Drink Like A Diabetic

Oktoberfest! Football! Flannel! It is that time of year everyone and that means one thing, it is time to sip those delicious fall microbrews and Drink Like A Diabetic. Wait, what? Yes, I said Drink Like A Diabetic. Now if you do not have diabetes more than likely you have had these thoughts: Diabetics can’t drink right? Diabetics can’t eat out right? Diabetics have to watch out for just sugar right? False, false, and false but trust me, I thought all of that and more before I got diagnosed with latent autoimmune diabetes in adults (LADA) 5 years ago.

Hi, my name is Caitlin Grenier and I am the Founder of Party Like A Diabetic, an online resource providing carb counts for your favorite local breweries, restaurants, bars, and event centers to help people with diabetes feel more at ease while dining, wining, and taking full advantage of this amazing city we live in. The vision behind this venture is to encourage people, diabetic or not, to live life to the fullest while being smart about it.

As I mentioned, I got diagnosed with latent autoimmune diabetes in adults (LADA) five years ago out of NOWHERE. I have no history of diabetes, type one or two, in my family and this diagnosis hit me like a five-ton truck being driven by an insulin wielding donut. I had always been healthy, an athlete, and up until then invincible. I have to admit, it took me a while to accept my new normal but when I did it was game on. I began diving into the books, articles, blogs, and research to learn everything that I could. I was determined to figure this disease out and how I was going to live my life as close to what it was before I got diagnosed (because I had a pretty awesome life). One thing that I kept noticing in a lot of these resources was that it was about what you SHOULDN’T eat and what you should STAY AWAY from. I don’t know about you but if someone tells me not to do something the likelihood of me now doing that thing just increased tenfold. I had to figure out a system that was not restrictive in nature but rather accommodating to my healthy fun lifestyle.

Now, if you are not familiar with diabetes it is a disease where the body either does not produce (type 1) or use insulin, a hormone that helps glucose enter the cells of the body, efficiently (type 2). Without insulin readily available glucose continues to circulate throughout the body wrecking havoc on the organs. So what is glucose? Glucose is a form of a carbohydrate known as a simple sugar and is found in many of the foods and drinks that we eat every day. Many people think that it is just sugar that diabetics need to pay attention to but in fact, it is the total number of carbs that we are consuming.

I bet you didn’t think that you would be getting a science lesson while reading about microbrews and diabetes huh? I come from a family that LOVES microbrews. One of our favorite things to do on family vacations is to find a hike and follow it up with a brewery. So when I got diagnosed I initially thought that I would never be able to ever have a cold refreshing Belgian triple or IPA ever again (cue meltdown). I am happy to let you know that is not the case at all. One of the things about diabetes management is paying attention to trends and how your body reacts to the carbs you eat or drink. By “experimenting” with different types of beers and analyzing my trends I was able to determine how to safely drink some of my favorite beverages while maintaining a good blood glucose reading. Mind you, I was completely estimating how many carbs were in these beers because those numbers weren’t available. Then I had the thought, I can’t be the only diabetic who enjoys beer…. Right? I can’t be the only diabetic who wants to be able to know for sure how many carbs I am consuming… Right? I definitely can’t be the only diabetic who does not want to feel guilty about enjoying a libation or two…. Right? I was very right!

I am so excited to be partnering with some of the top local breweries here in Nashville to bring you the carb counts on their top selling beers.  By partnering with Party Like A Diabetic they are not only making it easier for diabetics to make more informed decisions but they are also helping us feel more at ease. Carb counting is always on our minds from when we wake up to the middle of the night when we are not feeling “quite right”.  Everyone needs to drink responsibly, diabetics just need to take a few more extra steps and this one is a giant leap! I hope that you are as excited about these carb counts and beers as I am. Now it is time to Party Like a Diabetic and live life to the fullest (safely of course)!

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