Having a child with diabetes is like having a constant fight with food, a never-ending stream of vetting every morsel that passes you child’s lips. Being aware of the carbohydrate value of every piece of food they may come into contact with. Knowing which food is high sugar release, will treat a hypo quickly, and which is slow carbohydrate release, so will keep them going when active.
Recently we have been trying out FoodMaestro which has been making life A little bit easier, and I want to share why I think this is a great app.
You see the body does different things with different types of sugar, some are like quick energy bursts and some are slow and steady, great for keeping energy up. As a parent of an insulin dependent teenager, I am fast becoming a mini encyclopaedia for carb values, ratio’s and sugar levels. These numbers take a piece of my brain space every waking and sleeping hour.
Even when Chris and I are away or out for an evening, there is a constant stream of texts checking sugar levels and insulin doses. It has become our norm; to keep our child alive and healthy it has had too. Don’t get me wrong we are not woe is me about this at all, that is the situation we are faced with and it could have been so much worse.
But there are moments that stump us every now and then, for us this is usually when we are out. And when Jack was younger at birthday parties. I am going to use an ice cream sundae as an example, because for Jack there are so many factors going on with an ice cream.
The sprinkles, Ice Cream, fruit and any additional sauce, all of these ingredients have a carbohydrate value and without physically going into the kitchen a looking at the labels, we need to work out how many carbs are in that ice cream.
FoodMaestro is a wonderful new app that allows you to create personalised dietary profiles for each family member to log allergies, food intolerance and lifestyle choices that affect their diet.
You can search for food products by name or category to find items that are suitable – analysing products by nutritional info and ingredient. This allows you to easily build lists of ‘safe’ foods and identify potential problems.
I have been putting this to the test and found it invaluable for working out the dreaded mystery carb value of the ice cream sundae, the app allows you to input and save data, scan bar codes of products to identify key ingredients.
This is wonderful if you suffer from a food allergy, or intolerance as you can set alerts which allows the app to identify if a product contains gluten, peanuts, wheat, or even how many spoon full of sugar in a product.
Food Maestro is great for meal planning, it allows you to search food and add it to shopping lists, which can be shared via Facebook, text message, twitter or email. This is ideal when the boys are staying at their grandparents as I can compile a list of low carb foods, or if there is a desert then Jack and I can work out a carb strategy for each meal, email the list onto grandma and they don’t have to worry or stress in our absence. All the working out is done.
Using FoodMaestro makes shopping easier and less stressful, saves all that time reading labels in the supermarket aisles, I can just go in with my list and shop like everybody else. The benefit is when we are out and about, Jack can find the ingredients of a dessert and work out the carb values quickly and easily, allowing him to enjoy a meal without worrying about calculating his carbs wrong.
FoodMaestro is all about promoting healthy eating, avoiding eating food that could be potentially dangerous, due to an intolerance or allergy. But also helping teens like Jack have normal childhood, allowing them to have occasional treats, but do that safely with all the correct information at hand. Because lets face it, a little of what you fancy does you good.