Managing Diabetes in the Heat
How to keep your cool during the hottest time of year.
Did you know that people who have diabetes—both type 1 and type 2—feel the heat more than people who don’t have diabetes? Some reasons why:
Certain diabetes complications, such as damage to blood vessels and nerves, can affect your sweat glands so your body can’t cool as effectively. That can lead to heat exhaustion and heat stroke, which is a medical emergency.
People with diabetes get dehydrated (lose too much water from their bodies) more quickly. Not drinking enough liquids can raise blood sugar, and high blood sugar can make you urinate more, causing dehydration. Some commonly used medicines like diuretics (“water pills” to treat high blood pressure) can dehydrate you, too.
High temperatures can change how your body uses insulin. You may need to test your blood sugar more often and adjust your insulin dose and what you eat and drink.
Drink plenty of water.
Test your blood sugar often.
Keep medicines, supplies, and equipment out of the heat.
Stay inside in air-conditioning when it’s hottest.
Wear loose, light clothing.
Make a plan in case you lose power.
Have a go-bag ready for emergencies.
It’s the Heat and the Humidity
Even when it doesn’t seem very hot outside, the combination of heat and humidity (moisture in the air) can be dangerous. When sweat evaporates (dries) on your skin, it removes heat and cools you. It’s harder to stay cool in high humidity because sweat can’t evaporate as well.
Whether you’re working out or just hanging out, it’s a good idea to check the heat index—a measur Continue reading