If you have diabetes, everything you eat and drink takes on extra importance. You have to ask yourself whether that bowl of pasta will boost your blood sugar, and naturally, you wonder if you can get away with having a little dessert. You may also wonder if it’s OK to drink alcohol.

You probably won’t find beer or wine on any official “diabetic menu,” but if your diabetes is well-controlled, a drink with dinner is not likely to do you harm. As reported in the Annals of Internal Medicine, light drinking might help you control your blood sugar — at least in the short term — while possibly lowering your risk for heart disease.

The keyword is “moderate.” While light drinking usually isn’t dangerous, too much alcohol can make your disease harder to control and put your health at risk. If you don’t drink now, it’s best not to start.

If you’re already a drinker, knowing when to stop can be a crucial step toward managing your diabetes and staying well. The American Diabetes Association recommends limiting drinks for men to two per day and one drink per day for women. But even if you stick to these modest levels, you’ll need to use a little caution and common sense to make sure alcohol won’t turn against you.

It is essential to know that you’re getting more than alcohol when you drink a beer or a glass of wine: You’re also getting a load of sugar. A regular 12-ounce beer has about 150 calories; a light beer has about 100 calories. If you enjoy cocktails, sweet mixers can bust your calorie budget. Also, keep sweet wines, sweet vermouth, and wine coolers to a minimum. The American Diabetes Association recommends sticking to relatively low-calorie drinks, such as light beer and dry wines.

No matter what type of drink you choose or how little you drink, alcohol can be dangerous if you have certain conditions. According to the American Diabetes Association, you should avoid alcohol entirely if you have severe nerve damage, also known as diabetic neuropathy. Drinking can increase the pain, burning, tingling, numbness, and other symptoms associated with this kind of nerve damage caused by poorly controlled diabetes and alcoholism. Avoid drinking if you have pancreatitis, high levels of triglycerides, or a history of alcohol abuse.

If you have diabetes and would like to discuss the effect alcohol could have on your condition book an appointment today through our easy online booking system – http://thechildrensclinic.ky

For additional information visit: www.diabetes.org/hea…/medication-treatments/alcohol-diabetes