Diabetes During the Winter

Keeping the Cold From Affecting Your Diabetes

It’s that time of year again; the holidays are close, much of the country is affected by snow, and temperatures drop with each passing day. As the cold weather sets in, Agility Health is making a helpful list of tips for those with diabetes when dealing with frigid seasons!

Dangers to Avoid

Prevent excess stress and strain on your body this season by avoiding these things! All of the listed items below can be specifically worsened by diabetes, so it’s crucial to keep them in mind.

Excessive Cold

It almost feels like it goes without saying, but avoiding excessive cold is number one for diabetics. The reason Agility Health has included this at the top of our list is because what is considered “excessive” for diabetics is different than for others. Be sure to dress in layers, minimize the duration of cold exposure, and check places of low circulation (especially feet) after being outside.

Unchecked Blood Sugar

Going about your day with unchecked blood sugar can be one of the most dangerous scenarios for anyone with diabetes. Moreover, during the colder months, people with diabetes should be checking their blood sugar more often than they do typically.

Improper Hydration

Staying hydrated is essential for a lot of reasons. Those with diabetes are more prone to dehydration, which creates conditions conducive to diabetic ketoacidosis. While drinking a lot of fluids is important, improper hydration is to be avoided. Prioritize fluids that are clear, like water. If you’re losing a lot of electrolytes, fluids with them added can be helpful, like Gatorade and Powerade. Avoid things like coffee, black tea, and soda, all of which can more so dehydrate rather than hydrate you.

Tips for Diabetics

Winter doesn’t have to sentence those with diabetes to the indoors. Agility Health is here to share our best tips for diabetics on safely getting outside to enjoy the cool weather.

Get Some Sun

Step one to keeping your chronic conditions in check is to be healthy overall. In order to keep your Vitamin D levels and mental health at their best, getting outside in the sun is essential. A lack of sunlight decreases energy levels, and increases negative emotions like sadness and stress. Additionally, it’s typically warmest outside when the sun is out, making it the ideal time for diabetics to get outdoors.

Keep Insulin at Proper Temp

All diabetics know that insulin should be kept refrigerated, but it’s important to remember that it can never be frozen! At extreme temperatures, insulin’s molecular structure degrades, making it less effective at moderating your blood sugar. When traveling with insulin or carrying it with you outdoors, make sure to keep it insulated and at the proper temperature. If you’re unsure about the efficacy of your insulin or happen to be receiving unexplainable blood sugar readings, it’s best to use a new bottle. 

Consider Other Conditions

Having diabetes may result in associated medical conditions. For those with cardiac issues or neuropathy, cold weather can affect blood thickness. You can be more prone to clotting or increased blood pressure. While not always the case, it’s best to take extra precautions if you face added conditions on top of your diabetes.

Let Agility Help

Agility Health is happy to provide exceptional care all throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. In providing such an extensive list of private home care services, we’ve become pros at handling patients’ diabetes, both alone and in conjunction with other conditions. Contact us today for in-home care, skilled nursing care, rehabilitation, social services, and care management. Agility Health is here for you and your loved ones.

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