For some people, having a few drinks is part of everyday life and they wouldn't think twice about having a couple of beverages on a Friday night.
However, if you have Type 2 diabetes, drinking alcohol can become more complicated for your health. If you are living with this condition, or are simply worried about developing it, then it's a good idea to be considerate with the amount you drink.
GP Dr Sarah Brewer, working with the diabetes community and supplement brand CuraLife (curalife.com), explains how alcohol can impact those living with Type 2 diabetes.
"One of the largest studies to investigate the effects of alcohol consumption and the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes found that compared to abstainers, intakes of less than 63g of alcohol per day were associated with a reduced risk of Type 2 diabetes," Dr Brewer says. "The greatest risk reduction occurred at an intake of 10g to 14g per day, which reduced the risk of type 2 diabetes by 18 per cent. Once alcohol intake increased above the threshold of 63g, the risk of developing diabetes also increased."
In the UK, both men and women are advised not to drink more than 14 units of alcohol per week, however, that upper limit is significantly more than what was found to be beneficial in the diabetes study above.
MORE LIKE THIS…
"When you have diabetes, drinking alcohol can cause your blood glucose levels to either rise or fall, depending on how much you have eaten, how much alcohol you consume, how quickly, and the amount of carbohydrate present in the drink or mixer. Beer and sweet wine can cause blood glucose levels to rise, for example," the expert explains.
Alcohol also stimulates the appetite, making you more like to overeat, and it affects your judgement and willpower, so you're less likely to make healthy food choices.
"If you have diabetes, your doctor may suggest that you only drink one or two units of alcohol per day. Also, that you only drink alcohol when your blood glucose levels are well controlled and that you avoid sugary drinks and mixers," Dr Brewer adds.
"As well as making healthier choices, we can look to herbs and plant extracts to support balanced blood sugar levels. CuraLin is a specially formulated dietary supplement containing 10 herbs that are traditionally used to support insulin sensitivity, helping to keep blood glucose levels under control."