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Alcohol and bg level

Discussion in 'Ask A Question' started by FurryCub, Dec 14, 2012.

  1. FurryCub

    FurryCub Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi all,

    My rugby team is having a social tomorrow night and as these things go, there's likely to be some alcohol flowing. I'm on glicazide which I think is ok with alcohol but I know can give hypos. I've only been on it for a few weeks and had 2 hypos, my fault for skipping lunch.
    Anyway, the club coach reckons alcohol will raise my bg but I heard it raises then lowers it. What's correct and should I be drinking anyway?

    Btw I'm not much of a drinker only maybe once a month on a night out.

    Cub
     
  2. Spirit of Eden

    Spirit of Eden · Well-Known Member

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    Hi Cub

    Have a look at http://www.diabetes.co.uk/diabetes-and-alcohol.html It's pretty accurate and good advice against my experience. Until you've got a better handle on it, be cautious and make sure you eat

    As the article says, alcohol effects people in different ways. For me it's quite severe but doesn't stop me having a night out with a few beers now and again.

    Enjoy your night out

    My consultant told me that Beer slightly raises BG, Wine is neutral and spirits reduce. This is due to the relative amounts of sugar in the drink and alcoholic content. My experience is that Beer reduces, wine reduces more. I dont drink spirits thankfully
     
  3. Sid Bonkers

    Sid Bonkers Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    A single beer may slightly raise bg levels but a night at the Rugby club will almost certainly put you in hypo territory, heres why.

    As we drink the alcohol is absorbed into our blood this blood is then filtered by our livers and its the livers job to detox our blood of toxins, alcohol is a toxin and it takes the liver around 1 hour to process 1 unit of alcohol.

    Once the liver is full of alcohol it stops it other important job of regulating the amount of sugar in the blood so while it is dealing with the alcohol it will produce no sugar. The liver apparently lacks the ability to multi task :cry:

    As the liver will not produce any sugar while it processes alcohol in that time the bg levels will start to drop therefore if (too) many units of alcohol are drunk it might be many hours before our blood gets any sugar which is why alcohol can cause hypos in diabetics especially those on insulin and insulin producing meds like Glic.

    If you are going to drink more than a couple of beers, wine or spirits it is advisable to eat some carbs either whilst drinking perhaps some crisps or something and/or to eat something carby on the way home or before you go to sleep in order to keep your bg levels stable overnight.

    When I was on insulin my SDN advised me to eat a slice of pizza or a handful of chips on my way home and to test before going to bed to make sure my levels had not dropped too low. I followed this advice a couple of times whilst on insulin and made a "night of it" and it worked well for me :thumbup:

    TBH now I am older I can no longer handle the hangovers so I rarely drink more than a couple of drinks nowadays but that advice wont help you much at a rugby do will it :lol:
     
  4. Squire Fulwood

    Squire Fulwood Type 2 · Expert

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    Beautifully explained Sid.

    I can remember when I first got my meter and tried to look into what was good and bad to eat/drink I looked up the Mayoclinic regarding hangovers. I was pleased to find that one symptom of a hangover is low blood sugar for the reasons that Sid has explained.

    I told my nurse, jokingly I thought, that because of the above, drinking lots of wine could be good for me. Her mouth opened and shut a couple of times and then she looked confused. She did not see the humour. Doesn't do jokes apparently.

    A couple of people on here have reported hypos after drinking alcohol and it seems to be because they have not taken account of the lack of liver production. Some of the accounts sounded very bad indeed and involved ambulances etc. It would be as well to eat something and see if it works out ok.

    Enjoy the drink.
     
  5. Spirit of Eden

    Spirit of Eden · Well-Known Member

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    :) Yes, I got "the look" :twisted: when I jokingly suggested integrating wine as part of my BG control.
     
  6. FurryCub

    FurryCub Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Well I had a great night, kept glucose tabs with me just in case, but followed the suggestion of having a pizza. The club had food places selling little ones so worked out well.
    Bonus was no hangover either, not that I can say the same for my team mates :) . But we all still turned out for a training session today.
    My Dr didn't give me a meter, but I got one of my own just to check and was 8.8 when I left the club.

    So at least I know I can survive a team night out.

    :-D
     
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