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From Miami, Florida, USA:

During a routine yearly checkup, my 12 year old son's blood test turned up that he had an elevated blood sugar level (I believe it was 160). We were told to bring him in for a glucose tolerance test, early in the morning, with an early dinner being his last meal prior to the test. The test again revealed a sugar of 115. It had apparently gone down but it was not normal. There is a history of diabetes in my family (my grandmother, 1 aunt, 2 cousins)and am concerned that my son might also have it. His pediatrician didn't really say much except that they were sending the blood work out for further testing. My question is this: What can and can he not eat during this time of uncertainty? I have looked at labels and have purchased things that do not contain sugar but almost everything contains flour or enriched flour. Please let me know what kinds of things he should eat and what he should stay away from.


A fasting blood sugar of 160 mg/dl is certainly abnormal; but in the circumstances it could have represented a stress response. The subsequent level of 115 mg/dl is right at the upper level of what used to be considered normal. New figures given at the last meeting of the ADA, however would now call this level within normal limits. In view of the family history, which of course may not be of the same kind of diabetes, further tests were warranted and I imagine that your son's doctor has asked for an antibody test. Just to make life difficult however, this test, which used to be considered definitive is now known to be negative in some diabetic children of Hispanic descent.

For the time being, I would suggest that you assume that your son is not diabetic and I would not restrict or modify his diet until you have firm evidence to the contrary. Even if he does turn out to be "pre-diabetic" you will not have done any harm by maintaining a conventional diet.


Original posting 13 Jul 97


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