I need breakfast ideas

I don't know what to give my daughter for breakfast.  She is always insisting on eating the

sugary cereals like coco puffs, Frosted Flakes, etc.  I have asked my nutrionist MANY times on what to give for breakfast, and she keeps on telling me " give what you would have given before".  I would have given her pancakes with syrup before!!!  I need some adivse on what to give.  Sometimes her glucose level is high in the mornings and I am so confused on what to give her to eat.  What are some good cereals?  And also what are some good snacks to give also at school. 

My daughter has been diagnosed for 2 years.  Each time I go to the clinic and ask for a healthy meal plan,

the nutrionalist says; what ever you want. 

Hi Shazia.

My son, Brandan, has a problem with certain cereals making his sugar spike as well. (Like the Cocoa Puffs and Frosted Flakes you mentioned.) Every child is different, but Brandan can eat Trix, Apple Jacks, and Cheerios without trouble. "Aunt Jemima" has a "Whole Wheat Blend" pancake/waffle mix that we make pancakes with and there are a few sugar free syrups to choose from. Brandan's favorite breakfast food is Nutrigrain Eggo Waffles with blueberries, also made with whole wheat.

Brandan's BG almost always spikes when he eats white bread, regular waffles, etc. Whole wheat and grains is what I look for in everything. Brandan's nutritionist is the one who told me about the pancake mix.

Good luck to you. :)

We encourage our daughter to have higher protein breakfasts- bacon and eggs or a fruit smoothie are great choices especially if she wakes up high.Another not so sugary and filling option is oatmeal with berries and brown sugar. It's filling, yummy and healthy. Plus by adding the brown sugar yourself, you can control the sugar amount, rather than having to be stuck with what Kelloggs decided. If your daughter only wants "bready" things,think mini. Kelloggs makes Eggo brand frozen mini pancakes, and waffles. That way, you can do better portion control. Don't forget to use "lite" low-carb maple syrup.

But it's not just what your child eats. It's also how you administer her insulin.

The first few years with diabetes, breakfast had always been a challenge for us. There's a period of insulin resistance that naturally occurs in the early morning called the "dawn effect." Sometimes this gives us relatively high blood sugar levels which take an unusually large amount of insulin to bring down. Once we had Cassie on the pump we were able to adjust with slightly higher basal rates and a different insulin to carb ratio for her breakfast bolus. And here's the magic step that put everything together- we gave her the breakfast bolus (around 30 grams worth) about 45 minutes before eating. The breakfast pre-bolus usually meant that upon waking, we'd grab the glucometer to check; do a correction bolus if she was high; then also tack on a 30 gram "breakfast bolus." At times, we'd get into trouble if she wasn't hungry once she got to the table. At that point we'd try to load her up with really sugary things like orange juice or a even candy.

Good luck shazia!

~ Red

A high protien breakfast is always good.  I like the yogurt and fruit idea, smoothie.  My daughter likes the Kashi brand cereals.  They have lots of fiber and no high fructose corn syrup.  The cereals our kids eat are not good for them, maybe as a treat.  We also do whole wheat pancakes and waffles, I add flax to them. 


Good luck--I know it is a battle to give them healthy food they like.



Thanks for the advise. Breakfast is very challenging especially when her sugar level is very high in the mornings.    What fruit smoothie do you make for your daughter.  What do you add in the smoothie?

I've heard different opinions of " no sugar added" products.   Instead of the no sugar added syrup, Is it better to give one teaspoon of whip cream? 

She wants something on top of her pancakes. 

In the mornings when her sugar level is high, I adjust her insulin.  I fell that for a 10 year old she is on too much insulin.  I ask the doctor and he says

there is no amount of insulin.  Each individual is different. 

It's been 2 years and I am still confused on a lot of stuff.



For the most part I don't bother with "no sugar added" or "sugar free" because the products still have the same amount of carbs. A couple of exceptions are sugar free jam and preserves, they only have 5 cbs per serving, way less than regular jelly, and sugar free syrup which has 4-8 cbs per 1/4 cup, depending on the brand. I don't know about the whipped cream, never tried it. Brandan likes to put peanut butter on his waffles, something he picked up from me. :)

Brandan also has high BG between breakfast and lunch because his Levemir (long acting insulin) doesn't start working hard until the afternoon, so I give him more Humalog for breakfast than any other time of day. This is one of the problems we hope to eliminate when he gets his insulin pump.

We have also had a lot of problems with breakfast.  We've tried adding protein in various ways (PB, nuts, cheese stix, eggs) as well as bolusing him at least 15 mins before he eats.  We still end up with bg spikes in the 400s an hour or so later.  It is frustrating for sure.  

For pancakes, we use whipped cream (everything tastes better with whipped cream!) which has 0 carbs for 2T.  And for waffles and french toast, he will sometimes use the sugar free syrups (which are really are gross) or I will dilute real maple syrup with 1/2 water and he doesn't know the difference!  

[quote user="DuskMom"]And for waffles and french toast, he will sometimes use the sugar free syrups (which are really are gross) or I will dilute real maple syrup with 1/2 water and he doesn't know the difference!  [/quote]

We like sugar free Mrs. Butter Worth's . Tastes like regular syrup to me. ; )

Casie always runs high for breakfast, especially if she eats cereal.  The funny thing is if she eats non-sugary cereals (like Cheerios, Kix) she will be anywhere from 300 to 400, but if she eats the sugary cereals she does not go over 200!  Pancakes (any kind) just send her through the roof, and takes us forever to get her back down.   When she eats cereal we do the bolus 30 to 45 minutes before she eats.  This does not make her numbers normal, but at least better.  Even if she eats eggs and bacon for breakfast she runs higher.  The doctor says she is resistant to insulin in the mornings.  A lot of mornings Casie will have breakfast burritos (whole wheat tortillas), but she does love the cereals and I try to let her have them as much as I can.  Then at snack time for school I give her the lower carb snacks.  She likes graham crackers with peanut butter,or crackers and cheese.  The frustrating part is once I find something she likes and does not send her numbers soaring, the wind will blow the wrong way and it all changes again!

Hang in there,


We were just diagnosed last month. We haven't changed a thing. My son gets up a half hour before school. So, we test and sit down and eat a small bowl of cereal, a bowl of cut up melon, a hard boiled egg, and some orange juice. That's all he has time for. I give him his injection while he's eating. On the weekends we do it up much bigger. Sometimes it's french toast and sometimes its pancakes on Saturday with a fried egg and either bacon or sausage. On Sundays it's bacon, eggs, sweet potato hashbrowns, and toast with jam. I haven't tried the sugar free jams or syrups yet. We're still working our way through the stuff we normally eat here. I did buy Mrs. Butterworths sugar free syrup though. Can't wait to try it. Some of the cereals my son has always eaten are: Puffins, Mini Wheats, Hone Nut Chex, Quaker Oat Squares, Cinnamon Life, and Cocoa Krispies. There's never any problems with his BG going up either. I know every child is different. I hope you can figure out the right combination. Also, make sure you're setting a good example too, and eat what she eats. She won't know any different about good food choices or bad ones then. She'll just be modeling you. Good luck!

We went through every sugar free syrup the store had and they were all disgusting (too much aftertaste) UNTIL Walmart started carrying sugar free IHOP syrup. It really does taste the closest to regular syrup…so much so that even my two teenage non-diabetic daughters don’t complain. We’ve found that letting our little boy be a little boy was the best course of action. I’ve never really been big on chocolate for breakfast anyhow, but have found that chocolate is one of those foods that causes a major spike in my son’s b/s numbers. If your child wants frosted flakes then buy the 25% less sugar version. Personally, its my sons favorite food, with 1/2 a banana thrown in. The Fiber One/Fiber Plus cereals are always a good idea too because you can substract so many carbs due to fiber content. When we were in the hospital our nurse told us to practice “real world” diabetes. He can have anything he wants, just dose him accordingly. As she told us, if we start out treating him differently, or not letting him have certain foods b/c of the diabetes then he’ll start resenting it, which could cause problems as they go through puberty.

I'm not a big fan of sugar free anything, however there is a syrup that we use and my son loves it. There is nothing in it. No carbs, fat, calories, etc. it's from walden farms. They do have a website. Some stores sell their product. Some of the salad dressing are really good. They also have chocolate syrup that my oldest, non diabetic, uses to make chocolate milk. Walden farms has a lot of products. We really only use the syrup and salad dressing.

We do crock pot steel cut oats quite a bit. Super easy and it breakfast for 5 days! The whole wheat eggos are good for days you need something easy. We have also switched to unsweetened almond milk for cereal and smoothies. Hard boiled eggs, whole wheat english muffins, we haven't changed much for diabetes, and we almost never use sugar free products. As for syrup, we use the pure maple syrup. Its around 14g/sugar per tablespoon, but because its the real stuff, thats about all you need!

We had already changed our diets to include less sugar before his dx, with the exception of the syrup which was afterwards. I know a lot of parents are saying that they don’t do sugar-free anything, but you really have to find a balance. Our endo’s dietician wants us to stay around XX amount of carbs (of course there are exceptions) because it’s best for his age/size and there seems to be a growing concern about obesity in diabetics. With that being the case with him, I would rather (for example) 50 of his 60 carbs cone from whole wheat pancakes with 10 coming from the syrup instead of 50 carbs of nothing but syrup that will spike and crash. He still gets Halloween candy and such, it’s just added as part of a meal so there’s protein and vitamins to balance it out. I see it kind of like picking your battles. Let them have the foods they love (in moderation of course) but balance it with something better for them like gradually switching to fat-free milk, sugar free products or whole-wheat products. It takes time to find what works best for each family and each child. But remember that diabetes affects the entire family, not just the child dx’d, so it’s something you have to work out together.

Hi Shazia,

My son's sugars are also very often high in the morning due to the "Dawn Phenomenon".    I would think cereals like Rice Krispies, Frosted Mini Wheat, Cheerios even Apple Jacks would be good in the morning.  IF she likes oatmeal there are flavoured oatmeals.

My son never really liked sugary cereals too much or syrup as he is very finicky.  Some things he has eaten for breakfast include:  toast, muffins, raisin toast, waffles (again, no syrup just butter), pancakes (no syrup), once in a blue moon a pop-tart (mostly on vacation when I know he will be active).

He always has a glass of milk for protein.  He sometimes has eggs or bacon for protein as well as the milk.

Maybe you could ask her if she would like maybe a home made muffin or something else homemade (I make my waffles homemade and put in a little sweetener and vanilla so they are tasty without syrup for my son and myself (we are both Type 1) or maybe homemade banana bread.  I try to make some of the items so I know what the nutritional value is.  Maybe a bagel/cream cheese or an English muffin with some butter and jam, croissant (not actually high in carb-just high in fat but delish).  

Just always try to add protein like milk, yogurt, cheese, bacon, cream cheese, deli meats, etc... as this will help keep her blood sugar more stable.

Our dietician also does not restrict anything my son wants to eat.  What is most important are his blood sugars so if they are in a good range, then he is free to eat what he wants within the range of carbs he has been given per meal.  

Good luck!!!

We stay away from the sugar free not only cause its not good for you, it's because there is too much sugar alcohol in it and for young kids its hard on their stomach. Its like a laxative.  Plus there are usually more carbs in the sugar free stuff than regular stuff.

I agree with teameddie, most sugar free products have a laxative effect so we either use the real stuff in moderation or omit it.  THe only items I sometimes use are sugar free puddings but these are  made with splenda.  Some of the other items like mannitol, sorbitol or anything ending in "tol" has a serious laxative effect.

We've never really had any issue with the laxative effect you guys mention (and believe me sometimes that would be welcome with my child) but like I said it really is about the individual person and family and where your balance lies.  I definitely wouldn't recommend anyone go completely sugar-free (except T2s I guess who need it more than most), but especially not growing, active children. We found out from experience that carbs don't necessarily keep an active child UP immediately after eating. (Which isn't good when they go directly to PE after lunch.)  

As others mentioned, there are most times more carbs in the sugar-free/light stuff, but you have to take into account how much you'll be eating in one serving. Both light cool-whip and light mayo have 1-2 extra carbs per serving, but both have HALF the fat/sat fat of their regular counterparts. (We personally couldn't stand the light mayo—too sweet—so we switched to fat-free kraft. It does have 2 carbs per serving, which is plenty for one sandwich, but none of the 10g fat as regular mayo.)

We haven't given up sugar completely either, but we have moved more towards the "natural" and/or "no sugar added" varieties and a good bit of the unnecessary sugar was removed. We have Splenda for our tea and Equal for our coffee (which has nothing to do with him of course), I typically put flavored water (like the powder packs or Mio) in their lunches and we have sugar-free pudding with their fruit.

Shazia I let my son have cereals of all different varieties and they all seem to have the same impact on bs.  There is a brand of cereals out there something like Moms Best or something like that and they don't have alot of the added stuff and are pretty natural and they are a lot cheaper most of the time.  I let my son have pancakes every once in a while but instead try to offer him French toast which I make with Sara Lee Delightful bread because it only has 7 carbs per slice(not sure if this is available where you live) but if so its an option.  And for snacks at school I send everything from Goldfish to fruit cups that have Splenda and they are only 8-10 carbs each.  But my son particularly likes all the 100 calorie packs they have available.  I pretty much let my son decide what he wants for breakfast but there are a few things we don't have for breakfast like donuts or donut holes.  But I have let him have it later in the day at a meal time or special snack once in awhile.  And there have been a few times that I have given my son more carbs once in awhile to allow something that does have more carbs like pancakes!!  And we do use alot of the sugar free things that are made with Splenda like pancake syrup and chocolate syrup to put on ice cream or in milk.  I have learned that you just have to try things out for your family and see what works because just because another family doesn't use certain products doesn't mean you shouldn't give it a try and see what will work out for your family.  I know this post is old but hope things are going well and you have figured out what works for you family.

we do whole-wheat waffles and veggie bacon for breakfast a lot, which slows down absorption and is only about 20 carbs. Berries and cream are also a great low carb snack (raspberries and blueberries usually)