I realize there have been previous posts on this topic and my goal is not to sound like a broken record. However, recently I have spoken with some individuals with diabetes whom let summertime ruin their outdoor fun, and I thought it would be beneficial to re-post these summertime tips before the cooler temperatures are upon us:
- Avoid sunburn — Sunburn causes dehydration, and the stress it delivers to the body can temporarily cause blood sugars to rise. Apply sunscreen regularly and don’t forget your feet!
- Drink hydrating fluids — Be sure to keep up with fluids throughout the entire day! Remember that alcohol and caffeine are not hydrating fluids, so be sure to drink these in moderation (if any at all)!
- Be smart about when you exercise — Don’t skip exercise because it is too hot! Be smart and head outdoors earlier in the morning, later in the evening or exercise indoors instead!
- Store your supplies correctly — Insulin degrades quickly in the heat, and glucometer strips are also temperature sensitive. If you need to keep your diabetes supplies in the car or in the sun, be sure to have a cooler on hand!
- Check more frequently — It is important to check more frequently when your routine is not normal; metabolism, exercise levels, and food choices typically change over the summer months.
- Watch your feet on hot surfaces — Walking barefoot isn’t the best idea to begin with, but the risk of burning your feet on hot sand, sidewalks, and other hot surfaces should be a concern. Burns can result in healing issues, infections, and a host of other problems that could have easily been avoided.
The summer months will be gone before you know it so don’t let diabetes stop you from enjoying the great outdoors. Just remember to be smart and safe!