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Can You Drink Alcohol While Taking Metformin?

Can you drink alcohol while taking metformin?

Can you drink alcohol while taking metformin?

Metformin is a medication that helps manage type 2 diabetes and occasionally prediabetes. In general, drinking alcohol while taking metformin is not helpful and not recommended by doctors.
The side effects of metformin can be life-threatening with excessive alcohol consumption.
Metformin and alcohol both put stress on the liver, so intensifying the harmful effects and increasing the risk of liver complications.
How does metformin and alcohol affect the body?
Metformin is a popular, effective, and inexpensive management medication, prescribed for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. In 2014, some 14.4 million people in the United States were prescribed metformin.
Metformin is also being used more and more frequently in prediabetes cases. Metformin use in overweight people with type 1 diabetes may also reduce insulin requirements and increase metabolic control.
The drug works by improving insulin sensitivity, promoting the uptake of glucose into tissues and lowering sugar levels in the bloodstream. By increasing how effectively the existing glucose is used, metformin reduces the amount of glucose the liver produces and the intestines absorb.
Alcohol also affects blood sugars significantly. Alcohol digestion puts stress on the liver, an organ dedicated to the removal of poisons from the body. When the liver is forced to process high amounts of alcohol, it becomes overworked and releases less glucose.
Long-term alcohol use can also make cells less sensitive to insulin. This means that less glucose is absorbed from the blood and levels in the bloodstream increase.
Over time, alcoho Continue reading

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How Australians Die: cause #5 – diabetes

How Australians Die: cause #5 – diabetes

This is the final in the How Australians Die series that focuses on the country’s top five causes of death and how we can drive down rates of these illnesses. Previous series articles were on heart diseases and stroke, cancers, dementia and chronic lower respiratory diseases.
Diabetes is rapidly emerging as a leading cause of death among Australians. It is also a leading cause of heart attacks, strokes, amputations, kidney failure, depression, dementia and severe infections – all of which themselves contribute to premature death.
It never used to be this way. Thirty years ago, around 250,000 Australians had diabetes. Today that figure is around two million.
Around the world in 2013, more than five million people between the ages of 20 and 79 died from diabetes, accounting for 8.4% of deaths among people in this age group. This translates to one death due to diabetes every six seconds. Tragically, nearly half of these were in people under 60.
These figures likely underestimate the major role of diabetes in death as it frequently goes unreported as a cause of death. One study showed that only 35% to 40% of people with diabetes who died had the disease listed on their death certificate, while only about 10% to 15% had diabetes listed as the underlying cause of death.
Which type of diabetes is worst?
Diabetes is characterised by higher than normal levels of glucose in the blood, caused by having insufficient insulin production or function to keep glucose levels under control.
This can come about if the immune system inadvertently destroys the insulin producing cells of the Continue reading

What Type of Breads Are Best for Diabetics?

What Type of Breads Are Best for Diabetics?

Well, who doesn’t love eating bread? Bread is considered to be amongst the easiest options that you can have either for your breakfast or as a filling snack. It also adds variety as there are so many different types and versions of bread available in the market today. However, things are just not the same when you have been diagnosed with something like diabetes. You need to be extra careful with whatever you are including in your daily diet. In this article, we shall try to understand which is the best bread for diabetes patients. So, come and join in for the article “What Kind of Bread is Best for Diabetes?”
Best Bread for Diabetics
Why Eating Bread Might Be a Problem for Diabetes?
In order to understand the types of bread that are good for diabetic patients, it is first imperative to know the problems with white bread that can harm those with diabetes.
In diabetes, eating white as well as other bread types of bread can cause a lot of complications. There are many reasons for the same. Consider the following:
White bread is known to contain a chemical named alloxan. Alloxan is added to the bread in order to give it its white color. This chemical is known to cause damage to the pancreas. Now pancreas is the organ responsible for the production of insulin, which in turn helps to maintain the stable levels of blood glucose in our body. In the absence of a proper functioning pancreas, diabetes is sure to occur.
Another important risk element when you eat white bread and are diabetic is the fact that white bread is made from processed flour and is a source of carbohydrat Continue reading

'My on-air diabetes nightmare'

'My on-air diabetes nightmare'

When BBC World Service presenter Alex Ritson's nightmare became a reality, he was glad his team recognised he was having a hypoglycemic attack as a result of his diabetes. Here he explains how you could help if one of your friends finds themselves in his position.
Most newsreaders I know have one thing in common: a recurring dream where everything starts going wrong a few minutes before the top of the hour and they only just make it into the studio on time.
When the pips finally sound, they look down and realise all their scripts are blank, and they end up spouting seemingly endless gibberish before finally waking up in a cold sweat, only to find they are safely in bed.
On 1 December, it happened to me, live on the BBC World Service and Radio 4 at 05:00.
But it wasn't a dream. This time, it was real.
Terrifying
The reason - as you'll know if you listened to the whole tape - was medical. I have type 1 diabetes and my on-air nightmare was caused by a severe hypoglycemic attack.
To put that simply - it's "low batteries". A lack of sugar, or fuel for all the cells in the body, most notably key bits of the brain.
Type 1 diabetes: 'A simple test could have saved my son'
Type 2 diabetes plan targets those at high risk
And it was terrifying. As I was trying to read the script, my eyes started operating independently of each other, creating two swirling pages of words, neither of which would stay still.
And I had a strange sensation which I can only describe as my subconscious, for reasons of survival, independently trying to wrestle my life controls away from my failing conscious m Continue reading

What to Eat if You Have Type 2 Diabetes

What to Eat if You Have Type 2 Diabetes

If you’ve recently been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, you’re probably wondering what to eat to keep your blood sugar levels in check. The good news is you don’t have to give up your favorite foods. A diabetes diet, like most healthy diets, is all about controlling portions and consuming a wide array of vegetables, fresh fruits, whole grains, nuts and seeds, lean protein, low-fat dairy, and healthy fats.
Watch Your Carb Intake
When managing type 2 diabetes, it’s important to understand that not all foods are created equal: Some will affect your blood sugar levels more than others. Carbohydrates, in particular, break down into glucose quickly, which spikes your blood sugar levels. Foods that contain carbohydrates include grains, bread, pasta, milk, sweets, fruit, and starchy vegetables. “In general, carbohydrates should be limited to approximately 30 to 60 grams (g) per meal to prevent high blood glucose levels,” says Erin Palinski-Wade, RD, a certified diabetes educator in Franklin, New Jersey. Once you’ve learned to manage your carb portions, try balancing your meals with lean protein and healthy fats, which digest slowly and keep your blood sugar steady after meals.
Use the Healthy Plate Method
So what does a healthy diabetes diet look like? It’s simple, says Palinski-Wade. Just use the healthy plate method: Fill half your plate with non-starchy vegetables (like spinach, carrots, and other greens), a quarter of your plate with lean protein (such as grilled chicken, fish, lean beef, or pork), and a quarter of your plate with starchy foods (like whole grain Continue reading

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