When you take an alcoholic beverage the alcohol moves into the bloodstream quickly without being metabolized in your stomach. For diabetic people who are on insulin and diabetic medications alcohol consumption can significantly cause blood sugar levels to drop because the liver has to work to remove the alcohol from the blood instead of regulating your blood sugar. Diabetes and alcohol drinking is related in the sense that it may result in the following conditions:-
1. Nerve damage in the arms or legs.
2. Diabetic eye disease.
3. High blood pressure.
4. High levels of triglycerides.
Effects of Alcohol on Diabetes
1. Moderate amounts of alcohol may cause blood sugar to rise whereas excess alcohol can cause blood sugar levels to drop dangerously.
2. The carbohydrate content in beer and sweet wine may cause blood sugar to rise.
3. Alcohol may cause blood pressure and triglyceride levels to increase
4. Alcohol can cause cause flushing, nausea, increased heart rate, and slurred speech
5. Alcohol stimulates your appetite, which can cause you to overeat and may affect your blood sugar control.
Safe Drinking Tips
1. Monitor your blood sugar levels before, during and after having a drink. Check it also before going to bed.
2. Do not consume alcohol on an empty stomach as food hinders the absorption of alcohol into the bloodstream.
3. Refrain from binge drinking. The American Diabetes Association recommends to stick to 2 drinks a day for men and 1 for women.
4. Always make sure to carry glucose tablets or another source of sugar as Glucagon shots fail to work in these cases.
5. Never combine alcohol and exercise as this may result in low blood sugar.
6. Avoid taking sugary drinks, sweet wines or cordials.
7. Mix liquor with water, club soda, or diet soft drinks.
8. Make sure to wear your diabetes identification bracelet or necklace before you have a drink.
9. Option for dry wines instead of sparking wines, dessert wines, sweet wines and wine coolers.
10. Option for light beer instead of regular beer.
11. If you trying to shed excess weight restrict your alcohol intake or avoid it completely.
12. Avoid taking hot baths, hot tub or sauna because the heat in combination with alcohol may result in low blood pressure.
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Diabetes and Alcohol Consumption Relationship