It’s getting hot in here – Summer and Diabetes
Today is a magnificent 38 degrees.
The sun is shining brightly, there is a north wind and if you step outside you have to prepare yourself like you are walking into a sauna.
For spring in Melbourne, Australia is in the words of our weather reporters – it’s a once in a ten-year occurrence but it’s also a reminder that summer is fast approaching.
To most people summer means, beach holidays and fun in the sun but for people with diabetes it can also present a few more challenges to your everyday life. Especially if you live in a part of the world where summer doesn’t stretch for six months and there are times where you can almost forget tips and tricks to keep yourself safe and healthy.
Summer and Diabetes Tips
Probably the number one tip is to never been too far away from a drink. Hydration is really important to most people in normal circumstances but over the years I’ve found I seem to be susceptible to dehydration during the summer months. I’ve found guzzling water is always a huge help but depending on your tastes you may find other drinks that help to make you feel sane. I will add that alcohol and caffeine are probably not the best choices but it’s all in moderation
Find somewhere to keep your supplies cool. I’ve never had too many issues with my insulin going off because it’s been too hot but if you are expecting period of hot weather, there is no harm with using a cold pack to keep everything at the correct temp. I once backpacked around Europe for 6 weeks and used a Frio patch. A portable cooling pack just big enough to store vials of insulin or pens to keep everything ok
For pump users, be careful of your site. Especially; when near the pool or beach or when exercising, excess water gives the potential for the site to fall over. I sometimes use IV tape to cover my site when I’m swimming all day just to protect it but for others it may be a case of just checking every couple of hours that all is exactly where it should be
If you are feeling off, always test first as the first activity. It’s probably the most common sense activity, regardless of the weather. Always make sure you have plenty of supply and if you have a headache or just don’t feel right, test, to make sure your diabetes management isn’t the cause.
Find the time to reacquaint yourself with your favourite summer snacks. Use this time to enjoy the joys of salad, fresh fruit and the other joys of summer. Summer is a great time for low carb eating and I always find by the end of summer, weight has fallen off without even trying.
And the final tip is for all people, not just the ones with diabetes.. Don’t forget to slip, slop, slap
In Australia we had a great health campaign during the 1980’s where we were all encourage to slip on a shirt, slop on sunscreen and slap on a hat..
It’s always the simple things that are often the best.. I’m off to enjoy the sunshine!