Apple Fritters and Juvenile Diabetes

Can you imagine having a child–or being a child–with a chronic illness that required shots every day and measuring every morsel of food in order to keep your child or yourself healthy? For more than 200,000 kids in America who have diabetes, which is the fastest growing disease in the U.S., tracking blood sugar levels and the food they eat is a way of life. According to some predictions, one in three Americans will have diabetes by 2030, so many of us, our friends, and our family members will face this illness head-on.

Jakob Latham, 11, of North Springfield, Virginia was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes last year. He says he still enjoys food, but has to put a lot more thought into what he eats and when. “To enjoy my favorite foods, I take insulin to cover them or I exercise a lot so I can have them,” he says. “Like before swim team I am usually able to have extra foods with sugar so I don’t have a low when I’m exercising.”  But he says having diabetes isn’t all bad news: “At school I get to skip the line at lunch.” 

Cookbook author, nutritionist and food educator Robyn Webb’s life was touched by diabetes as a child. “My cousin was diagnosed when he was 9 and it inspired me to help him and other people with diabetes, as he was so young and vulnerable,” she says.  Webb has made it her mission to make sure children (and adults) do not need to endure boring and bland diets with the other challenges that come with controlling diabetes. She has written a number of cookbooks filled with healthy and flavorful recipes for people who have diabetes.

Webb’s 2007 cookbook “You CAN Eat That! Awesome Food for Kids with Diabetes” (which, sadly, is no longer in print, but see below how to win a copy), is filled with mouth-watering recipes like Firecracker Chicken, Crispy Parmesan Chips, and Light as a Feather Apple Fritters (see recipe below).   She hopes to give people with diabetes lots of ways to put the joy back into cooking and eating.

Nutrition per serving: Calories 117, Calories from fat 13, Total fat 1.5g, Saturated fat .5g, Cholesterol, 53 mg, Sodium 67 mg., Carbohydrate 23g, Dietary fiber 1g, Sugars 7g, Protein 4g.

For more information, check out this cool site for kids with diabetes from The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International:

To win a copy of “You CAN Eat That” by Robyn Webb, leave a comment below by Thursday, February 24thth at 11:59 p.m. PST telling us how your life has been touched by diabetes. On Friday, February 25th, we will pick a winner from the entries below using One entry per person, please. US mailing addresses only. Good luck! (And don’t forget to subscribe to Kitchen Explorers by email so you don’t miss any of our delicious recipes and fabulous giveaways.) 

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