Diabetes, Social Events, and the Workplace

Plan ahead and you can enjoy parties despite having type 2 diabetes.
You may have diabetes, but you can still have a good time at parties and work functions.

The key is to know how food and drink can affect your blood sugar, and plan accordingly. An occasional sugary dessert won't necessarily blow your diet. As with anything, moderation is the key.

Weddings, parties, and other social events
When Sue McFadden, 49, goes to a party or restaurant, she skips certain carbohydrate-laden foods, such as bread, potatoes, or pasta, so that she can indulge in others.

"I won't eat them so I can have the dessert I like. My favorite is tiramisu. I haven't found a diabetic version of that yet!" says McFadden, an administrative assistant who lives in Drexel Hill, Penn., and was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes when she was 41.

Blake Holden, 48, is OK with the occasional splurge at a special event and adjusts his insulin to cover sweets or other types of food he doesn't normally eat.

"I make the decision that I'm going to go, I'm going to eat it, I'm going to take more insulin. And on that day, my blood sugar will be wacky. It'll be high, it'll come down," says Holden, who lives in Brooklyn, N.Y. "I do it very rarely. How many weddings or big parties do I go to? Not many."

He also has found that alcohol can affect his blood sugar in strange ways. "Certain alcohols seem like they stop my blood sugar from rising," he says.

Alcoholic beverages can be a potential hazard for people with diabetes: Should you or shouldn't you? You'll need to know if you have health problems that may worsen with alcohol intake, and how it can affect your blood sugar.

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Lead writer: Karen Pallarito
Last Updated: October 28, 2008

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