We all love the chance to overindulge at Christmas. Spare a thought for your diabetic friends and family. Whilst everyone else is helping themselves to seconds of turkey and yet another handful of chocolates, diabetics need to think twice about sampling the tastiest treats.
Mismanaged diabetes (either through diet alone or diet and medication) can lead to significant health issues, especially in the eyes. High blood sugar caused by poor control can damage blood vessels in the retina which can go on to cause sight problems and even blindness. In fact, diabetic retinopathy is the most common cause of vision loss among diabetics.
If you're hosting this Christmas, this is where the planning can get complicated if you’re not familiar with the precautions diabetics should take on what they eat and drink to keep their blood sugar within healthy levels.
Here are a few diabetic-friendly versions of our favourite Christmas drinks that will keep their blood sugar levels under control but still packed with festive flavour!
Mulled Apple Cider
Start by heating apple cider in a pot with mulling spices such as cinnamon, whole cloves, allspice, and a dash of nutmeg. Let the cider simmer for a few minutes and serve hot in mugs as a healthy and festive alternative to wine.
Mint Hot Chocolate
Use almond milk rather than cow’s milk to make this traditional Christmas drink. Mix cocoa powder, a few squares of dark chocolate, peppermint extract and sugar-free sweetener.
Mix diet lemon-lime fizzy juice with sparkling grape juice in a punch bowl. Decorate with mint leaves and orange slices to make a festive, fizzy treat.
Instead of wine, use fruit juice and diet ginger ale to make a non-alocoholic Sangria. Add berries as well as orange and apple slices.
Low Alcohol Beer
Keep a selection of light beers in your fridge. They contain 3-6 grams of carbohydrates in a 12-ounce serving, as compared to 15 grams in full strength beers.
Finish off your evening with a warm, soothing nightcap made of skimmed or 1% milk with sweetener and vanilla extract. Add a sprinkle of cinnamon or nutmeg on top. We hope you and your guests love these recipes as much as we do and that you and all your loved ones have a very merry Christmas!