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Re: [IP] A Toast!


Several years ago, my husband happened to be in Germany on business during
Oktoberfest.  He discovered the wonders of German beer, specifically
Hefeweizen.  With the recent plethora of micro-breweries in the US, we now
have access to some very fine ale.  I do enjoy drinking this on occasion and
haven't had any problems with it.  I don't want any lectures on the evils of
alcohol.  Save that for the religious lists.  (Besides, some "medical
professionals" - ahem -  are advocating alcohol in moderation to be
beneficial, especially for the heart.)

Here are my personal observations on alcohol and blood sugar control.  First,
you should always accompany any alcohol with some food to cushion its effect.
While alcoholic beverages do contain carbohydrates, the alcohol will have the
effect of lowering your blood sugar.  If the beverage contains under about 5
grams of CHO (you'll have to check the carb books for this, the nutritional
labeling evidently doesn't pertain to alcoholic beverages) then you probably
won't need to give any extra insulin for the alcohol, just cover the snack.
If, however it has more, for instance a bottle of hefeweizen has about 15
grams of CHO, I usually bolus for about HALF of the carb amount.  I have been
doing this ever since I started pumping with good results.  I don't ever drink
hard liquor, so I can't say anything about that.

Incidentally, I used to think that wine made my blood sugar soar.  But until
just recently, I couldn't understand it because a glass (4 ounces) of wine
only has about 4 carbs.  This was before I learned the wonders of carb-
counting and that I couldn't eat varying amounts and expect the same dose of
insulin to work for all meals.  As it turns out, I had been reserving the
glass of wine for "special occasions" which usually meant a rather large meal.
The reason my blood sugar was going high was not the wine, but the fact that I
had consumed WAY too many carbs for my insulin.  It took invesigating the pump
for me to fully understand this.  I was just uninformed.


Mary Jean
Insulin-Pumpers website   http://www.bizsystems.com/Diabetes/