Holiday Sugar Rush

Do you find it more difficult to manage your blood sugar levels during the holidays? Living with diabetes can be hard during the holidays, but Bremo Pharmacy is here to help!

Here are some helpful tips to help avoid the holiday sugar rush:

  1. If you enjoy an alcoholic beverage, remember to eat something first to avoid low blood sugar levels later. Stick to sugar free mix drinks and limit to one 8oz alcoholic bevesugar-rushrage for women and two 8 oz beverages for men per day.
  2. It may be easy to overindulge, especially at this time of year, but make sure your portions are reasonable in size and try to avoid going back for seconds. Eat slowly and enjoy each and every bit of your home cooked meals!
  3. Remember not to solely focus on reducing sugars, it is also important to count all carbohydrates as well. Carbohydrates, if not used for energy, break down to simple sugars and elevate your blood sugar levels. Also, try to make healthier foods for the holidays. Visit to find delicious and diabetes-friendly recipes to make this holiday!
  4. Stay active this time of year and partake in moderate-intense physical activity for at least 30 minutes on at least 5 days a week. Some examples include: brisk walks, swimming, bicycling, and dancing. You can make exercise easier, more fun, and more motivating if you find an exercise partner, too!
  5. Know your highs and lows. While it may be tempting, do not skip meals to accommodate for eating sweet treats later, as this can lead to low blood sugar. If you are ever concerned about your blood glucose, come visit your pharmacist at Bremo Pharmacy for free blood glucose screenings until the end of December. Learn more here!


Signs and symptoms of high blood sugar:

Signs and symptoms of low blood sugar:

  •          Increase thirst
  •          Feeling nervous or anxious
  •          Increase thirst
  •          Feeling irritable
  •          Increase urination
  •          Sweating
  •          Blurry vision
  •          Dizziness
  •         Drowsy
  •          Headache
  •          Dry skin
  •          Blurry vision
  •          Hungry
  •          Hungry
  •          Fast heartbeat
  •          Shaking
  • It is especially important to know how to manage low blood sugar. Low blood sugar can occur if you have not had enough to eat, gave yourself too much medication, like insulin, or if you drink many alcoholic drinks.
  • If your blood sugar goes below 70mg/dL, eat 15-20 grams of sugar (hard candy, 2 tbsp. of raisins, 4 oz of juice or non-diet soda, 8 oz of nonfat milk), and then recheck your sugar level in 15 minutes. If low sugar continues (still below 70mg/dL), repeat and give a
    nother 15-20 grams of sugar.
  • Once your blood sugar returns to normal, eat a small snack with protein and carbohydrates. Some great examples are half of a turkey sandwich or peanut butter crackers.

Adapted from the American Diabetes Association

Created by: Jennifer Schofield, VCU School of Pharmacy PharmD Candidate 2017

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