13 August 2019

Featured in Diabetes Daily "10 Low-Carb Back-to-School Snacks"

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So I guest authored my first article in Diabetes Daily today, and I'm super pumped so had to post it on my site too. 😁

I also have some discount codes not shared in the article:

24 count Crayola? Check. Pink Pearl eraser? Check. Expo dry erase markers? Check. There’s no doubt about it, back-to-school can take a lot of preparation, but back-to-school for families with children with diabetes adds an extra layer of complexity.

Wouldn’t it be nice if prepping for a school year with diabetes was as easy as the other line items on your back-to-school list? Unfortunately, there’s no foolproof solution to check the box off that line item, but there are snacks that can help children maintain normal blood sugars. I’ve gathered ten great-tasting, blood sugar-friendly snacks that children of all ages are sure to enjoy, whether for snack time, as part of their lunches, for classroom celebrations, or as after school snacks.

Even if your child with diabetes doesn’t follow a low-carb lifestyle, incorporating a low-carb snack here and there can make your life a whole lot easier. It can also help give them more time running to the monkey bars and fewer visits to the nurse’s office to treat highs and lows.

1) Low Carb Oven Cakes and Cookies

Is it me, or does it seem like there are more birthday celebrations than the number of children in the classroom? Of course, you want your child with diabetes to join in the festivities, but wouldn’t it be nice to eliminate the headache that can come with crazy blood sugars following those celebrations? Good news! Low Carb Oven makes homemade mini bundt cakes and cookie bars that are sugar-free, gluten-free, and certainly better tasting than whatever the school is serving. They freeze super well too, so you can simply pop one out the morning of an upcoming celebration, and your child is all set!

My personal favorite cake flavor as an adult is Lemon Poppyseed, but as a kid I’d probably have been crazy for the Vanilla and Triple Chocolate. The desserts are only 2-3 g net carbs, and most diabetics find that Low Carb Oven desserts don’t affect their blood sugar much. You may not even need to bolus!

If your school doesn’t allow peanuts, some of their products are peanut-free. Nut-free school? Maybe use them for treats off-campus, such as at birthday parties (because let’s be honest, there also seem to be more birthday parties than kids).

2) Quest Nutrition Chips

Who doesn’t love a good crunch? Leading chip brands may not have a ton of carbs compared to other popular snacks at 15-25 g per bag, but wouldn’t a five-gram total carb chip option be nice? Quest makes chips in tons of flavors, but my personal favorite is the Nacho Cheese flavor. Think of them as blood sugar friendly Doritos.

And another great part? Normal bags of chips aren’t all that filling. The Quest chips have around 20 g of protein per serving or so depending on the flavor, so they’re sure to delay the amount of time it takes before you hear “I’m starving.”

3) High Key Snacks Cookies

High Key Snacks makes my absolute favorite blood sugar friendly packaged cookies. They could disguise as Mini Chips Ahoy in all aspects except their nutrition facts. Forget the high fructose corn syrup and other ingredients you can’t even pronounce; these only use natural sweeteners such as stevia, erythritol and monk fruit. They are crunchy and just the right amount of sweet. At just 2 g net carbs per serving, I can even get away with no bolus for their cookies.

These come in chocolate chip and snickerdoodle. Both are great, but I am definitely partial to the chocolate chip ones.

4) Kiss My Keto Gummy Bears: Use code CKK at this link to get 10% off! 

So at the time I’m writing this, Kiss My Keto is actually sold out of gummy bears. Not very helpful for your immediate purchasing decisions, I know, but they’re sold out with good reason: they are awesome and super easy on the blood sugars. From the label, they may look high carb, but it’s nearly all fiber and barely budged my blood sugar level without any insulin.

Plus the cute little bears are naturally colored. Much better than red 40 and sugar-laden bears! Each gummy bear pouch only has 54 calories too, so it’s a great snack if your child is not actually hungry but wants something to nibble on.

5) Magic Spoon Cereal

Are you doing a double-take at the world cereal? Don’t worry, this cereal isn’t the nightmare cereal you’re probably used to. Even for the best sugar surfers among us, cereal is notoriously known in the diabetes community as one of the hardest foods to bolus for. Magic really is an appropriate adjective for the cereal; it’s ridiculously easy to cover with insulin. Each serving has only 3g of carbs but packs in 12g protein. It’s also gluten-free and has no artificial ingredients.
There are four yummy flavors to choose from: cinnamon, fruity, frosted, and cocoa. They sell a variety pack, too, if you want to offer your child some variety, or better yet, mix the flavors together.
6) Lily’s Sweets Peanut Butter Cups

You might be familiar with Lily’s for their chocolate bars, but what many people are less familiar with are their more recently launched peanut butter cups. If your child with diabetes loves Reese’s as a sweet treat, these are definitely an awesome substitute. They’re super convenient to send off to school too because each peanut butter cup comes individually wrapped.
The peanut butter cups come in milk and dark chocolate flavors. I’ve been a milk girl since childhood and always will be, but I can assure you both are great.
7) Notty Protein Chocolate: Use code CAROL27 at this link to get 10% off!

Yes, another chocolate recommendation right after Lily’s, because I consider them to be quite different (in fact, the biggest similarity is that they are both delicious). Notty is high protein chocolate with no added sugar. It’s more bark-like than bar-like. Except whereas Bark Thins have 21 g net carbs and 11 g of sugar per serving, Notty has only 3 g net carbs and 1 g of sugar. Notty packs in 11 g protein per serving too, so it’s not just empty calories.
They have so many fun flavors. Fluffernutter is my personal favorite, and if I had to guess, I’d say it’d probably be the number one hit among kids too. Other flavors include peppermint bark, cold brew, lemon berry, and salted almond.
8) Curly Girlz Candy
Curly Girlz Candy
Like the idea of a blood sugar-friendly candy alternative but need something nut-free? Curly Girlz Candy makes some awesome sugar-free hemp brittle that doesn’t contain nuts. The brittle contains super low glycemic plant-based sweeteners. Now I know hemp brittle may not sound like the most kid-friendly option, but it’s buttery, crunchy and has a cinnamon flavor. They even sell “Snacker 2 oz” bags of candy on their site that are perfect for back-to-school.
Other sugar-free candy offerings on their site include pecan brittle, caramels, coffee toffee, almond toffee, pecan clusters, and coconut macadamia bites.
9) Smart Baking Company Smart Cakes

Smart Cakes are light, fluffy cakes that I personally don’t need any insulin for. They have 0 g net carbs. The carb count on the label all comes from fiber and erythritol, which is a non-glycemic sweetener.
Each individual cake is only 38 calories! Another cool thing about these for school is they can stay at room temperature for 120 days, so they can easily be stashed in a classroom cubby and taken out as needed.
Flavors include cinnamon, lemon, chocolate, raspberry cream and orange. Lemon and cinnamon are my favorites. I will say that the texture and consistency of these are not like birthday cake, and nor do these cakes have icing. The texture and taste are really good, however, but it’s more snack-like or even breakfast-like than dessert-like in my opinion.
10) Keto Krate: Use code KRATE15 at this link to get 15% off!

Hopefully, this suggestion isn’t considered cheating since it’s not a snack itself–but rather a snack subscription. I absolutely love Keto Krate because I get to discover new blood sugar friendly snacks each month. Low-carb snacks can be very expensive to buy, and Keto Krate allows me to sample everything before I commit to a bulk order of a particular product. Plus, you can use code KRATE15 for 15% off your subscription!
Their boxes are always aspartame-free and maltitol free. As a heads up, I will say not 100% of their snacks are grab-and-go ones; occasionally there’s a mix or something that needs cooking/preparation. But most of the snacks come ready to stuff in your child’s backpack.
Hopefully, this list makes back-to-school diabetes management a bit easier for you and your child. And who I am kidding, these snacks are just as yummy for adults, so no judgement here if you eat some before they make it to the lunchbox!

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