1. Get the Diabetes Forum App for your phone - available on iOS and Android.
    Dismiss Notice
  2. Guest, we'd love to know what you think about the forum! Take the Diabetes Forum Survey 2021 »
    Dismiss Notice
  3. Diabetes Forum should not be used in an emergency and does not replace your healthcare professional relationship. Posts can be seen by the public.
    Dismiss Notice
  4. Guest, stay home, stay safe, save the NHS. Stay up to date with information about keeping yourself and people around you safe here and GOV.UK: Coronavirus (COVID-19). Think you have symptoms? NHS 111 service is available here.
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Find support, ask questions and share your experiences. Join the community »

Alcohol and high BG levels

Discussion in 'Ask A Question' started by nannoo, Sep 2, 2009.

  1. nannoo

    nannoo · Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    I started low-carbing a few weeks ago, and at the same time gave up alcohol. My BG levels reduced dramatically, and for the first time I found myself within normal levels. Last weekend I started drinking alcohol again - gin and low calorie tonic, and white wine, and since then my BG levels have increased, going as high as 14, with no other change in diet. I understood that there were no carbs in a G&T, or in white wine. What could have happened?
     
  2. stewpid

    stewpid Type 1 · Active Member

    Messages:
    37
    Likes Received:
    22
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Hi Nannoo

    Now I'm no expert but I am surprised that your BG levels went up.

    Because the liver is busy processing the alcohol, it interferes with its ability to process glucose. This usually means that the BG levels go down and you are more at risk of hypos.

    That is why, as a Type 1, I usually adjust my insulin dosages downwards when I have been drinking. The effect ususally lasts for up to 24 hours (depending on amount consumed) so I would even take less insulin the day after a night out.

    I know this probably hasn't answered your question , but I guess it shows that all diabetics are different. Perhaps wait until your next drink and see what happens then.

    Regards

    Stewart
     
  3. peecee

    peecee Type 2 · Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    125
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    56
    As far as i know all alcohol is high in calories and will increase your bg levels but excessive drinking can also cause your bg levels to drop and give you a hypo, as the liver is busy dealing with the alcohol and doesnt release glucose into your bloodstream.
     
  4. Celtic.Piskie

    Celtic.Piskie · Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    288
    Likes Received:
    8
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Alcohol is made by turning available sugars into alcohol.
    Wine DOES Have some carbs, as the low alcohol content means some of the sugar remains.

    White wine has about 1g of carbs/4oz, and red has 2g/4oz.
    Gin, vodka, brandy etc all have no carbs, because the higher alcohol content means that ALL of the available sugar has been turned into alcohol.
    Whiskey is my favourite.
    Also, what were you eating? I know that when i'm drinking i have a terrible habit of snacking on lots of little bits.. crisps, nuts, etc.
    I've learnt to watch myself and remember.

    Personally, I can't tolerate wine. I don't like it anyway lol. I stick to liquor and mixers.

    It's all experimentation, and you learnt something, which is good. :)
     
  5. nannoo

    nannoo · Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Thank you, but peecee, calories are not the same as carbs - alcohol may have a lot of calories, but almost no carbs. So it may put on weight, but it won't affect BG levels. As I said, it's not low BG levels I am worried about, but high ones.
     
  6. fergus

    fergus Type 1 · Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,439
    Likes Received:
    128
    Trophy Points:
    83
    That's puzzling nannoo :?
    You're right, alcohol itself has zero carbs and also inhibits gluconeogenesis, so the net effect should be to lower blood glucose.
    The only occasions when I drank either G&SlimlineT or wine and had a spike in bg have been either when I've been given full-fat tonic by mistake instead of slimline, or a medium or sweet wine instead of dry. Most red wines I find have a negligable effect on my bg, but when drinking white wines I make sure the are very dry - Sauvignon Blanc, Muscadet etc. Some other grape varieties, some chardonnays for example, can pack a bit of sugar and give you a nasty surprise the following morning. It's really the final straw when you wake up in a shopping trolley with a traffic cone on your head, I find.

    fergus
     
  7. nannoo

    nannoo · Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    *laughing* at Fergus!!! Oh, so someone sent you the photo of me with the traffic cone then!!!!?

    Well, the diet Tonic I bought myself from the supermarket, and I only ever drink very dry white wine, so I don't know what has caused the spikes. I write down everything I drink and eat too, and can't fathom what could have caused the problem. The only possibility is that I have been very stressed recently, and pretty depressed. Could that be a cause?
     
  8. lionrampant

    lionrampant · Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    562
    Likes Received:
    7
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Stress and depression can alter blood glucose levels significantly, depending on the individual - so yes. :|
     
  9. amberbrooke

    amberbrooke Type 2 · Newbie

    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    41
    I've just drunk a bottle of red wine and blood sugar levels 4.3 is this normal
     
  • Meet the Community

    Find support, connect with others, ask questions and share your experiences with people with diabetes, their carers and family.

    Did you know: 7 out of 10 people improve their understanding of diabetes within 6 months of being a Diabetes Forum member. Get the Diabetes Forum App and stay connected on iOS and Android

    Grab the app!
  • Tweet with us

  • Like us on Facebook