11 Best Alcoholic Drinks for Diabetics Type 1 or Type 2

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Looking into the 11 best alcoholic drinks for diabetics type 1 or type 2 will hopefully put to rest the popular misconception that one with diabetes cannot consume alcohol. In fact, if you are diabetic, the guidelines for your alcohol consumption does not vary much from someone who is not. Typically one drink for women and two for men. It’s more a matter of WHAT you are drinking, and here you will have a better insight into figuring out what alcoholic drinks are safe for diabetics. Now, this doesn’t particularly mean you can drink as much as you want whenever you want. Hell, I can’t even do that (well, I could… but that would wreak havoc on my health) and I do not have diabetes. I do, however, know an alcoholic who is, and while she undeniably should be a bit more careful as to the amount of alcohol she consumes on such a regular basis, she certainly disproves the idea that diabetics can’t have any fun when it comes to enjoying an adult beverage here and there. Again, it’s all a matter of knowing what are the best alcoholic drinks for diabetics.

Let’s talk a little about some more specific guidelines one with diabetes must follow should they decide to drink. First and foremost, everyone is different. While it is indeed safe for most diabetics to “drink responsibly,” that is certainly not the case for every diabetic. Whether or not you have your disease under control, you’re going to want to consult with your doctor about if any amount of alcohol use is safe for YOU. And while there certainly are risks to alcohol consumption for everyone (not just diabetics), believe it or not, your doctor may even bring up the fact that moderate drinking can have its benefits, as well. Certain alcohols can reduce the risk of heart disease, strokes, kidney stones, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Disease along with some other surprising perks, and—get this!—are you sitting down for this one? Some studies are now showing that some alcohols may even reduce the risk of developing [type 2] diabetes by as much as 30%. Crazy, huh? And no, this doesn’t mean that you can simply drink your diabetes away… Seriously, don’t do that! ‘Cause on the flip side of that fun fact is the more prevalent one that too much drinking can actually cause diabetes [type 2].

Best Alcoholic Drinks for Diabetics Type 1 or Type 2


Remember, alcohol can be risky! Again, not just for diabetics, but I’m willing to bet if you are reading this particular article, chances are, you either have type 1 or type 2 diabetes. It can either cause your blood sugar levels to rise or drop; which can be detrimental to a person with diabetes. That is why it is important to know how alcohol can affect your blood sugar levels with hypoglycemia being low blood sugar and hyperglycemia being high—both of which very common conditions of diabetics.

Moving on! After making sure Doc gives you the “okay” to have a drink, you’re gonna wanna make sure you’re not drinking on an empty stomach—ESPECIALLY if you take some form of medication for your diabetes; which chances are, you do. Another thing to remember is that you want to keep yourself hydrated. But something you could easily forget? Have something on your person (uh, that’d be you… duh) indicating you’re diabetic. A badge. An I.D. Hell, make a T-shirt (coming from a former bartender, I would totally recommend and would have appreciated the T-shirt idea)! ANYTHING to let others around you or serving you know not to mistake what may look like someone who is a bit tipsed (do people say that, or just me? Well, you get it, right? “Tipsy”) for someone who is actually suffering from hypo or hyperglycemic episode. Depending on HOW tipsy you appear (and, of course, the professionalism of the bartender), you may be flagged; which is definitely a plus, but still not gonna help you if everyone around you is completely oblivious to what is actually wrong.

Another thing I cannot stress enough is to chickity-CHECK yo’self before you wreck yo’self. Chickity-check yo’self before you wreck yo’self… Did I really just say that? Yes, I did. And as corny as it sounds (and looks now that I’ve typed it… twice) I couldn’t think of a better way to get this part in your head. No, Ice Cube was not referring to checking your blood glucose levels (although, wouldn’t it be silly if he were?), but I am! You’re going to want to check it before you even start to drink to ensure that your blood sugar is at a safe level. You’re gonna wanna check continuously while you drink, before you go to bed, in the middle of the night (if you can), and really up to 24 hours AFTER your drink(s), as alcohol has a tendency to affect everyone’s blood glucose even the day after having a drink or two.

Now, before I jump into the alcoholic drinks for diabetics list, I’ve gotta share Jay’s article on the 12 Best Alcoholic Mixed Drinks for Diabetics. While she gives some great ideas on drinks for diabetics, I’ll be focusing a bit more on the best liquor for diabetics. So, what alcohol can you drink if you have diabetes? Well, you’re about to find out! Just ONE more thing I have to share with you before we get started (I promise it will be quick!).

How did I rank the 11 best alcoholic drinks for diabetics type 1 or type 2? I sourced most of the nutrition facts from MyFitnessPal and Livestrong, and just a few from Shape Magazine. Ranking the actual liquors was a little easier said than done. Ever notice how there are no nutrition labels on liquor bottles? Well, there’s not; which made me have to get a little creative with my ranking. While the sources I used were about the best I could find, they gave very vague numbers–more approximates, and not quite exact based on different brands and whatnot. So, I decided to rank the list more on the popularity of the actual drink itself. Let’s face it; some liquors are just more popularly ordered than others. Not to mention, the versatility of the liquor. Since calories and carbs add up the more ingredients are used in a drink, I thought best to take that into consideration. The best liquor for diabetics are going to be ones that are tasty all on their own or mixed with just one other acceptable ingredient for diabetics.

See! Told ya that wouldn’t take long. And now, the 11 best alcoholic drinks for diabetics type 1 or type 2.

11. Dry Martini

Here is one of the very few low sugar cocktails to order at a bar. While you may think of a martini as being a sweet even somewhat fruity adult beverage, I’ll share with you a little secret I learned in bartending school: A TRUE martini consists of gin as its main ingredient. Nowadays, one often thinks of vodka when it comes to martinis, and there is an array of different flavored martinis out there, but here I am talking about your old-fashioned dry martini with gin and preferably extra dry vermouth. Martini & Rossi is among the most popular brands of vermouth and in a dry martini, there is less than the 1 oz serving size in the beverage. The drink itself should be around 120 calories with only .2 grams of carbs even with the gin.

Best Alcoholic Drinks for Diabetics Type 1 or Type 2

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And now, let’s see the top ten best alcoholic drinks for diabetics type 1 or type 2, shall we?

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