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November 13, 2000

Daily Care

Question from New York, USA:

My 15 year old son, who has type�1 diabetes was in relatively good control until entering high school last year. He is quite athletic and has recently noticed that he can not run as fast as usual. He has gotten into the bad habit of checking his blood sugars less regularly than usual. Upon closer examination, his blood sugars have been running rather high. He has been eating more junk food since entering high school, and I feel as though he needs a complete overhaul. Because sports are very important to him, I'd like him to see someone who can relate to his dietary needs with regard to sports performance as well as his blood sugar control. I think an insulin pump may be asking too much from him as he'd rather not live his life around his blood sugars right now, and I understand that it will take him a while to regulate the pump and that will mean more finger sticks. Is there someone who might be able to help? Even a book or some literature would help.

Answer:

First of all, it is good to hear that your son is athletic. Being active is one way to help control your son’s diabetes. Keep in mind that he is a teenager, and that sometimes teenagers can be a handful. Being a teen is probably hard enough. There is one book that I would strongly suggest you might want to purchase for your son to read. It is geared toward teenagers: IN CONTROL: A guide for Teens with Diabetes by Jean Betchart, M.N.,R.N.,C.D.E. and Susan Thom, R.D.,L.D.,C.D.E. The second book deals with physical activity and exercise: The Fitness Book for People With Diabetes: A Project of the American Diabetes Association Council on Exercise by W. Guyton Hornsby, Jr., PhD, CDE

PL

[Editor’s comment: He might benefit from linking up with the International Diabetic Athletes Association.

SS]