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Surviving with Diabetes

Diabetes sufferers know that maintaining a controlled environment where they have a steady supply of medication and balanced meals is important for good health.  However, at times it can be impossible to maintain this perfect environment.  When the world is out of control due to a man-made or natural disaster, you need to know how to look out for yourself to ensure your good health and long term wellness.

One common-sense tactic is to create an emergency kit specifically targeted for your diabetic symptoms.  While this is a practical approach, you won’t find such kits readily available in local stores.  Instead, you will need to assemble your own diabetic emergency kit.  Fortunately, building a solid emergency kit doesn’t take long, and it isn’t terribly expensive.  With a bit of forward planning, you will be able to survive being separated from medical care, cut off from the power grid, and isolated from supermarkets for several days or even a few weeks.

Planning For Medical Needs

The first step in building a truly useful emergency kit is planning for your medical needs.  You’ll need to lay in stores of your regular medication as well as any special emergency shot supplies or pills that you take when your blood sugar is out of control.  For a basic diabetic survival kit, just over one week’s worth of medication should be sufficient.  This will help you get through storms, seasonal bad weather, and most short-term emergencies.

Planning For Public Service Outages

Along with access to pharmacies and emergency rooms, the next items you’ll lose in a disaster situation are public services.  Water and electrical services are hit even in strong thunderstorms, so you know you won’t be able to rely on them in a true emergency.   Thus, you will want to have a good supply of water in your kit.  Back this up with water purification pills to ensure that you stay well hydrated for the duration.

When the power goes out temperature control quickly becomes an issue for insulin users.  Flashlights are handy for light, but you need to keep your insulin cool!  Thus, add some cooling packs to your emergency kit.  These packs can be bought in a number of places in addition to your local pharmacy – sporting goods and camping stores actually often have some very affordable items you can add to your kit.

You will also find it worthwhile to buy an insulated carrier from your local grocery store for your kit.   You can store your cooling packs inside to save space, and then use the bag as a mini-fridge to extend the life of your cooling packs when you are chilling your insulin.  As a result, when disaster cuts the power, you can crack your packs and have a new cooling spot for your insulin ready to go in minutes.

Planning For Balanced Meals

Finally, you will want to ensure that you have good food available to eat so that you can maintain your blood sugar levels responsibly.  You already have water in your kit as a hedge against public service outages, but you now need to complete your meal and snack menus.

You’ll want to plan to eat a bit more than you do usually.  In times of stress, your body will be burning through food more quickly and your blood sugar will be more volatile.  Don’t be hungry – stock up on foods that are healthy and ready to go fast!

Some of the best foods for your diabetic kit are naturally dried fruits, vegetables, and meat products.  Health food stores offer many choices, although you should read the labels to ensure they haven’t been treated with high fructose corn syrup.  Combine your dried basics with soup mixes, shelf-stable pouches of tuna or poultry, and nuts.  Stevia, flavored drink mixes, and sugar-free desserts like puddings can keep and end a meal with a touch of sweet to shut off your cravings.  You may also find a bottle of chromium picolinate helpful, as this supplement helps to regulate blood sugar and works with most diabetic diets.

Feel Prepared

All in all, while the world can spin out of control fast, you can prepare for the worst quickly.  Even with severe diabetic symptoms, you can maintain your blood sugar levels and good health on your own.  Simply take the time now to lay away a store of medication, stock up on cooling aids, and shop for water and food rations.  When your diabetic survival kit is finished, you will feel prepared to face whatever the world throws at you with confidence, knowing you’ve taken the right steps to protect your heath until the crisis has passed.

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