Halloween and Diabetes: Tips for Handling Treats
With just a few tricks in mind, Halloween can still be a treat for those living with type 1 diabetes. While children across the nation are going to parties, running from door to door, and eating chocolates and candy by the bagful, there are ways that Halloween can still be fun for children who don’t have the traditional treats in their diet. For some ideas to help make sure there are no real scares on the 31st and a list of carbohydrate values for common candies, please check out this article. Also, here are some Halloween Candy and Hypo Tips.
Halloween Candy & Hypos: Tips from Gary Scheiner, MS, CDE and Director of Integrated Diabetes Services, a Philadelphia-based practice specializing in coaching insulin users on intensive blood sugar control and advanced self-management skills via phone and the internet.
IMPORTANT: This information is not meant to replace the advice of your health-care provider. Before making any change in your diabetes management, consult your health care professional. The views of Mr. Scheiner are independent from those of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
If you inject: Halloween is filled with chocolate and caramel-containing candies. Though these may be tempting for treating your holiday lows, they may be more “trick” than “treatment” because the fat and dairy ingredients slow the conversion to glucose in the bloodstream. The best candies to use for treating lows are ones that list dextrose as the first ingredient, like SweetTarts, Runts, Smarties, Bottle Caps, Nerds, AirHeads, and Spree. These are easy to pack in a purse, backpack or briefcase for unexpected lows during the Halloween season.
If you use a pump: To prevent lows while “Trick or Treating” (yourself or with your kids), consider using a temporary basal reduction on your pump. This will keep your blood sugar from dropping while you do all that walking and bag-carrying. If you do experience a low, reach for candies that list dextrose as the first ingredient, like SweetTarts, Runts, Smarties, Bottle Caps, Nerds, AirHeads, and Spree. These convert into blood glucose very quickly and are easy to carry around.
Halloween Candy & Hypos Tips from Diabetes Specialty Center Care Series eNewsletter. For more information about DSC, please visit their Diabetes Specialty website.
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