COCKTAILS AND TYPE 2 DIABETES
Getting through the holidays as a Type 2 diabetic can be challenging with all of the scrumptious food at your disposal. You’ve got to take extra caution in monitoring your blood sugar as you consider which foods you should and shouldn’t be eating. The situation becomes further complicated if you enjoy having a drink every now and again for, during the holiday season, nothing says celebration like making a few toasts to the family and the new year.
As a diabetic, you should be aware of the “do’s and don’ts” of alcohol. Even if you only enjoy having a simple drink here or there, you should know how alcohol can affect you. In the end, there are some ways to enjoy an occasional cocktail, when mixed with care. As with food, every alcoholic mixed drink contains a different amount of calories, fat, and sugars, depending on the ingredients, so learning to craft a healthier recipe is an excellent way to enjoy without guilt or worry.
First of all, be aware of the effects alcohol can have on you. Drinking alcohol, even a few drinks, can increase not only your blood sugar but also your blood pressure. And in some cases, it can cause a rapid and drastic drop in blood sugar levels, which can also cause complications. Drinking alcohol can interfere with diabetes medicine, insulin, and other medications, and it can stimulate the appetite and lower your inhibitions.
With the above effects in mind, it is recommended you limit your alcohol consumption to one or two drinks a day for women and men, respectively. Enjoy your drink with a snack or a meal that follows your usual healthy eating guidelines, such as whole grain crackers, light popcorn, or low-fat cheese. And when crafting cocktails or mixed drinks, think outside of the soda and the juice-based mixers. Instead, opt for homemade mixers with fresh citrus (like lemon and lime juice), fruit-flavored spritzer water, and diet club soda.
Using a base of hand-squeezed lime or lemon juice, muddled herbs, such as mint, and a splash of sugar-free seltzer water, you can create some diabetic-friendly cocktails. You can even filter, dramatically reducing the alcohol and sugar content of wine by mixing it with equal parts of seltzer water over ice. Garnish with a slice or two of orange, and your healthy holiday mixer is complete.
As always, remember to keep your alcohol consumption to a well-balanced, moderate level, and don’t forget to check your blood sugar levels.
4 wedges lemon
4 wedges lime
1 cup white wine
1 cup citrus flavored seltzer water
1. Fill four glasses halfway with ice. Squeeze 1 lemon and 1 lime wedge into each glass.
2. Pour ¼ cup wine and ¼ cup seltzer into each glass. Stir gently and serve.
Lite Mint Julep. The Kentucky Derby classic cocktail gets a makeover in this diabetic-friendly version. Makes four drinks…
4 lemon wedges
¼ cup fresh mint leaves
¼ cup bourbon or whiskey
1 cup diet club soda or plain seltzer water
1. Squeeze lemon wedges into a tall cocktail shaker; leave peels in the bottom of the shaker. Add mint leaves; crush gently into lemons. Add bourbon; shake gently.
2. Fill four cocktail glasses almost entirely with ice. Strain bourbon mixture into glasses; fill each glass with about ¼ cup club soda. Stir gently and serve.
Beverleigh H Piepers RN
Type 2 Diabetes Health Coach