Q: What type of sparkling wine can I drink if I have diabetes?—Gary, Naples, Fla.
A: Approximately 30 million Americans suffer from diabetes, and those who also happen to be wine lovers don't have to skip the Champagne this holiday season. However, it's important to make informed decisions, and drink in moderation. “Diabetes is a disease of abnormal glucose metabolism,” Washington University School of Medicine endocrinology specialist Dr. Paulina Cruz Bravo told Wine Spectator, “therefore, all forms of carbohydrates, including alcohol, can alter the blood glucose level of a person with diabetes.”
Dr. Cruz Bravo explains that alcohol intake recommendations for people with diabetes are the same as those without (one drink a day for women and two for men), but that diabetics should make informed choices. Dry wines, especially sparkling, are the lowest in carbohydrates and make for the safest option. Champagne, Prosecco and Cava are very low in carbohydrates, at about 2 grams per serving, and Dr. Cruz Bravo suggests that drier Champagnes, such as those classified as brut, extra brut or brut nature, would be better for your health since they are lower in residual sugar.
The effect of alcohol on a person with diabetes can be complex, which is why close monitoring of blood glucose in the 24 hours after consuming alcohol is advised, according to Dr. Cruz Bravo. As always, discuss any concerns regarding alcohol consumption and diabetes with your physician