As my daughter begins selling Girl Scout cookies again this year, it reminded me of this exchange about whether or not people with diabetes can eat Girl Scout cookies…my answer is at the end, but you probably already know what I’ll say!
She CAN Eat Cookies
Originally Published January 21, 2011
As thousands (millions?) of other young girls across the country are doing this month, Q is peddling Girl Scout cookies.
Since she is a Daisy and this is her first year, I decided we weren’t going to go overboard and set too high a goal for ourselves. The troop leaders decided to set the goal at 42 boxes per member because that would be enough to have a pretty nice reward if reached. Maybe camping, roller skating, a movie, or the like.
Little did I know that we would reach 89 in one afternoon just by selling to grandparents and my coworkers. That’s right, we doubled that goal in a couple of hours. Q is a good salesperson (winning toothless smile). And honestly my office was a bit quiet on that Friday afternoon, so we will likely rack up a few more sales.
So I’m thinking we’ve done our part and can relax.
Q wanted to sell door-to-door in our neighborhood because that’s how she envisions cookie selling.
So I told Q we would hit up the neighbors on our street. As we headed out I began to wonder who’s brilliant idea it was to encourage girls to go door-to-door in JANUARY! Though it was a balmy 24 degrees.
Remember, we only recently moved to this neighborhood and don’t know anyone too well.
First neighbor bought three boxes.
Here’s the conversation on the second neighbor’s doorstep.
Q: Hello. My name is Q and I am one of your neighbors (points towards our house). I’m selling Girl Scout cookies today. Would you like to buy some?
Neighbor: I can’t eat cookies. I’m diabetic.
Q: I’M DIABETIC TOO! Look. I have an insulin pump (pulls up coat and shirt to show her).
Neighbor: Oh, you’re diabetic too. You are so young.
Me: She has Type 1 diabetes.
Neighbor: I just found out that I’m diabetic a few months ago.
Long story short, the woman does home daycare and invited Q to come over and play with the kids the next day since there was no school.
So there we have it, we can’t even go door-to-door selling Girl Scout cookies without somehow encountering two misconceptions about diabetes: (1) that you can’t eat cookies and (2) that only old people get it.
So you might be wondering, did she buy any cookies?
From the Girl Scouts website (I updated this based on their answer as of January 2013):
Q: Should people with diabetes buy or consume Girl Scout Cookies?
A: Our licensed bakers currently do not have a sugar-free cookie offering. According to the American Dietetic Association, most people with diabetes can enjoy sugars in moderation as a part of their meal plans, depending on blood glucose control and body weight. We encourage you to discuss the use of sugar in your diet with your doctor or registered dietitian.
For consumer convenience, each of our licensed bakers lists dietary exchanges on the cookie package and the cookie order form, so people with diabetes and parents of children with diabetes can make informed choices. The amount of sugar and carbohydrates is also listed. Dietary exchanges should always be consulted, even if a product is labeled “sugarless.” “Sugar free cookies” or “sugarless” are not synonymous with “diabetic cookie” labeling because of the carbohydrates.
My Answer: Yes!
Eat them, have insulin. If you don’t want to eat them, pass them along to someone who will. And if you really don’t want to eat them, you have the option of buying cookies and sending them to the troops overseas through Operation Cookie Share. That’s a win-win situation: you support the Girl Scouts and you do something nice for someone who might enjoy a little piece of home.
*Image from the Girl Scouts website.