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Eating Out

Discussion in 'Ask A Question' started by RainbowBrite, Sep 30, 2019.

  1. RainbowBrite

    RainbowBrite Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Does anyone else struggle with eating out!? My diagnoses changed from type 2 to type 1 back in May so I am fairly new to working out carb contents etc. Originally I was on fixed dose Novorapid but this wasnt working for me....one day I'd have salad for lunch, the next a BigMac. The diabetic nurses have put me on a ratio of 1:6 which actually works well....most of the time!!

    I've had to stay away from home quite a lot recently for work and have stayed in a varying degree of hotel from Premier Inn up to De'Vere country house hotels.

    It has amazed me that the Premier Inn when asked for the carb content of their food, produce a folder which contains the nutritional information for every single item on their menu. The first of the 'posher' hotels I stayed in, the chef gave me the carb content of uncooked pasta. I had no idea. I just knew that it couldn't be right as it was so high. Got on the net and on Carbs & Cals and luckily figured what was wrong with the figure he gave me before injecting. Tonight, I had rump lamb with Moroccan spices and freekeh. The chef told me (via a waiter) it would be between 100g carbs and 175g carbs!! That's approximately 13 units of insulin difference. I injected for the 100g estimate and still had a hypo!!

    It shocks me the difference in the data that's available for different restaurants but I've decided its safer for me to eat a McDonald's than attempt to trust a chefs 'best guess'!!
    • Agree Agree x 1
  2. Diakat

    Diakat Type 1 · Moderator
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    A lot of it is guesswork that improves with experience. I find it is better to underestimate and then correct later after having an unfortunate experience where I injected for a three course awards dinner that turned out to be disgusting so I didn’t eat the carbs I was expecting.
  3. Muneeb

    Muneeb Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Yes it is a lot of guesswork when eating out. I generally try and add up the carbs that are clear, so if I have a burger, I'd say the bun is ~40g carbs (depending on size), any chips (generally around 70g carbs) etc.

    Most of the time its the burger fillings (or breadcrumb coated stuff) or sauces that catch you out, they can either be really high in carbs be laced with cheese or fats that delay absorption.

    So you have to be careful how much and when you inject, I find that if I inject for most restaurant meals before the meal, then I will most likely have a hypo. Similarly I have to split my dose, so say 70% upfront then the remaining 30% an hour later.

    High fat or protein meals generally have a delayed absorption, so the novorapid profile wont match that of the food, the novorapid will generally act by 3 hours in the majority, whereas the fats or proteins meals may peak at 5 hours. So you would hypo and then consequently hyper.

    Also depending on where you inject makes a significant difference to how quick your insulin acts, if in the abdomen it acts much faster than in the leg for example. So injecting in the leg may have a better profile for delivery compared to food.

    Also as above, I'd rather be slightly higher than hypo when out.
  4. KK123

    KK123 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    It is always going to be a problem knowing the exact amount of carbs in a meal from a restaurant especially where there is a Chef making (presumably) fresh meals and adding bits here and there. I suspect the Premier Inn dishes up meals that are in the exact same amount and portion as each other (like in a supermarket ready meal) so it is easier for them to give the carb count more accurately. It will be impossible to estimate the carb count in most meals I reckon so I tend to opt for a meal that is lower carb when I eat out (ie, steak, veg, maybe a very small portion of something carby) so that I know the approximate amount of carbs in the meal, I wouldn't choose pasta or anything like that because there is no way you would be able to estimate the Chefs carb count without at least a scale. Even so it's a guess and to be honest I don't see anyway around it unless you are content to go for things like McDonalds which again are more accurate carb wise. Also I certainly wouldn't rely on a restaurant's 'estimate' to decide on my initial insulin dose, I'd rather underestimate the insulin and correct later, it's like them saying to a person with an allergy, 'No, I don't think there are nuts in this, you'll be fine'......
    #4 KK123, Oct 1, 2019 at 9:38 AM
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2019
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