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Hi there please help my 11 year old boy who has learning difficulties has recently been diagnosed with type 1 he was ok as he could eat any carbs under 10 but now he has been put on a 1-12 which he is really struggling with he just wants to be able to grab a snack without insulin but a typical child not fruit he use to be able to eat packet of skip crisps but now has to have 1/2 unit he’s so low at the moment I’m trying and not getting anywhere he is also autistic which isn’t helping matters please help with snacks he can just go and eat .


Well-Known Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 1
Hi @Astonalesha Im sorry to hear about your son’s diagnosis. It must be a stressful time for you. There’s a Parents section here that you might want to look through for support.

In the meantime, here are some snack ideas that have nominal carbs

Chunk of cheese plus cherry tomatoes, cucumber, peppers
Some nuts eg Brazil nuts or walnuts
Cottage cheese and raw red pepper on an oatcake or two (5g carbs per oatcake)
Hard boiled egg and mayo
Cold meats
Tin of tuna plus mayo

Unfortunately, Type 1 means your son will have to think a little more about food and won’t be able to just grab what he wants when he wants. That’s a really hard thing to get used to, I found. Personally, I prefer to have a small amount of insulin and eat more carbs for a snack, but I understand why this is hard for your son.

Have you asked about the possibility of an insulin pump? Apart from the fact it makes control a lot easier, it also means no injections, only a cannula change every 3 days.

I’m going to tag some parents in the hope one or more of them can help you more:

@stephknits @Thebearcametoo @Bronco Billy


Forum Host
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 1
Welcome to the forum @Astonalesha

Sorry to hear about your son’s diagnosis. It is difficult at any age.

As @Inka says with T1 if we want a snack which has carbs in some insulin needs to go in with it.
I can see that the list of carb free snacks might not appear so appealing to a growing youngster.

The suggestion of a pump is a good one, as it is so easy to give a quick Bolus for a snack. I know when I first went onto my pump I thoroughly enjoyed that bonus. It did mean I ate a bit more at that time as I was enjoying the novelty.

A book that might be useful to both you and your son is Type1 Diabetes in Children Adolescents and Young Adults by Ragnar Hanas. It explains things very clearly and is a great reference book.


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Relationship to Diabetes
Hi and welcome.

It’s difficult with kids as their insulin needs are frequently changing as they grow so things you can get away with at one stage won’t necessarily be true as they get older. What we do with our daughter (10) is give her bigger meals so she rarely needs to snack. She has twice as much breakfast as me and has a full meal including dessert for lunch and tea. It doesn’t always work because kids go through phases of being hungry all the time and if your son is anything like my 12 year old he may want to just eat constantly. We’ve found a few things that she can eat if she wants a snack - salted pistachios are a favourite - but generally I’d rather she ate more and had insulin.

If his levels are managed well and he’s eating meals roughly every 4 hours then you may decide that he can have a packet of skips or a couple of cheddars or something without insulin anyway and just correct it at the next meal. If you’re doing this keep notes of when he snacks though as it helps his diabetes team to know what’s affecting his numbers when they look at the data. If he snacks on cheese and things and has a lot then that may push his numbers up too so no foods are entirely free it just depends on the portion size.

It may work well for him to have clear rules of eating = insulin. You know him best. A pump may well be the best long term solution and you’ll need to speak with your team about that. It’s worth noting that here (Oxfordshire) we’ve been told that funding for a pump is automatic if children get it before they’re 12 and a little trickier if they’re older (they do find ways to make it happens but it’s not guaranteed). It’s worth you having a chat with your team about pump funding with this in mind although I would expect that his learning difficulties may be good reason for him to get funded even if he’s older.


Well-Known Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 1
Hi and welcome. Snacks are difficult and we just want them to be able to have what they want. My daughter is older, so understands very clearly why she just can't have something, but is still sad. Could you weigh out and bag up smaller versions of the snacks he likes that match with his new ratios. So a little bag of some skips, along with one of the carb free/very low carb suggestions so he still feels he is getting the things he likes. Perhaps you could get stickers to put on the bags to make them his special snacks?

Bronco Billy

Relationship to Diabetes
Hi. There's not much I can add to what has already been written above. I know he was diagnosed in April, so it's still very early days for everyone. You won't need me to tell you this, but he may take a little longer than most to get used to having diabetes, but it will happen. It's important to remember that when he and you are struggling. Once the new habits are established, I'm sure he'll be fine.