Party…Like a Diabetic

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Brew festivals! Barbecues! Boats! It’s summer and that means one thing: it’s time to sip those delicious summertime favorites and…drink like a diabetic!

Wait—What?

You read that right: drink like a diabetic. Now, if you don’t have diabetes, you’ve more than likely assumed that diabetics can’t drink, that they shouldn’t eat out, or that the only thing they have to watch out for is sugar. All false assumptions—but trust me, I thought all of that and more before I got diagnosed with latent autoimmune diabetes in adults (LADA) in 2013.

There are currently 30 million people in the United States with diabetes, or approximately one out of every ten people. Chances are that in your tasting room, restaurant, or bar, you have patrons with diabetes. One thing that people with diabetes have in common—besides their malfunctioning pancreas—is the need to count carbohydrates (not just sugar). Every time that we eat or drink something with carbs, we need to have an idea of how much we’re consuming to help us manage our blood glucose. Problem is, this information is not always easily accessible or available—especially at independent breweries, bars, or restaurants—so a lot of the time, we’re either guesstimating or skipping the item altogether.

Being an extrovert, foodie, dancer, lover of wine, and social butterfly, I grew tired of guessing how many carbs were in everything I wanted to indulge in when I was painting the town red. Then I realized that I couldn’t be the only diabetic who enjoys beer, wine, and craft cocktails or wanted to be able to know for sure how many carbs I’m consuming…Right?

Over a beer with my sister, we spouted ideas off each other until the phrase, “Party Like a Diabetic” rolled off our tongues. Bingo!

And so was born Party Like a Diabetic (PLAD), an online resource providing carb counts for local breweries, restaurants, bars, and event centers to help people with diabetes feel more at ease while dining, wining, and taking full advantage of all the South has to offer. PLAD’s goal is to open up opportunities for diabetics as individuals and for local businesses, as well.

I’m excited to be partnering with some of the top local breweries, distilleries, and restaurants in the South. By partnering with Party Like A Diabetic, these businesses are not only making it easier for diabetics to make more informed decisions and have more options but also making their products more accessible to a larger number of people. As mentioned, carb counting is always on our minds, and the old adage “knowledge is power” is especially true in this regard.

Carb counts are currently listed on my website and the HEAL app, a comprehensive diabetes management tool. My long-term vision is to spread PLAD to every major city in the US.