15 Best Diabetic Gift Ideas 2022

According to information available through the National Institutes of Health, there’s an estimated 462 million people in the world who are affected by type 2 diabetes.

In the United States alone, more than 34 million people are estimated to live with this chronic condition. That means there’s a good chance that someone who’s close to you is living with this form of diabetes.

It makes sense that you would want to remember them around holidays as well as birthdays and other occasions.

Along with gifts that are appropriate for most people, are there diabetic gift ideas that would be especially good choices for your diabetic loved one?

Here are some gift ideas that may be perfect for the occasion.

1. Diabetic House Slippers

One of the changes that diabetics are urged to make has to do with the footwear they use at home. Rather than going barefoot or walking around in socks, people living with type 2 or any other form of diabetes are urged to wear slippers. There’s a good reason for that.

Since diabetes can affect circulation to the extremities, the potential for clots in the feet is greater than the risk faced by non-diabetics. There are slippers designed to gently massage the feet while the individual is walking around the house. The massaging helps to stimulate circulation.

There’s another benefit to those slippers; many designs include padding that reduces the impact of stubbing a toe. Given that type 2 diabetics are at a greater risk for developing foot ulcers from this type of accident, a nice pair of slippers provides protection as well as comfort.

2. Diabetic Compression Socks

The potential for reduced circulation increases over the years. One way to slow that process is to wear what’s known as diabetic or compression socks. Like the slippers designed for diabetics, these socks help to gently massage the feet and lower legs. That helps to maintain a healthier level of blood flow.

One of the side benefits of compression socks is that they help minimize leg fatigue. If your loved one is on his or her feet much of the day, that can lead to legs and feet the seem tired. Thanks to the socks and the support with circulation they provide, the legs are likely to feel fine.

3. Laminated Glycemic Index Cards

Not all gifts for type 2 diabetics have to be large. Some of the most helpful things can be small enough to slip into a wallet or a purse. That’s the case with a laminated card or set of cards that include the GI ranking of different types of foods.

You can buy laminated card sets that include three unique cards. One has a list of common foods that are low on the Index. The second provides information on foods that are listed as moderate or medium on the Index. That last card focuses on foods with a higher GI rating.

Think of how your loved one can put the cards to good use. Since they are so easy to keep on hand, they can be taken out and checked when ordering a meal in restaurants. They can also come in handy while shopping in a grocery store or a farmer’s market.

An additional perk is that they don’t require any type of power source. That means if your loved one happens to leave his or her smartphone in the car or at home, it’s still easy enough to use the cards and make healthier choices.

4. Cookbook With Low-Carb Recipes

If your loved one likes to cook, there’s always room for one more cookbook. There are some excellent ones on the market today that focus specifically on preparing entrees, side dishes, and desserts that are lower in simple carbohydrates. Along with providing meal ideas, the recipes also help to reinforce what your loved one knows about which types of goods contain complex rather than simple carbohydrates.

The complexity of the recipes vary as well. Your loved one may love spending time in the kitchen preparing new dishes. If so, there are diabetic cookbooks that contain more complex recipes that are sure to be a lot of fun.

Maybe your loved one isn’t into cooking and prefers simplicity when it comes to meal preparation. You’ll find there are low-carb recipe books with selections that require a few basic ingredients and can be prepared in thirty minutes or less.

Keep in mind that the recipe books are available in printed form, but they can also be purchased as e-books. If your loved one prefers to go digital with this type of thing, it’s easy enough to arrange to have the e-book delivered to his or her preferred device.

5. Fresh Fruit

Some people think that type 2 diabetics have to avoid anything sweet, including fresh fruit. You happen to know that’s not true. While there are some fruit choices that are better than others, it’s not hard to identify choices that your loved one can enjoy without guilt. The result is that you can create a fruit basket that has a decidedly diabetic bent.

Your goal is to include fruits that offer plenty of fiber as well as lots of nutrition. Apples and pears are two prime examples. Strawberries and many other forms of berries are also good choices. Avocados and cherries are also excellent options.

A quick trip to the farmer’s market or the supermarket will provide you with enough choices to build a basket. Alternatively, florists and other retailers who prepare fruit baskets for local delivery are often happy to include the fruits that you request. If you want to jazz things up a little bit, feel free to add nuts to the mix. Some of the best diabetic choices for nuts include peanuts, cashews, walnuts, almonds, and pistachios.

6. Wrist and Ankle Weights

Exercise is important to managing type 2 diabetes. One of the more common ways that diabetics enjoy daily exercise is walking. The general recommendation is to enjoy a brisk 30-minute walk while making sure to move the arms back and forth. Some people surpass the minimum 30-minute recommendation and walk for longer periods, which is great.
One way that you can support your loved one’s efforts to exercise is to provide a gift of ankle and wrist weights. Easy to strap in place, the weights provide a little extra resistance when walking and swinging the arms. The result is that the walk provides more of a workout for the leg and arm muscles, helps to keep the heart rate up, and promote healthier circulation.

It doesn’t hurt that the weights also help burn more calories. That in turn makes it easier to maintain a healthy weight, something that’s important to keeping blood glucose levels within a healthy level.

Remember that your loved one can wear the weights at other times. If he or she does go to the gym, those weights can be worn while enjoy aerobics, using weight machines, or even while spending time on a treadmill or with a rowing machine.

7. Gym Bags

Your loved one is serious about keeping in shape. That means hitting the gym two or three times a week. A gym bag that’s the perfect size to fit into a locker will make a great gift. With this type of accessory, it’s easy enough to take along workout clothes as well as a towel to use while working out.

The bags also include compartments that make it easy to empty the pockets and place things like keys and other basics into them before slipping the bag into the locker. Doing so means none of those things are left loose in the locker. After a shower, it’s easy enough to put on the street clothes and slip the pocket contents back into place before stuffing the gym clothes into the bag.

One tip that will make things even better: buy a gym bag that can be laundered with ease. That makes it easier to keep the bag fresh. It’s easy to toss it in the washer the same time that your loved one launders the gym clothes and the gym towel.

8. Low-Carb Snack Baskets

Fruit baskets aren’t the only type of food you can give to your diabetic loved one. There are plenty of snacks on the market today that are made using alternatives that limit carbs while providing plenty of fiber. The thing to keep in mind that “low sugar”, “sugar free” or “diet” labels on snacks does not necessarily mean they are good for diabetics.

For example, you can find quite a few candies that are made using alternative sweeteners. While they may be lower in calories, some of those sweeteners may trigger blood glucose spikes that are similar to the effects of sucrose. Maltitol is a good example of a sugar alcohol that’s lower in calories but is still likely to cause spikes. In fact, it’s only slightly lower on the glycemic index than sugar.

If you want to include sweets in the snack basket, look for options that are made with stevia, a natural sweetener that has much less impact on glucose levels. Add some nuts for a little variety, and possibly some roasted chickpeas for more crunch.

9. Foot Massagers

Foot massagers are great gifts, since they help to alleviate soreness while also promoting circulation. They are great for anyone, but especially helpful for type 2 diabetics who are on their feet most of the day. Some claim that they can help preserve sensation in the feet, allowing your loved one to avoid that feeling of the feet being partially numb.

The designs for diabetic foot massagers vary. Some look like platforms that require placing the feet on the surface and use a series of vibrations to massage the soles. Others look more like a pair of oversized boots that require slipping the feet into them. Those are designed to actively massage the tops of the feet and the ankles as well as the soles. Both options can be used while watching television, reading, or doing just about anything that one would do while sitting.

10. Neuropathy Gloves

Feet aren’t the only extremities that can be impacted by type 2 diabetes. Over time, the fingers can begin to experience some degree of numbness. Massage is one way of helping to promote circulation and delay that numbness from developing. Neuropathy gloves can provide that massaging action.

Sometimes called diabetic gloves or diabetic neuropathy gloves, they look a lot like most pairs you’ve seen. The styles may vary from simple leather gloves to the types of gloves you would wear for gardening. Glove designs that are aimed at helping with arthritis may have the fingertips cut out, but they still effectively massage the rest of the hands.

These can also be worn around the house with ease. Some designs are so light that they can be worn while typing or doing just about anything that involves hand movements.
That makes it all the easier to wear them while working out or while relaxing in the evening.

11. Medical Alert Bracelet

Did you know that health organizations like the American Diabetes Association recommend that all diabetics wear some type of alert bracelet or charm that ensures emergency care professionals know the patient has some form of diabetes before starting treatments? While you may think this is only for type 1 diabetics, it’s also helpful for EMTs and others to know if a person has type 2 diabetes before attempting to stabilize a patient.

Bracelets of this type have traditionally not been the most fashionable. Even today, some designs look quite a bit like the temporary bracelets worn by patients in hospitals. The good news is there are more stylish designs to select. Many of them look much like charm bracelets, or simple metal bracelets that are ideal for people who don’t like ornate jewelry.

12. Restaurant Gift Cards

While hardly a gift idea that’s only for diabetics, this approach can work well if you want to slip something in with a holiday or birthday card. Restaurant gift cards can be loaded with whatever amount you choose, and are easy to use when paying for a meal. This is great if you happen to know one or more restaurants that your loved one enjoys visiting.

There’s a good chance that one reason your diabetic loved one frequents those restaurants is that they offer a reasonable range of low-carb entrees and sides. By providing a gift card that can be used there, you indirectly support the effort to control blood sugar levels while also providing your loved one with a treat. For someone who seems to have everything, this can be a wonderful way to remember a special occasion.

13. Pocket-Sized Pill Box With Compartments

Type 2 diabetics typically take some sort of oral medication. As the condition progresses, it may be necessary to take more than one. Given that diabetes increases the odds for other health issues like high cholesterol, your loved one may be taking several medications.

It’s easy enough to have everything organized to take while at home. What about when going out for the evening? Some diabetic medications must be taken a half-hour before eating while others are best taken just before or while enjoying a meal. That means taking along medication to use at the right time.

A pocket-sized pill box is the answer. Opt for one that includes two or three compartments. This makes it all the easier to keep the pills and capsules organized. Someone who is on two diabetic meds and must take one a half-hour before a meal and the second just before or while eating will find it easier to quickly extract what’s needed.

In terms of size, something that will fit easily into a pocket or can be carried in a small purse is fine. The box doesn’t have to include room for more than an evening’s worth of medication.

14. Insulin Cooler Wallets

People tend to think that insulin is something that only type 1 diabetics take. The fact is that type 2 diabetics may be switched to time-released insulin as their conditions progress. The insulin may be used in place of or in conjunction with oral medication. In any event, keeping the insulin pen at a reasonable temperature is a must.

You can help by gifting your loved one with an insulin cooler wallet. Wallets of this type vary in size. Some are just right for holding a single pen, while others are large enough to hold two or three pens. The former is fine for an overnight trip while the latter is great for taking along on a vacation.

One benefit of these wallets is that they don’t require refrigeration in advance or the use of ice packs. That makes them ideal for stowing in luggage, a backpack, or an overnight bag. In the case of the smaller design, it can easily fit into a shirt or coat pocket.

15. Digital Food Scales

Portion control is essential when preparing a lower-carb meal. One way of managing portion sizes is to use a scale to ensure the only one true serving is included. That makes it easier to ensure that the amount of carbs included in that entree or side is in line with the information found in the glycemic index.

Today’s digital scales do more than weigh portions. They are also programmed to provide nutritional details about those foods. Most are pre-programmed with data on many common foods. There are also designs that make it easy to add more entries manually.

This type of gift may be something that your loved one never considered before, but it will prove useful in the kitchen. Since the scales are easy to operate and provide so much information at a glance, it’s that much easier to track the total number of carbs included in a meal.

As with any choice for gift-giving, remember to take the personal preferences and tastes of the diabetic recipient in mind.

You can often pick up on other ideas just by asking some general questions and listening to the responses. Striking up a conversation about certain products and how they work can also provide clues as to what your loved one thinks about them.

With a little discretion coupled with some creativity, you can come up with several gifts ideas that will delight your loved one and be ideal for the occasion.

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