Caring for your child with diabetes can be daunting. Fortunately kids with diabetes need not to be on strict diets. However, they need to pay attention on what they eat. They need to see to eat that they watch what they put in their plates because it allows them to maintain a healthy blood sugar level. Your doctor and dietitian are part of the team in keeping children with diabetes healthy. Carving a healthy meal plan will enable children to enjoy food without fearing that they will be suffering from high sugar levels. Let us take a look what that a great meal plan looks like.

What is in a meal plan?

A meal plan takes into consideration the foods that will comprise the three main meals and one to three snacks for the day. The goal is to have a consistent amount of macro-nutrients specifically carbohydrates at the same time per day. This would be easier to determine how much insulin is needed. A good meal plan should consider the right amount of food that will satisfy your child's hunger and guarantees the right nutrients that are essential for his/her growth. It is important to strike the right balance and consistency in a meal plan. A great meal plan should be pragmatic and practical. It should be considerate of the food choices of children after all they are kids.

How about blood sugar?

When we talk about blood sugar, people would react like, "that's the disease where you should not eat sugar?" This is a wrong notion made by most people. In fact, diabetic kids can still eat sugar. The caveat is that they need to monitor how much, when and the kind of sugar they eat. In fact the food you may be eating may not taste sweet but already loaded with sugars that can be harmful not only to diabetics but also for normal and healthy people as well. Learning how sugar works can help parents of diabetic children carve the right diet.

What's the fuss about carbohydrates?

When making a diet plan for diabetic children it can cause considerable anxiety and stress to parents. What is important when doing a meal plan is to have a close eye on carbohydrates. This is the only macro-nutrient that has a direct link in spiking blood sugar levels. Carbohydrates are found in a wide range of food types. It is the body's chief source for energy. What is important to know that there are two types of carbohydrates which are simple and complex carbohydrates. Simple carbohydrates are sugars that are released quickly into the body while complex carbohydrates take longer to digest. Simple carbohydrates should not be more than 10 percent of the daily calorie intake for children.

Do I need to focus on other food groups?

Yes. As part of a healthy meal plan you also need to take into consideration the amounts of macro-nutrients like proteins and fat. This is called an exchange meal plan. The plan takes into consideration the amount of calories and other macro-nutrients in each food group. It will also consider the portions of each food that would be eaten at various times during the day.

Do I need to pay attention on food labels?

Food labels have become easier to read. Anyone that is concerned about eating healthy can track the amount of carbohydrates and calories to track their blood sugar levels. Since your child will not be able to understand, it is up to you to decipher it for him.

Do I need to check with the doctor?

The doctor and the dietitian are essential partners for carving a great diet plan for your child. Always consult them if you have mapped out a diet plan for your child. They can make adjustments and proper recommendation on the kind of food your child needs to eat considering the situation. Again let them know if their recommendations are impractical and not pragmatic to your actual situation.

The bulk of the work is in the tracking. You need to be diligent in keeping tabs on what your child is eating. It may seem additional task on your part but monitoring your child's health on a regular basis can greatly spare you from much anxiety. This will prove to be the most important thing that will make your diet plan a success.

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