5 Tips for Parents of Children Newly Diagnosed with T2DM

Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (T2DM) is a growing epidemic among children and adolescents.  It is caused by both genetic and environmental factors and usually does not require insulin shots to control blood sugar levels.  It can be managed with a healthy diet and exercise.  Here are some tips:

  1.  A new diagnosis can be overwhelming at first and it may take time to adjust to a new regimen.  Keep your child involved in the same activities as before the diagnosis to help keep things consistent.
  2. Food and regular exercise are the best medicine.  Eat three well balanced meals and snacks every three hours to help self-regulate portion size and blood sugar and include at least one hour of physical activity daily.  Incorporate these healthy changes for a lifetime.
  3. Provide your child with supervision and support.  If the whole family makes healthy lifestyle changes, your child is more likely to do the same.  Empower your child to advocate for themselves with their teachers, friends, and medical team.
  4. Always include some fun!  Invite your child’s friends over to play, swim, cook, try new foods, and for other activities.
  5. Work with your Registered Dietitian and Diabetes Educator/Specialist to help set small, achievable goals towards a healthy lifestyle.

Reference:  American Association of Diabetes Educators (AADE)



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