Diabetics always need to be aware of what they eat and drink, because it can have a direct effect on blood sugar levels. Carbohydrates are converted into fuel for the body’s use; however, carbs are very difficult for diabetics to effectively metabolize. Depending on a person’s weight, height and age, a recommended carbohydrate intake will vary – but on average a person should consume approximately 150 grams of carbohydrates per day.
Beer significantly lowers blood sugar levels, and a person may not realize that they are becoming hypoglycemic, because the symptoms are similar to intoxication (disorientation, dizziness and sleepiness). Symptoms of hypoglycemia can show up immediately, or even up to 12 hours after a person is no longer consuming alcohol.
Also, beer has no nutritional value, but the empty calories will quickly add up and cause excess weight gain (which makes controlling diabetes even more of a challenge).
It is recommended that individuals with diabetes restrict their consumption of beer, but for people who are unwilling to give up their favorite adult beverage, try to follow a few simple guidelines, like choosing a light version of beer, which will have a lower caloric and carbohydrate count.
Blood sugar should be checked often, while drinking, and if you notice a drop in your number, immediately consume food. Also, before you go to sleep for the evening, check your blood sugar level one last time, so you are assured that your blood sugar levels are still within a safe zone.
In addition, it is wise to always limit alcohol consumption, especially beer, to avoid a major fluctuation in glucose (blood sugar) levels. Drinking alone is especially dangerous for diabetics.
Beer has a direct negative effect on diabetic medications, and Metformin, for example, cannot be mixed with beer. Always talk to your healthcare professional about your medications and the adverse effects that beer, or any other type of alcoholic beverage, may have on your diabetic treatment.