Why Does Alcohol Cause Low Blood Sugar In Diabetes?

Because alcohol inhibits the liver’s capacity to release glucose, it lowers blood sugar levels. Alcohol also causes an initial sugar surge, which causes your body to handle sugar at a faster pace, resulting in the sugar rise being quickly metabolized below normal levels. When these two elements come together, your blood sugar levels begin to drop after the initial increase.

Does alcohol cause blood sugar to drop?

When alcohol is broken down in the liver, substances are formed. These compounds prevent the liver from producing new glucose. Blood sugar levels drop, and you can soon become hypoglycemic. Drinking might have a 12-hour effect on your blood sugar.

How do you prevent low blood sugar when drinking alcohol?

Mixed drinks and cocktails should be avoided by people who have blood sugar problems. These beverages are frequently high in sugar and empty calories, and they may raise blood sugar levels.

When it comes to drinking alcohol, the American Diabetes Association offers the following guidelines for diabetics:

  • In a meal plan, alcohol should not be used to replace meals, and alcohol should not be counted as a carbohydrate option.
  • Heavy craft beers should be avoided because they can contain twice as much alcohol and calories as lighter beers.

The amount of alcohol, carbs, and sugar in different drinks varies, as does how they effect a person’s blood sugar levels. The Department of Agriculture provided the data in the tables below. They display the carbohydrate and sugar content of various alcoholic beverages.

How does alcohol affect insulin resistance?

Obesity is a risk factor for insulin resistance, which can lead to type 2 diabetes in the long run. Alcohol consumption protects against insulin resistance and consequently type 2 diabetes development. The mechanism through which alcohol protects against type-2 diabetes development is unknown. We fed water or alcohol to lean, control, and obese mice to figure out how alcohol enhances insulin sensitivity. The goal of this study was to see if alcohol consumption and body weight had an effect on overlapping metabolic pathways, as well as to find out which genes are regulated in these pathways.


The development of type-2 diabetes has been linked to adipose tissue malfunction. We looked for changes in gene expression in epididymal white adipose tissue (WAT). WAT was collected from mice fed calorie restricted (CR), low fat (LF Control), or high fat (HF) diets with either water or 20% ethanol in the drinking water. Using a gene array containing 384 genes, we examined the expression of genes involved in energy balance and insulin control.


Insulin resistance was generated by obesity, whereas calorie restriction and alcohol consumption enhanced insulin sensitivity. Insulin resistance was linked to increased expression of inflammatory markers Cd68, Il-6, and Il-1 in obese mice; however, in CR animals, majority of these genes were down-regulated. Obese mice had lower levels of anti-inflammatory factors such Il-10 and adrenergic beta receptor kinase 1 (Adrbk1), which were elevated by CR and alcohol. We also discovered a link between body weight and the expression of the genes Kcnj11 (potassium inwardly-rectifying channel, subfamily J, member 11), Lpin2 (lipin2), and Dusp9 (disulfide-binding protein 9). (dual-specificity MAP kinase phosphatase 9).


Alcohol consumption boosted insulin sensitivity, according to our findings. Furthermore, changes in insulin sensitivity associated with obesity were linked to changes in inflammatory genes. Alcohol appears to improve insulin sensitivity through upregulating anti-inflammatory genes, according to our findings. Furthermore, we identified prospective gene targets in energy metabolic pathways and signal transducers that could play a role in obesity-related insulin resistance, calorie restriction, and alcohol-induced insulin sensitivity.

What alcohol is safe for diabetics?

Alcohol with a low sugar or carbohydrate content is the best choice for diabetics.

Light beers, red and white wines, distilled spirits, and low-carb cocktails are all OK, as long as sugary juices or syrups are avoided.

Traditional cocktails, dessert wines, and cream liqueurs, on the other hand, tend to have higher sugar content, which can cause blood sugar levels to surge.

Whatever type of alcoholic beverage you choose, keep in mind that it’s not simply sugar that affects your blood sugar control. It’s the same with booze. As a result, you should drink in moderation and adhere to the guidelines outlined above.

Certain diabetes drugs, such as insulin and sulfonylureas, can raise your risk of hypoglycemia, which is amplified by alcohol. If you’re on medication, check with your doctor to see if and how you can consume alcohol safely.

What happens if a diabetic drinks too much alcohol?

Insulin, a hormone generated by the pancreas, is a critical regulator of blood sugar levels. The pancreas does not create enough insulin (type 1 diabetes) or the body does not respond to insulin properly (type 2 diabetes) (type 2 diabetes). Diabetics who drink alcohol can have their blood sugar control deteriorated. Long-term alcohol consumption in well-nourished diabetics, for example, can lead to high blood sugar levels. Long-term alcohol consumption in diabetics who are malnourished, on the other hand, might result in dangerously low blood sugar levels. Heavy drinking can induce the accumulation of specific acids in the blood, which can have serious health repercussions, especially in diabetics. Finally, drinking alcohol might exacerbate diabetes-related medical concerns like fat metabolic issues, nerve damage, and eye illness.

Does alcohol cause hyperglycemia?

Chronic heavy drinking, on the other hand, has been linked to high blood glucose levels (hyperglycemia). In both healthy people (11) and alcoholics with liver cirrhosis, chronic alcohol misuse can impair the body’s insulin responsiveness and create glucose intolerance (12).

Can alcohol induced diabetes be reversed?

Diabetic ketoacidosis can cause health problems, including coma and death. Is it possible to reverse diabetes by giving up alcohol? Although type 1 diabetes cannot be reversed, it can be managed by following a healthy lifestyle.

Can alcohol induced insulin resistance be reversed?

Joel Zonszein, MD, professor of clinical medicine and director of the Clinical Diabetes Center at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx, contributes to the discussion.

According to new research from scientists in the United Kingdom, abstaining from alcohol for a brief period of time decreased insulin resistance. However, according to a US specialist, the findings contradict previous study and popular recommendations that moderate alcohol consumption may assist diabetics.

What alcohol is best for insulin resistance?

According to some studies, wine (red or white) can help your body handle insulin more effectively and may even reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes. It might even be good for your heart! Too much alcohol can trigger hypoglycemia, so moderation is crucial.