beers

Guest Post: It’s time to talk beer

Ya’ll I’m super excited to have our first GUEST POST on the blog. Today, I officially announce my partnership with Party Like a Diabetic (PLAD), managed by Caitlin Grenier, who wrote the below post. PLAD and SFM was a rather immediate match made in heaven because we both hold a firm belief that anyone can live their best life even with a chronic disease. PLAD and Middle Tennessee State University’s (MTSU) Medical Nutrition Therapy II Class have been providing carb counts for my recipes and will be doing so moving forward. I’m like the real shit now!

In addition to PLAD supporting diabetes health coaching (a necessity for us all, IMO), they are going national to partner with local restaurants, breweries, bars, and event centers to provide carb counts so that people with diabetes can feel more empowered while dining and drinking out.

I haven’t talked much about beer because I frankly don’t like it. Luckily, Caitlin loves beer and you can look forward to more beer-focused posts from her in the future.

Like, we’ve really got you covered at this point. Cheers.

*****

On beer and diabetes
by Caitlin Grenier (Party Like a Diabetic)

I love beer. Actually, let me rephrase that, I love craft beer. Ever since I was old enough to enjoy (and appreciate) these libations, I have made it a point to explore the local scene when I visit new places. In fact, whenever I go on family vacations we plan our days around hikes followed by brewery tours and tastings. However, when I was diagnosed with late onset type 1 diabetes in 2013, I thought that I would never be able to enjoy a cold brewski again. I am glad to say that is not the case by any means!

I have to admit that I was hesitant to start drinking beer after my diagnosis. I was under the impression that I was destined for vodka sodas, diet tonic (ugh), or water. I would sit there jealously, trying only mildly to hide my emotions, eyeing my sister as she would sip on a “Panty Peeler” from Midnight Sun Brewery or my brother-in-law as he sampled a flight of IPA’s (one of my favorites). I was of the mindset that I was restricted now that I had diabetes and that I would be a “bad diabetic” if I ventured out too much. I don’t remember the exact moment it happened but I do know that I finally had my wake up call that just because I had diabetes didn’t mean that I could not live life to the absolute fullest and enjoy what I used to prior to diagnosis, especially beer!

After my shift, I began to experiment, aka sample, to see how different beers affected my blood sugars (hey, someone has to do it). I slowly started introducing different types of beer to determine which ones had the least affect on my levels while still providing the most flavor (gone are the days of college….).  As with anything in diabetes land, some times it worked out and other times I was not even close. I had to figure out what worked best for me in regards to pre-bolusing, stacking my insulin due to having more than one, and how to navigate flights (tip: if having a wide range of samples take the average of all of them and dose for a pint).

Turns out for me IPA’s and Belgian tripels do the trick. As with wine and cocktails, everyone has their own preference.  From the lighter crisper taste of kolschs and hefeweizens to the bolder creamier stouts and porters, there is a wide array of beers and with that a wide range of correlated carbohydrate counts. Luckily, from the creation of Party Like A Diabetic, which ironically happened at a brewery with my sister, I have been able to partner with numerous craft breweries in 6 states to get carb counts. Even though every brewery has their own approach to flavor profiles, each class of beer typically has a consistent range of carbohydrates.

I have created a quick reference sheet of the average carbohydrate counts so when you are ready to enjoy a nice cold one, the guesswork is not a factor (please note the following counts are the average of different breweries based on beer style, so they may not be exact).

For a 12 oz beverage:
American Pale Ale: 15 g
American IPA: 17 g
Stout: 18 g
Porter: 23 g
Brown Ale: 13 g
Amber or Red Ale: 16 g
American Wheat or Hefeweizen: 12 g
Belgian Pale, Dubbel, Tripel, or Quadrupel: 16 g
Saison and Farmhouse Ale: 12 g
Kolsch, Blonde, and Pilsner: 10 g

For more counts at local breweries check out www.partylikeadiabetic.co or @partylikeadiabetic

If you have a favorite spot that you would like please email me at partylikeadiabetic@gmail.com

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