We have had some great and terrible experiences when eating out since Jack has been diagnosed.I must say that 90% of our experiences have been very positive. In the most people are very attentive and try their best to help.
So here is our survival guide to restaurants, what works for us.
Obvious I know, but I always ensure Jack has checked his sugar before we go out to eat. If his sugar is low it can make him a little grumpy, not the best frame of mind for choosing a meal.
Install Carbs & Cals onto a mobile device, this is fantastic as it shows portion sizes so enables you to identify the exact size of your meal. Thus helping you to work out your carbs almost exactly. We have it on all of our devices, for us it is a must have app that makes life so easy. There is also a paperback version available.
When ordering your meal, speak to the staff in the restaurant. People have been so helpful with Jack, helped him work out his portion sizes. On occasions he has even been taken into the kitchen to meet the chef who has shown him portion sizes.
Its amazing how interested people are in diabetes, we have had waiters ask Jack to explain how it all works and thank him for explaining so they can help others. I love the fact that some generous spirited people have made Jack feel so comfortable in these situations.
Always have a snack with you, we have on occasions had a long wait for food, and Jack had administered his injection, which has caused him to go low. On occasions like this a packet of raisins is a godsend. When this has happened I also speak to the staff that are generally great and quickly get some bread or nibbles.
Ask how long your food will be and explain why. This way Jack can do his injection at the right time and not to early, sometimes our food has been so quick arriving that it has gone cold whilst he has gone off to do his injection.
Be careful with play areas. Last year we ate out with friends, who have younger children, Jack went in the play area to play with the little ones. Even though he had eaten, he had got his carbs exactly right, hadn’t factored for sport then had a massive hypo. We were at Center Parcs and the staff was just amazing and very quickly got us some full fat coke to raise his sugar levels.
So there you have our restaurant survival guide, diabetes is a condition that should never hold you back. It certainly doesn’t hold Jack back; he embraces the fact that we are all different. He is unique and proud if it. That makes us very proud parents.