you have either type 1 or type 2 diabetes, you’re probably aware of how
different foods influence your blood glucose. But what about
alcohol? How does it influence glucose readings, and can people with
diabetes really consume alcohol safely?
I have diabetes, is alcohol off-limits?
with diabetes can include alcohol in their diet in a responsible way,"
states Elizabeth Staum, M.S., R.D.,
. Joslin recommends that women with type 1 or type 2 diabetes consume at
most one drink per day, and men a maximum of two drinks per day.
consumption of alcoholic beverages must be done with food. Why? "Alcohol
actually puts patients at higher risk for low blood glucose, so it is safest to
consume alcohol either with a meal that includes carbs, like starches for
example, or with a carb-containing snack like crackers," Staum
I have type 2 diabetes, are there any special
concerns about alcohol consumption I should be aware of?
with type 2 diabetes are often concerned with issues surrounding weight
management, because it directly pertains to controlling their diabetes. As a
result, minimizing consumption of alcoholic beverages can go a long way toward
cutting calories and thus helping to achieve weight loss goals.
does alcohol interact with the insulin I take to control diabetes?
you have type 1 diabetes and have to take insulin, or if you have type 2
diabetes and have been prescribed an insulin regimen to better control the
disease, you should be especially aware of alcohol’s tendency to lower blood
who are counting carbohydrates may be better off not counting the carbohydrate
in alcoholic beverages since the alcohol will lower their blood glucose.
However, you should count the carbohydrate in very high carbohydrate alcoholic
drinks like those with mixers, fruit juice, or regular soda," advises Staum.
And of course, those people on insulin should be especially careful about having
alcoholic drinks only with a meal or snack that contains carbohydrates to reduce
their risk of low blood glucose.
I be concerned about drinking if I have diabetes and other health problems?
If you’re overweight, consuming more than the recommended amount of alcoholic
beverages per day can add excess calories that will be stored as fat. If you
have high blood triglycerides (fats), you should also think twice about
consuming alcohol because it may exacerbate the problem. As always, ask your
healthcare provider about how alcohol will impact you specifically.