Best Beverage Choices for People With Diabetes

Diabetes Related Articles

Best Beverage Choices for People With Diabetes

Author: Jeffrey E. Feldberg

For some people with diabetes, the choice of what to drink is a crucial decision in controlling the level of glucose in their blood. Some diabetics come from a lifestyle accustomed to drinking nothing but high sugar sodas and find that making the transition to a diabetic beverage routine is really challenging.

However it is important to reduce the amount of sugar and calories that come from beverages because they can lead to a great deal of weight gain and unexpected spikes in blood sugar. A failure to monitor with diabetic testing supplies and act promptly to control these spikes can lead to some very significant side effects of diabetes, such as loss of eye sight, kidney malfunction, and nerve damage.

Diet Drinks

Diet drinks may seem like the best choice for diabetics, and in some ways, they are. If a diabetic just can't shake the soda habit, then diet sodas and drinks are essential. However, if they are chosen as a part of the daily diabetic diet, care should be taken to monitor body weight closely. Some studies have shown that drinking beverages with artificial sweeteners can contribute to weight gain in diabetics and non-diabetics alike. The great news about these drinks is that they do not affect the blood sugar at all, so drinking them quenches the thirst and has no impact on diabetes itself. Long term testing of the effects of artificial sweetener on bone health and overall wellness is still ongoing. Caffeine in some of these drinks is also not recommended for optimal health, although it does not affect a diabetic's blood sugar.

Milk, Coffee and Tea

Milk is full of nutrients, and if the non-fat version is chosen, it makes for a great alternative for diabetic beverage. Non-fat milk is full of calcium and other nutrients in addition to being low in calories and can help round out the choice of beverages recommended in a diabetic treatment plan.

Coffee and tea are other great additions to a diabetic diet, but they each come with a few caveats that need mentioning. They are both potentially high in caffeine which can have a negative effect on blood pressure, heart problems, and anxiety levels. However, opting for the decaf version of these beverages is a great way to avoid this issue. The other problem with these drinks is the amount of additives diabetics tend to put into them! Sugar, cream, and honey are just a few of the high sugar, high calorie items that are certainly not in a diabetic treatment plan yet that could be added to coffee and tea without a second thought. If these drinks are taken plain, they can make for an excellent diabetic beverage on occasion.

Water is Just the Wisest Choice!

Reference: Harvard School of Public Health; Healthy Beverage Guidelines

Many people with diabetes may turn away from plain water, but it really is the best option for avoiding certain risks associated with diabetes and maintaining overall health. Patients who drink water tend to have better blood sugars than those who opt for other beverages.

Water can be spiced up for diabetics by adding crushed fresh mint or other herbs, such as basil. A zest of a citrus fruit, such as lemon or lime, can add a dash of taste, but not the sugar rush that will spike a diabetic's blood sugar out of control. If a zest is not sufficient, adding a small amount of juice to the water is acceptable, but use caution because juice has sugar. Use only an ounce of juice to 12 ounces of water.

Finding a way to quench your thirst and stay within the recommended diabetes treatment plan is well worth the effort for so many reasons. The reward of the right lifestyle choices is immediate and leads to the enjoyment of a healthy, vibrant life.

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About the Author

Jeffrey E. Feldberg is one of the founders of Total Health Diabetes, LLC and the Co-Chairman. Jeffrey's passion for healthy living, being an early pioneer of e-Learning, and being submersed in technology, has culminated in an unique approach to provide the tools, Information and products necessary to help diabetics lead long, healthy and vibrant lives. Total Health Diabetes, a Medicare Competitive Bid winner in 8 of the 9 regions, also services all non-competitive bid markets and is committed to providing a full line of diabetics supplies that are accessible online and conveniently delivered to people's homes across the country.

Jeffrey can be reached at (407) 767-5907 or email him at

A diabetes treatment plan must include a diet plan with healthy beverages. Here are the right choices of drinks for those determined to manage their diabetes and gain control over their health and vitality.