 10am snack at school. I don't give an all access pass to the snack cabinet. And we do have desserts, just not very often. I always noticed how the extra sugar after dinner made my kids go berserk right at bedtime. And berserk kids make for a berserk mommy. Not pretty. For anyone.

My philosophy was, and is, pretty much everything in moderation. If you're hungry, eat. Just make smart choices that will fill your tummy and give you energy. Now I find my kids actually prefer fruit as a snack. They love yogurt, cheese, and (my favorite) sunflower seed butter on wheat bread with banana on top - yum!

But it's hard. It's hard because they love the junk, too. It's hard for a 5, 7, and 9 year old to believe me when I tell them that potato chips, although extremely yummy and satisfying, aren't, in fact, healthy.

Now I have proof. Visual aids, in fact.

That proof comes in the form of Grace's blood sugar. Her little One Touch meter is our family's reminder of the quality of our food. When we eat well, she's usually in range. No problem. Then there are days when we go to a picnic (today) where she eats a cheeseburger (her nemesis), a small amount of potato chips (yikes), mac-n-cheese (oh boy), then later a chocolate chip cookie (this is not going to be pretty) and tops it all off with an ice cream sandwich (Good God!). Keep in mind that all these items were counted and bolused for. I even extended 30% of the cheeseburger bolus for 2 hours to account for all the fat.

What does she win? A big, fat, ugly 440!

My reaction? Well, duh! Of course she would go sky high. Look at the sh@# she ate!

I corrected her and she was down to 220 within an hour. I'll check her again soon and expect she'll be even better. Or maybe not. Who knows tonight.

But this is the balance I walk between letting her be a kid first and a diabetic second. We don't eat like this often. And as much as it makes my stomach turn into knots when I see that kind of number, I opted to use it as a teaching tool for all my children on the car ride home. "See," I said. "This is the proof that what we chose to eat today wasn't healthy."

I will try to learn how to better manage days like today. And hopefully Grace, and my other two, will learn that there's consequences to the food choices they make.

I just wish I didn't love cheeseburgers so much!


  1. Justin is a cheeseburger NUT!!! That is all he will eat if we go out. They don't seem to mess with him to much though. *phew! Now pizza and pasta. YIKES!

  2. Yup... Elise had a chocolate chip cookie for dessert tonight (after a turkey sandwich on whole grain bread), and her BG shot up into the 300s before bedtime.

    Stupid cookie.

  3. Great post and so very true!

  4. yep pizza and pasta are no nos and hubby hates that cause he would have pizza 3 times a week if I would let him . I never eat it and it makes him crazy but once a week and he says hey lets get a pizza and I say nah you go ahead just not me . He wont get it he says that is a waiste .I guess kids are like men you have to train them lol !!! great post btw !!

  5. All the good stuff is so bad. :(
    We had pizza tonight - holy guacamole! Nate LOVES it - but the bg is so crazy all night!!!

  6. Oh wow!

    Isn't it crazy the way certain foods effect people differently! On those rare occasions that we have pancakes...Matthew goes through the roof!

    Yikes! : )