The Party Never Stops for Diabetes!


            Parts of Thailand are KNOWN for their partying. Everybody in the West has heard of crazy nightlife that can be found in Bangkok, most likely thanks to the Hangover 2

but not everyone has heard of the more popular party island destination of Koh Phi Phi. While Emily and I occasionally enjoy letting loose, we typically do not drink because one, we don’t feel alcohol is necessary to get crazy and have as much or more fun partying sober than we do drunk. And two, because partying is EXPENSIVE! $100 or more can easily be blown in a single night of drinking even in Thailand, and sure, would probably result in some funny stories, but that same money could be used to live a WHOLE WEEK in Chiang Mai, Thailand! For us, we prefer to budget when it comes to drinking and use our money elsewhere.

            We went to Koh Phi Phi not for the buckets (imagine what you build a sandcastle with, but instead of sand, alcohol) 

But for this

This was monkey beach, which had a curiously low amount of monkeys. Beautiful nonetheless!

And this!

And this!

So much beauty and so many smiles

One nice thing about Koh Phi Phi-no cars or motorbikes, all walking! Even with giant backpacks to the hostel.

And to enjoy the crazy night life and meet awesome people without spending money outside of our food and hostel, or so that was the plan at least. As Robert Burns so astutely put it, 

The best laid schemes of mice and men go often askew.

But as all diabetics know, it’s not only mice and men that this affects…

I LOVE to dance. Anyone who thinks that guys don’t dance has never met me, because when I feel the music in my soul, it shakes my bones and makes me move. In fact, when I dance, I go so hard that it’s basically a workout to music and usually end up looking like I just ran a marathon. It sometimes gets a bit out of hand, and Emily has had to calm me down to prevent accidentally punching someone and starting a fight (this may or may not have happened in Copenhagen). But it’s just so hard not to jump to some good, deep bumping EDM, especially on the beach! Even without alcohol, partying is difficult on my blood sugar because my body isn’t the only thing dropping it low.

I went into the night expecting this to happen, and prepared by carbing up accordingly and dropping my basal by 20%. Especially in the southern tropical regions of Thailand, finding carbs is ridiculously easy. Every 10 feet has a fruit stand with blenders that make the freshest and best tasting fruit smoothies we have ever had! Because we weren’t spending money on alcohol, we figured we could splurge a bit and buy a smoothie before we started partying. But also for medical blood sugar purposes to bring my glucose up before dancing until the sun comes up. One of the greatest perks of diabetes is almost always having a reason to get a fruit smoothie, not that you really need one.

Before the sun even went down the party had already started! The music was bumping, guys were flinging fire everywhere, and we were having a blast dancing and meeting people.

That kid on the top was one of the best, and seriously looked like he was 6 years old! He probably had to go to preschool the next day.

One of the best parts about Koh Phi Phi being known for partying is that it’s so easy to meet people from around the world because it’s a tiny island where people flock to the same beach parties. The alcohol doesn’t hurt either. At one point we were standing in a circle having a conversation with people from England, Brussels, and Estonia. We met people from Germany, Brazil, the Caribbean, and of course Thailand, all within an hour. It was like being a freshman in college all over again and we loved it!

About 2 hours later through all the dancing, laughing, lasers, and fire, we heard the familiar beep of Mr. Dexcom pull us back to reality as I started dropping. We had to tell our friends that we were “going to get snacks” and started on our mission to one of the millions of fruit stands on Koh Phi Phi. After slurping down pineapple and mango we headed back to find our friends. Without wanting to stop, we kept the party going, dancing and having a good time. A half hour later, we realized I was still low, and dipped out again to find a smoothie. We figured it was some leftover insulin on board from the high carb dinner we had earlier and that a few extra carbs were needed to counteract it. We soon found out it wasn’t dinner insulin because the same story happened again 30 minutes later! As much as I love fruit smoothies, they were starting to get old and we didn’t want to continue leaving our friends.

Checking to make sure the sensor is accurate and I actually am STILL low. Diabetes never slows down the party!

After smoothie after smoothie we were still struggling to get my blood sugar up and keep it up, and were tired of leaving our friends. We corralled them together and convinced them to get pizza with us figuring the fat from the cheese and carbs from the crust would be the perfect combo to get me stable. Convincing a gaggle of drunk people to eat pizza is not very hard at all. And that was what did it! All it took was 5 fresh fruit smoothies and a slice as large as my face to bring me back to normal and keep me there.

After finally calling it a night at the wee hours of the morning, we realized we probably spent more money on glucose than we would have on alcohol!

We spent more money on glucose than we would have on alcohol. 

Let that sink in, diabetes is one expensive disease! Next time we think that we will decrease the basal rate even further to prevent from continuously dropping, and keep smaller pocket sized glucose like dried fruit or sugar packets so to keep us from having to leave to get delicious smoothies. It may have been an expensive lesson, but at the same time It is pretty cool to be able to call a smoothie medicine!

Thank you guys for reading! Let us know in the comments if you have had any trouble keeping your blood sugar up and what you did about it. Happy sticking!


  1. Comment by Meg Unthank-Cottingham

    Meg Unthank-Cottingham Reply 15/02/2017 at 3:04 am

    So glad you are having fun… Your blood sugar stories scare me though. Be safe and keep laughing…❤. Meg

    • Comment by LivingLeashless

      LivingLeashless Reply 15/02/2017 at 4:50 am

      I’m sorry, I don’t mean to scare you! Rest assured, I have an amazing support system with Emily who might as well have diabetes she is so on top of mine ha! And going low is definitely not a problem in Thailand, there are carbs literally every 10 feet. Thanks for reading!


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