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Diabetes and Alcohol

ALCOHOL

Having diabetes doesn’t mean that you have to give up alcohol. The rules are the same for someone with or without diabetes. New government guidelines were published in 2016 stating that there is no safe limit for alcohol consumption. Unit guidelines are the same for men and women both being advised not to regularly drink more than 14 units per week and to have at least 2 alcohol free days a week.

See guidelines below:

Diabetes and Alcohol

Alcohol can interfere with the mechanism of the liver, which releases stored glucose when blood glucose levels drop so especially someone with diabetes who is treated with insulin and certain diabetes are more at risk of having a hypo which is increased after drinking alcohol.

If you are treated with Metformin it is important to be aware of that excessive amounts of alcohol could cause a rare reaction called lactic acidosis. As these symptoms are similar to a hangover (vomiting, diarrhoea, lethargy, nausea, and decreased level of consciousness it is important that you carry some medical ID.

Alcohol is very high in calories and if you are watching your weight can lessen your resolve and very easily contribute to a large proportion of your daily calories.

Diabetes and Alcohol

The liver gets rid of alcohol at a rate of 1 unit per hour but this can vary. Drink plenty of sugar free fluids whilst it recovers.

CALORIES AND ALCOHOL

All alcohol contains calories without providing any nutritional benefits. All mixers should be diet, low calorie or slimline.

Some alcohol contains carbohydrate and will raise your blood glucose for a few hours whilst drinking but will usually lower it and it is recommended to have a small supper before bed as a safety precaution especially when taking insulin and oral hypoglycaemic agents.

CALORIE CONTENT OF SOME DRINKS
DRINK VOLUME KCALS
LAGER 1 PINT 208
CIDER 1 PINT 204
WINE red /white SMALL GLASS
125ml
95
SPIRITS vodka/gin/whiskey/brandy 25ml 55-65

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