Yes, I Can Eat Those Christmas Cookies

This post was originally published on Hugging the Cactus on December 12, 2018. I’m sharing it again now because the holidays are quickly approaching, and just because they look different this year, it doesn’t mean that cookies and other baked goods won’t be in abundance (baking is a great hunker-down activity, after all)! If you’re doubting whether a person with diabetes could or should eat cookies…then please continue reading this post. And excuse the absence of photos of the cookies described in the first paragraph, I didn’t want to trigger any drooling (‘cuz I totally would).

Check out that spread. You’re looking at an assortment of nine different kinds of Christmas cookies, all baked fresh by my mom, aunts, and cousins for our annual cookie swap this past weekend. And I can attest to the fact that each of them were effing delicious.

Now, if you’re thinking that people with diabetes can’t or shouldn’t eat cookies, sweets, or carbs in general…I’m here to (gently) tell you that you’re wrong. It’s a myth, a grain of utmost untruth, that people with diabetes cannot have carbohydrates of the sugary or starchy varieties. It’s fake news, y’all!!!

The FACT of the matter is that people with diabetes don’t have limits on what foods they’re able to eat. But there are matters of condition and preference to take into consideration here. First and foremost, carbs MUST be counted before they’re consumed. This is crucial because it determines how much insulin a T1D must inject. And then things like personal taste, diet, and comfort levels come into play that account for the variations in eating habits among people with diabetes. And that is the reason why you’ll meet some who are low carb, high fat followers, some who do not consume gluten, and others who do not exclude any particular food group from their diet.

I tried to choose a photo of Christmas cookies that weren’t absolutely delicious looking in order to avoid cravings…a much harder task than it sounds!

I’ve written a bit about this before, so why am I repeating it again? Because it’s worth knowing and accepting that everyone is different. Bodies respond differently to different stimuli, including the foods and insulin we put into them. And whatever works best for someone should be unconditionally tolerated, not judged, by others.

So if I want to eat a bunch of Christmas cookies as part of my Christmastime celebrations, then here’s my friendly reminder that I can – and you bet your bottom dollar that I did, and was very grateful for insulin after doing so.

Yes, I Can Eat Those Christmas Cookies

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Check out that spread. You’re looking at an assortment of nine different kinds of Christmas cookies, all baked fresh by my mom, aunts, and cousins for our annual cookie swap this past weekend. And I can attest to the fact that each of them were effing delicious.

Now, if you’re thinking that people with diabetes can’t or shouldn’t eat cookies, sweets, or carbs in general…I’m here to (gently) tell you that you’re wrong. It’s a myth, a grain of utmost untruth, that people with diabetes cannot have carbohydrates of the sugary or starchy varieties. It’s fake news, y’all!!!

The FACT of the matter is that people with diabetes don’t have limits on what foods they’re able to eat. But there are matters of condition and preference to take into consideration here. First and foremost, carbs MUST be counted before they’re consumed. This is crucial because it determines how much insulin a T1D must inject. And then things like personal taste, diet, and comfort levels come into play that account for the variations in eating habits among people with diabetes. And that is the reason why you’ll meet some who are low carb, high fat followers, some who do not consume gluten, and others who do not exclude any particular food group from their diet.

I’ve written a bit about this before, so why am I repeating it again? Because it’s worth knowing and accepting that everyone is different. Bodies respond differently to different stimuli, including the foods and insulin we put into them. And whatever works best for someone should be unconditionally tolerated, not judged, by others.

So if I want to eat a bunch of Christmas cookies as part of my Christmastime celebrations, then here’s my friendly reminder that I can – and you bet your bottom dollar that I did, and was very grateful for insulin after doing so.

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The Cookie Conundrum

Merry Christmas, dear reader! I hope you enjoyed a wonderful holiday yesterday. Thank you for your continued support of my blog. I’m looking forward to continue writing in the new year! Enjoy this new blog post about my favorite food weakness this time of year.

Hi, my name is Molly, and I have an addiction to cookies.

Not just any kind of cookies, though – Christmas cookies, to be exact. I think my obsession with them truly took shape when I was in eighth grade. That’s when my aunts, cousins, and I gathered for our first annual Christmas cookie swap, a joyous occasion during which we spend an afternoon sampling cookies we’ve baked. It’s just as glorious as it sounds.

Unless you’ve got diabetes, of course.

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Bags and baskets filled with sweet little sugar bombs (A.K.A. cookies!!!)

I say that because it seems no matter what I do, my blood sugar always ends up high after partaking in the cookie consumption. And I’ve tried many different strategies to combat it, including:

  • Pre-bolusing
  • Breaking cookies in half to cut down on the carb intake
  • Running a temp basal rate
  • Exercising pre- or post-swap, depending on my blood sugar

I’m fully aware that I don’t HAVE to eat the cookies – I could go to the swap and watch everyone else try them and plaster a fake grin on my face – but honestly, how miserable does that sound? I fully believe that just because I have diabetes, it doesn’t mean that I should deprive myself. And as a disclaimer, I’m not sitting there wolfing down cookie after cookie like I’m the Cookie Monster: My family sets out just enough so that each person can try one cookie from all participating bakers. So usually, accounting for all the cookies I split in half, I eat approximately 6-7 whole cookies (which vary in size but are typically no larger than 3-4 inches in diameter). All that said, I still account for at least 45 grams of carbohydrates when I bolus for the cookies, which should have me covered…

…in theory, anyways.

Hence, my cookie conundrum, which occurred yet again when I participated in the 2017 swap. I spent a solid few hours in the late afternoon and early evening battling blood sugars in the high 200s and low 300s, which proved to be extra challenging without my CGM’s aid (I had to remove it because the dreaded ??? appeared and wouldn’t go away for several hours). But I handled it: I managed to get my numbers back down, try an array of fabulous cookies, and spend an afternoon with my wonderful family members.

Cookie conundrum overcome, if you ask me.