Back to Ask the Diabetes Team Ask the Diabetes Team

From Michigan, USA:

My 18 year old son was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes about three months ago. since then he has kept his glucose in the 80-140 range. He has lost approximately 10 pounds and is already on the lean side of normal. He is constantly hungry and is afraid to eat because he thinks more food will elevate his glucose. He nows weighs 140 and is 5 foot, 10 inches. How many calories and carbs can he have per day? He uses lispro and is utilizing a sliding scale.


Basically, it seems that your son in excellent control but he is underweight. Usually individuals will gain weight when insulin therapy is begun, not lose weight. He really need to see a dietitian who works with folks with diabetes.

However to try to answer your inquiry, and keep in mind I do not know his frame size or activity level or what kind of basal insulin he is taking (NPH or Ultralente). If he is medium frame, I would estimate around 1700 calories to maintain his weight, but it looks like he needs to gain back those 10 pounds or even more (the charts suggest his ideal body weight to be about 165-170) so then calorie level should be about 2100. This does not take into account activity level or increased calories in case he is still growing.

As far as grams of carbohydrate, we usually suggest 50% of calories come from carb, so about 200-260 grams of carbohydrate, again depending on his total calories.

I hope that helps some. He has excellent blood glucose control, but he needs to live a normal life and his diabetes can work into that normal life. I hope he can see someone to help him further.


Additional comments from Dr. Deeb:

Sometimes individuals are afraid that to take more insulin means they are "sicker". Balancing insulin and food sometimes means more insulin. If he eats more and his glucoses rise, just take insulin.


Original posting 5 Oct 1998
Additional comment added 12 Oct 1998
Posted to Meal Planning, Food and Diet


  Back to Ask the Diabetes Team Return to the Top of This Page

Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:00
This Internet site provides information of a general nature and is designed for educational purposes only. If you have any concerns about your own health or the health of your child, you should always consult with a physician or other health care professional.

This site is published by T-1 Today, Inc. (d/b/a Children with Diabetes), a 501c3 not-for-profit organization, which is responsible for its contents. Our mission is to provide education and support to families living with type 1 diabetes.
By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use, Legal Notice, and Privacy Policy.
© Children with Diabetes, Inc. 1995-2018. Comments and Feedback.