Drinking among diabetics is widespread and carries additional health risks, studies show.
Diabetics have specific health needs and know it’s important to manage their blood sugar. Many take this seriously, and the most recent National Surveys on Drug Use and Health (NSDUHs) shows that binge alcohol use is indeed lower among adults with diabetes than among those without diabetes. While it may seem positive to discover that binge drinking is lower among diabetics of all age groups, more than one third (34.3 percent) of diabetics aged 18 to 25 still reported past month binge drinking.
This is notable because alcohol consumption, even in moderation, can have serious health consequences for individuals with diabetes due to its ability to produce abnormally high or low blood sugar levels. Alcohol use (even when it doesn't include binge drinking) may also impair an individual’s ability to engage in important self-care behaviors such as monitoring blood sugar levels and eating properly.
As a result of these findings, it’s clear that diabetic young adults may benefit from additional targeted messages to reduce their alcohol use. It also has healthcare officials questioning whether the word is not getting out or if the dangers are known but diabetics are choosing to put their health at risk anyway.
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