Worried about going on vacation? Things to remember as a travelling diabetic.


Travel has the wonderful capacity of throwing even the most organized of us, off our game. As a diabetic, it is extremely important to make sure you’re prepared for eventualities when you’re travelling. Here are some important things to keep in mind before packing those bags…

  • When travelling by air, always make sure you carry your medication x3 in your carry on or hand luggage. You never know when bad weather strikes and you’ve got yourself a delayed or missed flight without access to your luggage.
  • Airports have strict regulations regarding liquids and drugs so ensure you carry your doctor’s prescription with you. This will make it a lot easier on you and the airport authorities.
  • Organize all your medication in an easily identifiable pouch and make sure everything is in one place so that you don’t need to rummage through various bags when it’s time take your medication.
  • Be it air, rail or road travel always ensure you’ve got backup food supplies with you. Nothing fancy, just some fruit such as apples, a box of crackers and juice is all you need. This way if you don’t hit a rest stop at frequent intervals, you’ve got yourself covered.
  • Always, always carry your monitoring tools with you. Fatigue and stress can often build up during travel and you don’t want to be in a situation where your blood sugar levels spin out of control without you being able to monitor it.
  • Set reminders/alarms on your phone to help you stick to your routine. Skipping meals or medication can spell disaster. This way even if you’re distracted, your smart phone will take care of things for you.
  • Avoid trying wildly different food when on the move. Rest stops around the world, especially in Asia often have exotic fruit and meat stands. You never know what kind of a reaction you might have to these foods and with limited access to medical care en route they’re best avoided.
  • Insulin stays good for 30 days at room temperature. If you’re travelling in extremely hot climates, freeze water in bottles and carry back up insulin in those. Conversely, if you’re in cold environments, make sure your insulin is well insulated.
  • Remember to account for time difference when taking your medication. If you’re flying east your day will be shorter and vice versa when you’re flying west. Your doctor should be able to advise you on how to modify your dosage so as to stay on track.

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