Sunday, May 19, 2024
HomeExclusiveCan Type 2 Diabetics Drink Alcohol

Can Type 2 Diabetics Drink Alcohol

The Pancreas And Its Hormones

Soft Drinks Could Increase Type 2 Diabetes Risk

The pancreas, which is located behind the stomach, serves two functions. The first function, which involves most of the pancreatic cells, is the production of digestive enzymes. Those enzymes are secreted directly into the gut to ensure effective food digestion. The second function is the production of several hormones. Two of the hormones are potent regulators of blood sugar levels. Both hormones are produced in areas of the pancreas called the Islets of Langerhans, which, quite literally, are islands of hormone-producing cells in a sea of digestive enzyme-producing cells. Among other cell types, the Islets of Langerhans include an inner core of insulin-producing beta cells surrounded by a layer of glucagon-producing alpha cells.

Insulin primarily serves to lower blood sugar levels by promoting the uptake of sugar in the muscles and fat tissue as well as the conversion of glucose into its storage form, glycogen. In addition, insulin inhibits the production of more sugar molecules in the liver. Conversely, glucagon primarily serves to increase blood sugar levels. Accordingly, it promotes gluconeogenesis and the breakdown of glycogen into glucose. The actions of insulin and glucagon must be finely balanced, because both lower than normal blood sugar levels and higher than normal blood sugar levels can have deleterious effects on the body.

Blood glucose regulation by insulin in healthy people and in people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes.

Amstel Light Pale Lager

Amstel Light Pale Lager contains 95 calories, 5 grams of carbohydrates in a 12-ounce bottle and is 3.5% ABV. The beer offers a thirst-quenching and refreshing flavor. Deep gold in color with a distinctive mixture of barley malt, glucose, and hops, it provides a complete and watery flavor. Its energizing taste sets it apart from other brands of light beers.

It comes with 5 grams of carbohydrate per serving and is light on the penchant. It does not lower your blood sugar to an extremely low level nor does it cause an excessive rise in blood sugar level. This means it affects your blood sugar level moderately.

Is Beer Safe For Diabetics

If you’re diabetic, you may be wondering if you can still enjoy a cold one with your friends. The answer is yes – but you need to drink smart! Yes, most beers are safe for diabetics to drink. However, it is important to monitor blood sugar levels when drinking any type of alcohol.

There are a few things that diabetics need to keep in mind when it comes to alcohol.

Also Check: In The Body Insulin Stimulates The

Is It Safe To Drink Alcohol

Check with your doctor to make sure alcohol doesnt interfere with your medications or complicate any of your medical conditions. Drinking alcohol can lead to serious low blood sugar reactions, especially if you take insulin or types of diabetes pills that stimulate the release of insulin from the pancreas. Alcohol can also affect other medical conditions you may have, like diabetic nerve damage, diabetic eye disease, and high blood triglycerides. Get guidelines for alcohol use from your medical provider.

Alcohol And Type 2 Diabetes: What You Need To Know

Beer and Diabetes

Drinking isn’t off limits when you have type 2 diabetes. Still, it’s important to understand how alcohol can affect your blood sugar, diet, weight, and more.


Many people with type 2 diabetes think they need to eliminate alcohol completely from their diet. But, in moderation, alcohol may actually have some health benefits.

For instance, moderate alcohol consumption may reduce the risk of developing diabetes in people who dont have the condition, particularly women, according to a data analysis published in the September 2015 issue of Diabetes Care. And in people who have type 2 diabetes that is well-controlled, a glass of red wine a day as part of a healthy diet may help improve heart disease risk factors, according to results of a two-year study published in Annals of Internal Medicine in October 2015.

However, you need to be thoughtful about including any type of alcohol, even red wine, in your type 2 diabetes management plan.

The most important thing is to make sure you arent drinking alcohol on an empty stomach, says Liz Brouillard, RD, LDN, CDE, nutrition manager at the Boston Medical Centers Center for Endocrinology, Nutrition, and Weight Management in Massachusetts. She recommends only drinking alcohol with a meal or snack that contains both carbohydrates and protein. That’s because alcohol can lower your blood sugar, creating a risky situation for people with type 2 diabetes.

Don’t Miss: Bad Effects Of Insulin

Effects Of Alcohol Consumption In The Fed State

In people with either type 1 or type 2 diabetes, single episodes of alcohol consumption generally do not lead to clinically significant changes in blood sugar levels. In fact, some studies have indicated that isolated episodes of drinking with a meal may have a beneficial effect by slightly lowering blood sugar levels that tend to rise too high in diabetics . This potentially beneficial effect was observed in both men and women, regardless of age. The alcohol amounts administered in those studies were usually between 0.5 g/kg and 1 g/kg, leading to blood alcohol levels between approximately 0.03 and 0.1 percent . Those doses are equivalent to approximately 2.5 to 5 standard drinks. Interestingly, studies of acute alcohol exposure in nondiabetic people have yielded quite variable results, noting decreases, increases, or no changes in glucose levels.

  • Blood sugar levels in the fasting state

  • Hemoglobin A1c , a blood component that reflects blood sugar control over the past 2 to 3 months

  • C-peptide, a molecule that is produced together with insulin .

Based on those biochemical markers, the researchers found the following results:

Which Beer Has The Least Sugar

Low-carb beer or light beer is best for people with diabetes because they have fewer carbohydrates. When you drink beer, this means that the sugar will be absorbed into your bloodstream at a slower rate, preventing blood sugar levels from spiking.

Some popular light beers include Budweiser Select 55, Michelob Ultra, Miller Lite, and Coors Light. All of these brands have less than five grams of carbohydrates per serving.

There are also some craft beers that are higher in carbohydrates, but this doesn’t mean you should avoid them altogether! Just try to stick to one serving size and monitor how drinking affects your blood sugar levels.

A few popular high-carbohydrate beers include Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA, Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, Stone IPA, and New Belgium Fat Tire.

All of these brands have between 12 and 16 grams of carbs per serving! But if you’re a craft beer fan, there are many more options out there for you to try at home or in your local pub.

Don’t Miss: Which Statement Is Correct Regarding Glargine Insulin

How Much Alcohol And What Type Is Best With Diabetes

Editors Note: This content has been verified by Marina Basina, MD, a Clinical Associate Professor at Stanford University. Shes a clinical endocrinologist and researcher with a focus on diabetes management and diabetes technology. Dr. Basina is an active member of multiple medical advisory boards and community diabetes organizations, and she is on the Beyond Type 1 Science Advisory Council.

So, you are going to drink alcohol. But what type is best to drink with diabetes? And how much can you drink? Before choosing what types of alcohol you want to be drinking, make sure that you understand the risks of drinking with diabetes and how to drink safely.

Sweetened Or Unsweetened Fruit Juices

Diabetes type 2: Avoid these alcoholic drinks to maintain healthy blood sugar levels

Although 100 percent fruit juice is fine in moderation, and is a source of nutrients like vitamin C, all fruit juices can add a high amount of carbohydrates to your diet and are pure sugar. This combination can wreak havoc on your blood sugar and increase your risk for weight gain.

If you have a fruit juice craving that wont fade, be sure you pick up a juice thats 100 percent pure and contains no added sugars.

Also, limit your portion size to 4 ounces , which will reduce your sugar intake to only 3.6 teaspoons .

You might consider adding a splash or two of your favorite juice to sparkling water instead.

  • increased weight gain
  • high blood sugar levels

Upon further analysis, the study participants who had overweight or obesity, which are risk factors for metabolic syndrome, had likely been swapping no-calorie soda for the full-sugar versions.

They likely took this step to cut their calorie intake. This was an association, but it wasnt considered cause and effect.

A 2016 study seemed to show that those drinking diet sodas had increased blood sugar levels and waist circumference.

However, this study did not control for meals or physical activity or other variables before each round of testing was done.

Further, the authors stated that individuals with higher insulin levels at the beginning of the study may have already had metabolic issues not related to their intake of sugar-free sodas.

For most people living with diabetes, sugar-free sodas are safe in moderation.

Also Check: Metformin And Insulin Combination Therapy

How Will Alcohol Affect My Blood Sugar Control

Different alcoholic drinks will have varying effects on your blood sugar It also depends how much you drink. A single alcoholic drink may not have a huge effect on your overall blood sugar.

If you have more than a single drink, most alcoholic drinks will tend to initially raise your blood sugar.

Typically beers, lagers, wines, sherries and liqueurs will have this effect. However, alcohol inhibits the liver from turning proteins into glucose which means youre at a greater risk of hypoglycemia once your blood sugars start to come down. If you have a number of these drinks, you can expect to see a rise in blood sugar followed by a steady drop a number of hours later, often whilst asleep. People who take insulin, in particular, therefore need to be wary of hypoglycemia.

Each person will have a slightly different reaction to alcoholic drinks so its well worth using blood tests to check how your body responds to it.

Iii Form Of Alcoholic Beverage

Clearly, moderate drinkers have a much lower risk of type 2 diabetes than abstainers. Heavy drinkers have an increased risk. Its as high as that of abstainers. The pattern has the shape of the letter U. But does the U-shaped risk pattern apply to wine, to beer, and to spirits. In other words, does the form of alcoholic beverage matter?

The Study

Researchers conducted a meta-analysis to answer this question. It included 13 prospective studies. Each study examined the effects of specific types of alcoholic beverage on the risk of type 2 diabetes. Together, they provided data on 397,296 study participants and 20,641 cases of the disease.

The Results

The meta-analysis found the U-shaped risk pattern for wine, for beer, and for spirits. Thus, the moderate consumption of any or all of these beverages reduces the risk of IV. developing type 2 diabetes.21

You May Like: How To Deal With Metformin Side Effects

How The Body Processes Alcohol

The body processes alcohol differently from most other foods. This can have a number of implications for people with type 2 diabetes. To understand why, it helps to have a broad understanding of what happens to the alcohol in, say, a glass of wine after you drink it:

  • The wine goes directly to the stomach. What happens next depends on whether or not food is there.
  • If there is food in the stomach, the pyloric valvewhich separates the stomach from the small intestinewill be shut so that the food can be digested before moving to the small intestine. This traps the alcohol in the stomach. If there is no food in the stomach, the pyloric valve is open and the alcohol can go straight into the small intestine.
  • In the stomach or intestine, alcohol is absorbed directly into the bloodstream. This is possible because alcohol is made up of molecules that are so small they can be taken up by the thousands of tiny blood vessels that line the stomach and the small intestine.
  • Once in the bloodstream, alcohol travels to cells throughout the body. It eventually winds up in the the liver, which is the only organ that metabolizes alcohol.
  • At this point, alcohol can affect blood sugar in ways that are especially important for people with type 2 diabetes. This is because the liver is where excess glucose is stored in a form called glycogen.

    When blood sugar levels dip too low, the liver converts glycogen into glucose. This glucose is released into the bloodstream to bring levels up to normal.

    What Are The Different Types Of Alcohol And How Does It Affect The Body Differently

    What Is The Best Beer For A Diabetic

    Alcohol is a substance that is made from the sugars in fruits, vegetables, or grains. It is also known as ethanol or ethyl alcohol, and it can be found in beer, wine, distilled spirits , and other drinks. The effects of alcohol vary depending on factors such as age, gender, weight, how fast the person drinks it, and how much he/she weighs.

    Alcohol in moderation is not bad for you. however, if you are diabetic you should limit your alcohol intake more so than someone without diabetes. Drinking alcohol can lead to a number of health problems. In people with diabetes, it can cause dehydration and lead to low blood sugar levels.

    The American Diabetes Association advises people with diabetes to drink in small amounts and avoid drinking on an empty stomach. If you have diabetes, you should avoid drinking alcohol altogether since it contains a lot of calories and sugar which can worsen your condition or lead to weight gain.

    Recommended Reading: Glipizide Metformin Dosage

    Drink Artificially Sweetened Drinks Maybe

    Drinks with artificial sweeteners, such as diet sodas, remain a controversial topic.

    On the one hand, drinks with artificial sweeteners can be a calorie-reducing alternative to sweetened drinks. I do endorse artificially sweetened beverages for the purpose of controlling blood sugar and weight, Basbaum says.

    Because artificially sweetened drinks have zero carbohydrates and low calorie counts, they may be a good alternative to soda and juice sweetened with traditional sugar, according to the Mayo Clinic.

    Yet artificial sweeteners can be several hundred to several thousand times more intense than natural sugar, research has shown. Plus, in Zaninis experience, they cause people to crave sweets more.

    Some studies support this notion. An article published in Trends in Endocrinology and Metabolism notes that eating artificial sweeteners may cause brain changes that trigger overeating. The article also references research that may link consumption of these sugar alternatives to a higher risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Ultimately, more studies are needed, the authors concluded.

    Whether you decide to drink artificially sweetened beverages is a matter of taste and preference, and a choice to make with your healthcare team.

    RELATED: How Much Caffeine Is Safe for People With Diabetes?

    What Influences Your Intoxication

    Several factors including diabetes medications, food, and exercise can all make things even more complicated, said Carrie S. Swift, a dietician and spokesperson with the Association of Diabetes Care & Education Specialists. Overall, alcohol intake leads to less predictable blood glucose whether you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, she said. But the impact of alcohol on blood glucose isnt always the same.

    This can be caused by:

    Also Check: New Onset Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus

    Diabetes And Alcohol Abuse Treatment

    Alcohol abuse can worsen many diabetes-related medical complications such as eye disease, nerve damage, and fat metabolism. Still, nearly 46% of people with diabetes are current drinkers. Only 4% of people reported binge drinking, compared to 36% of those without diabetes.

    Nonetheless, people with diabetes often struggle with mental health conditions that might lead to substance abuse problems. At least 50% of people with a substance use disorder also experience co-occurring mental health illnesses.

    Depending on the severity of alcohol use disorder, someone might choose to seek inpatient or outpatient substance abuse treatment. For people with diabetes, withdrawal symptoms may be particularly challenging. Because of this, detox is often recommended at a treatment facility that provides medical supervision. This is partly due to fluctuating blood sugar levels that could cause fainting or other problems.

    Its important to discuss treatment options with a primary healthcare provider and seek help from a treatment center to help people manage their diabetes symptoms while in rehab.

    Gin Rum Vodka Or Whiskey

    What can you drink with diabetes – Alcohol, Soda, Diet Soda

    These liquors contain 0 grams of carbs per 1.5-ounce serving .

    However, the carb content of your drink may vary depending on what you mix the liquor with.

    Avoid mixing liquor with sugary juices or sugar-containing soda. If you do drink these with alcohol, your blood sugar may spike and then dip to dangerously low levels.


    When consumed on their own, hard liquors provide 0 grams of carbs but may lead to very low blood sugar levels. Avoid drinking them on an empty stomach or mixing them with sugary drinks.

    Make sure to go for low sugar options if you feel like having a cocktail.

    Here are some of the best low carb cocktails.

    Recommended Reading: How Much Does Glimepiride Lower Blood Sugar

    What Other Dangers Does Alcohol Pose For People With Diabetes

    Drinking alcohol in high quantities regularly can cause an increase in blood pressure. Furthermore, alcoholic drinks contain calories, and therefore can lead to weight gain. Drinking alcohol can exacerbate neuropathy by increasing pain and numbness.

    Low carbohydrate and low-alcohol drinks may be better than standard alcohol, but the dangers still need to be considered. Often alcohol is mixed with fizzy, sugary drinks that can impact on blood sugars.

    Can People With Diabetes Drink

    As you may have guessed, the answer is more complicated than a simple yes or no. It is safest to avoid alcohol completely, but that may not be a step that you are willing to take. If you insist on drinking, be sure to keep it in moderation to reduce the risk of alcohol-related health problems such as high blood pressure or liver disease. Limit yourself to no more than one the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend.

    Other tips to stay safe from the American Diabetes Association are:

    • Drink slowly to spread out your alcohol consumption.
    • Drink water as you drink alcohol and between drinks.
    • Consume some food with carbohydrates before and while drinking.

    Each time that you do choose to drink, be sure that you are wearing an ID that states that you have diabetes. Also tell your friends or family members that you are at risk for hypoglycemia while drinking. The signs of an emergency situation as hypoglycemia can appear similar to those of being drunk, and you do not want people to just leave you alone if you are acting drunk but really need medical care for hypoglycemia.

    Mayo Clinic suggests following these additional special precautions for diabetes patients.

    It is especially important to plan ahead when you will be drinking outside the home or in social settings. Those are situations when you can easily get caught up in the moment and get into trouble if you have not planned ahead.


    Find your healthier self

    Recommended Reading: Metformin Puffy Face


    Popular Articles