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Confessions Of A Former Child With Diabetes And Unusual Eating Habits

Growing up, we had these large, potted plants in our dining room, within throwing distance from the dining room table.  (Stick with me – this is an important detail.)  The plants were big and had wide, draped leaves and they made the corner of the dining room look like a veritable jungle.

Also, these suckers were really convenient for hiding food.

When I was little, the “diabetic diet” school of thought was based on the exchange program.  This meant that my meals were structured around my calorie needs and the needs of my (then) peaking insulin doses.  An average dinner would include one meat exchange, two starch exchanges, a dairy exchange, a fat exchange, and a fruit exchange.  (Exchange, exchange, exchange.)  When I was on insulins like Regular, NPH, and Lente, I needed to consume these portions in proportion, or I would end up with a very high, or very low, blood sugar.

So my mother (bless her anecdotal-medical-degree’d heart) would carefully measure out these exchanges and that would be my dinner.  EXACTLY one meat exchange, and those two starches, etc.  She worked very hard to make sure my meals were calculated and well-balanced.

And in response, I would hide my vegetables – aka “gross things” – in the dining room plants.

I know she knew I was doing this, because someone was scooping out the discarded broccoli every few days (Maybe it started to smell?  Even the best broccoli starts to smell like fahts eventually …) and putting a little more potting soil in there.

If my then nine year old self knew what her thirty-two year old self would be eating the “gross things” BY CHOICE, I think I’d hit me in my head.  Because my new favorite lunch snack is a sliced up avocado, sliced up egg whites, and balsamic vinegar dressing.


“EW!” Says nine year old me.

“Yum!” says older me.

And way-in-the-future me reads this archived blog post and says “Don’t make me turn this spaceship time machine around!  Stop your bickering!”

*This blog post was originally published at Six Until Me.*


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