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Q:

I'm a type 2 diabetic. Pleasel let me know how much alcohol I can have at one time? My BS level remains 120-145.

Amy Campbell

A:

In general, most people with diabetes can safely drink alcohol. However, it’s a good idea to discuss alcohol use with your healthcare provider in case there are reasons (e.g., liver or kidney disease, pregnancy) to limit or avoid alcohol. Alcohol tends to have a blood glucose-lowering effect, so people who take insulin or who take certain types of diabetes pills, such as sulfonylureas, are at risk for low blood glucose (hypoglycemia) shortly after, and even 8 to 12 hours after, drinking alcohol, especially if they drink on an empty stomach. For this reason, your best bet is to eat a carbohydrate food, such as crackers, pretzels or fruit, when you have a drink, or drink alcohol when you are eating a meal. Men should limit their alcohol intake to 2 drinks per day, and womento 1 drink per day. One drink is defined as 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine, or 1 ½ ounces of distilled spirits, like gin, rum or vodka. Choose non-caloric mixers such as club soda, seltzer water or diet soda, rather than regular soda, regular tonic water, or juice. Check your blood glucose more often than you usually do when you drink alcohol. And of course, don’t drink and drive.

January 8, 2012 at 10:48 am

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