Sticky Notes - Managing Diabetes and Halloween
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Managing Diabetes and Halloween

October 27, 2021 by Emily Moore

As a person with diabetes AND the parent of two teens with diabetes, I’ve given a lot of thought to how to make Halloween easier – and potentially a whole lot more fun! – for families who are managing diabetes. 

First, think beyond sweet treats! Every year when the bags of Halloween candy start appearing on grocery store shelves, I think to myself: how else might we celebrate? There are SO many fun ways to celebrate Halloween that don’t involve eating gobs of candy! Consider instead: 

  • carving pumpkins 
  • visiting a haunted house or pumpkin patch 
  • going on a hayride
  • getting lost in a corn maze
  • playing a fun, new board game
  • offering one or two special chocolates instead of a fistful of the usual mass-produced ones 
  • hosting a costume contest
  • gathering fun candy alternatives to hand out
  • telling spooky stories
  • making a Halloween craft
  • watching a Halloween movie
  • signing up for a Sticky Fingers Cooking class!

Also, please educate yourself. No matter how “easy” some people make it look, diabetes is 24/7 work, with no vacations or mental health breaks. Your small, thoughtful gestures make it HEAPS easier. Here are three things I wish people knew about diabetes, in particular Type 1 Diabetes, that would lighten our load on Halloween:

#1. We can eat sweets, but we need to plan for it. And not all candy is the same. Cheat sheets like this are handy!

#2. Certain candies are particularly useful for treating low blood sugar. (Tip: they store well in the freezer for up to six months!)

  • gumdrops
  • jellybeans
  • gummy bears
  • skittles
  • starbursts
  • sour patch kids
  • hot tamales​​​​​​​

3. Sugar-free candy. Nope! Thank you, but no thank you. Sugar-free candy is not the magic bullet that people imagine it is. In fact, because it contains sugar alcohols (e.g., sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol) it can cause tummy woes when ingested in large quantities. Boo!​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

THYME for a Laugh

  • What do birds give out on Halloween? Tweets.
  • What did one ghost tell the other? To get a life!
  • What do you call a witch at the beach? A sand-witch.
  • What position does a ghost play in hockey? Ghoulie.
Yay for Halloween! Thanks for helping keep it fun for everyone!


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