Does Alcohol Turn To Sugar In Your Body?

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Does Alcohol Turn To Sugar?

Does alcohol turn to sugar in your body? It’s a frequent question that seems widely accepted as truth. But is it?

Well, this persistent myth is totally false.

Sugar and carbohydrate-rich foods raise your blood glucose level, while alcohol actually has the opposite effect — it makes your blood sugar drop.

Confused? I know, my husband was too — and he’s the scientist in the family!

Let me explain.

Here’s how it works: Your liver is in charge of turning foods into energy for our cells, usually in the form of glucose. Alcohol has to be specially processed by the liver — and since it is considered a poison by the body, it gets priority in the processing line up.

So the moment alcohol hits the blood stream, your liver drops everything else and detoxifies the alcohol.

Ever felt especially hungry the day after you had one too many? Depending on how much you drink, your liver could be occupied for several hours with processing alcohol – all while your blood glucose levels drop (your body continues to consume energy on a regular basis), allowing for hunger to set in.

Your blood sugar will drop even when you eat foods that are high in sugar or processed carbohydrates – so boozing and then eating are a crazy combination that can quickly lead to overconsumption of calories!

Makes sense?

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Comments

  1. You said, “the liver detoxifies the alcohol.” So does that mean the alcohol is then excreted by the body after it is detoxified? Or is the alcohol converted to glucose? Or what?

  2. Is it a good thing to eat protein with alcohol then? Such as cheese? Wiil that keep blood sugar normal? Thx 4 great myth buster.

  3. brian appleton says:

    So from what I read excess calories from alcohol metabolization are stored as triglycerides which are fat. Alcohol consumption not only lowers your blood sugar for reasons you say but it is fattening.

    • Depends. It doesn’t in my body – I’ve had my blood testing exstentive and my triglycerides always stay low even though I’ve been drinking wine and beer for years but with my husband his beer consumption greatly increases triglycerides- so it depends on how your body metabolizes. Regardless the real reason why it’s “fattening” across the board regardless is that its empty calories much like soda.

  4. The doctor just told me I had elevated sugar levels that are getting close to diabetes and that I needed to stop eating as many carbs. Since I don’t eat many carbs, but drink a lot of beer every day, I must assume this is where the sugars are coming from. That is probably where the myth comes from. Beer makes sugar from the carbs in it.

    • Sadly beer is loaded with carbs, around 17 grams per (wine has about 2 grams per glass). I would limit your beer intake and check out a paleo style or paleo modified diet. The New Atkins would also be a good option as they include plenty of veggies.

  5. I have heard that eating sugar will increase the fat in your liver.

    • Yes, and eating both white processed sugar (and alcohol which has a different molecular make-up) is very hard on the liver since that is the organ that has to process it. The only exception I would make here is high quality whole fruits (not dried fruits) like blueberries and apples, they contain a small amount of fructose that the body can handle but they come with loads of fiber and liver detoxifying compounds.

  6. So I’m detoxing from mold exposure and I’m on candida diet….most things say NO alcohol due to mycotoxins and sugar, but some say it’s ok to do straight liquor in moderation. I want to be able to drink (if I’m not able to have so many foods) but I don’t want it to cancel out my efforts if I have a tequila & lime or vodka….what’s your take please?

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