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Vacation is often our favorite way to unwind and relax, but it can be stressful when you’re traveling with a condition like diabetes.

By taking some extra time to prepare for your trip, you can avoid complications leading to a vacation nightmare.

Here are some things to know before you go:

Review Your Routine

Traveling to a new place means changes in diet, activity and in some cases, time zones. This may necessitate changes in your normal diabetes care routine. If you’re unsure how to best adjust your routine, ask your doctor for advice.

Don’t forget your supplies

Before you leave, make sure you have properly packed all of your diabetes supplies. Putting these items in your carry-on is your best bet, so they are easily accessible and you don’t have to worry if your checked bag is lost. Make sure these items aren’t stored in a place where they may overheat — such as a parked car in the hot sun.

Items related to diabetes care are exempt from the airline’s 3.4 ounce liquid rule – so feel free to bring gel packs to keep insulin cool and juice boxes for a fast-acting carb. Always have some healthy snacks on hand such as fruit, nuts and raw veggies.

Enjoy yourself, but be vigilant

Vacation is time to relax, but you must still take the proper steps to avoid any health complications. This includes checking your blood sugar often and making adjustments accordingly, especially if you are going to be more active than usual.

In addition, make sure not to go overboard during meal times. It can be easy to overeat on vacation but choosing low-carb and low-calorie meal options is always best.

Lastly, make note of any pharmacies and clinics in the area in case of an emergency or if you need additional medication.

Traveling with diabetes doesn’t have to be a big ordeal. As long as you’re properly prepared, you can enjoy your trip stress-free.

UCF Health offers primary and specialty endocrinology care for patients with diabetes.

Weekly Health Tips are brought to you by UCF Health, the College of Medicine’s physician practice. Offering primary and specialty care under one roof, UCF Health treats patients age 16 and up in primary care and age 18 and up for specialty care. Most major insurance plans are accepted. Two locations are now open: the original in East Orlando at Quadrangle and University boulevards just blocks from the main UCF campus, and the newest one in Medical City at Narcoossee Road and Tavistock Lakes Boulevard. Information for both facilities can be found at, or call (407) 266-DOCS to schedule an appointment.

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