You can drink alcohol with diabetes (type 2 and pre). However, be mindful that alcohol influences all people differently, so you should discuss alcohol with your doctor, especially if you are taking medications.
While we don’t advocate alcohol, if you choose to enjoy alcohol, it should be in moderation according to the recommended guidelines.
Since we encourage a low carb diet here at DMP, we also suggest choosing lower carb alcohol options to help keep your blood sugar levels in check.
The guidelines for adult men and women in Australia are to limit consumption to no more than 10 standard drinks per week and no more than 4 standard drinks on any one day.
A standard drink is always equal to 10g of alcohol.
- beer contains 0.9% to 6% alcohol
- wine contains 12% to 14%
- fortified wines such as sherry and port contain 18% to 20%
- spirits such as scotch, rum, vodka and bourbon contain 40% to 50%
One standard drink is equal to:
- 100 mL wine
- 285 mL regular beer
- 30 mL spirits
- 60 mL fortified wine
- 375 mL low-alcohol beer (less than 3% alcohol)
Alcohol Types, Carb Counts and Calories
Let’s look closer at spirits and cocktails, red and white wines and the range of beers available.
Spirits and Cocktails
Pure spirits generally don’t contain any carbs and tend to be lower in overall calories than many other types of alcohol.
The main thing to be careful of is what you mix spirits with. Many premixed spirits and cocktails can be much higher in carbs than those outlined in the list below.
Being that demand is growing for lower carb alcohol options, there are new products coming on the market all the time.
Red and White Wines
Both red and white wines can be enjoyed on occasion. Red wine in particular, contains antioxidants such as resveratrol, anthocyanin, and quercetin, which may have cardiovascular benefits for people with type 2 diabetes and prediabetes. Only if consumed in moderation of course.
Here’s the short list:
Beer and Cider
Can diabetics drink beer or cider? Yes, but again, it’s best to choose wisely.
Like all types of alcohol, beer and ciders can range very widely in its carb and calorie content. Fortunately there are quite a few low carb beer and cider options available now. Although cider is still a lot higher in carbs than some of the beers, some of which are now zero carbs.
This is not an exhaustive list of all the available options out there, but we hope it helps you navigate the best alcohol options and manage your diabetes as well.