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Travelling and Diabetes

Whether for work or pleasure, travel can and should be fun and having diabetes doesn’t mean you can’t travel. With good planning, your trip can be safe, fun and hassle-free whether you’re going interstate or overseas.

While traveling:
  • Make sure you eat well, consider how different foods will affect you
  • Make sure you check your blood glucose levels regularly
  • For people with type 1 diabetes- carry the right lollies with you (overseas brands may not be as strong)
  • If you are flying, prepare for long delays or misplaced baggage (just in case!)
  • If traveling overseas, time zones and extreme climates may affect you and how you manage your diabetes, talk to your doctor or diabetes educator

Planning your travel itinerary & bookings
  • Plan travel itinerary and make bookings.
  • If you wear an electronic device to monitor blood glucose levels or infuse insulin, check with the airline to see if these devices can be operated in-flight.
  • Arrange travel insurance for health and belongings.
  • Check vaccination requirements.

Check Airline Security Regulations

Be sure to make arrangements in advance so that you comply with Australian airline security regulations specifically for people with diabetes. The regulations are:
  • You must carry all diabetes supplies including testing equipment, insulin and Glucagon delivery devices (syringes and pen needles and insulin pump consumables) in the hand luggage of the person who has diabetes and whose name appears on the airline ticket. It is advisable to pack extra insulin in checked-in luggage.
  • Your name must appear on all insulin and/or Glucagon script labels.
  • You must carry scripts for all medications and check them before you go to make sure they are readable. Each script must include your name, the name and type of your medication and your doctor’s contact details.
  • You must carry your National Diabetes Services Scheme (NDSS) card, as it is accepted as primary proof that a person with insulin treated diabetes needs to carry with them their diabetes equipment. Supplementary photographic proof of identify, such as a driver’s licence or passport may also be required.
  • You must carry several copies of a letter from your doctor which you will need to get through Customs. The letter should outline any medical conditions, any medications you take and the devices you use for your insulin and blood glucose testing, such as insulin pens, syringes and needles or pump unit. It should also stress the importance of carrying your medications with you. Check beforehand the letter is readable!
  • International travellers can carry no more that 100 ml of liquid per container, including aerosols and gels, in their carry-on baggage. All liquids must fit into a transparent resealable plastic bag no bigger than one litre (approx. 20 cm by 20 cm). People with diabetes who need to carry supplies of insulin are exempt; however, they will be required to present the insulin at the security point and carry proof of their condition and need for insulin.
    If you are not travelling with an Australian carrier, be sure to check in advance with your chosen airline for specific security guidelines.

Arrange Travel Insurance

You should arrange travel insurance, both for you and your belongings. Make sure your accident and health cover applies to pre-existing conditions and the places you will visit.
The Australian Government has arrangements with a number of countries providing travellers with benefits similar to Medicare, but these are typically only for acute or emergency care.

Talk With Your Doctor
  • Make appointment to have vaccinations (if required).
  • Make appointment with your doctor or credentialled diabetes educator to discuss travel plans, time zones, and other ‘travel’ tablets required.
  • List and buy any special clothing items required, for example comfortable, well fitting shoes.

More information from diabetesaustralia.com.au

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General Information

Vitamins & Sources

Vitamins don't give you calories or energy but do help you stay healthy. You cannot make vitamins so you must get them from the foods you eat.Vitamins are only needed in small amounts and most people can meet their vitamin needs by eating a variety of healthy foods. Some people may need extra vitamins to help them meet their special needs.

There are two types of vitamins:
  • Water soluble vitamins include vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, vitamin C, biotin and folate. They are not stored in large amounts in the body, and any extra is lost through your urine.
  • Fat soluble vitamins include vitamins A, D, E and K and they can be stored in your body. High amounts of fat soluble vitamins are not recommended, as these can cause health problems.

VitaminFunctionFood Sources
Vitamin B1
Helps with energy production in your body.Whole grains, enriched grains
Liver, pork, dried beans, nuts and seeds
Vitamin B2
Helps with energy production in your body.
Helps your body use other B vitamins.
Soybeans, meat and poultry, liver and eggs
Milk, cheese, yogurt
Whole grains, enriched grains
Vitamin B3
Helps your body to use protein, fat and carbohydrate to make energy.
Helps enzymes work properly in your body.
Peanut butter, meat, fish, poultry
Whole grains, enriched grains
Allows your body to use protein, fat and carbohydrate from food.
Sweet potatoes
Nonfat milk, yogurt
Peanuts, almonds, eggs, liver, soy protein
*The biotin content in food can vary greatly
Vitamin B6
Helps your body to make and use protein and glycogen which is the stored energy in your muscles and liver.
Helps form hemoglobin which carries oxygen in your blood.
Potatoes, bananas
100% bran, instant oatmeal
Meat, fish, poultry, liver, soybeans, chickpeas, lentils, pistachio, nuts, sunflower seeds
Vitamin B12
Works with the vitamin folate to make DNA.
Helps to make healthy blood cells. Low levels of vitamin B12 can cause a type of anemia.
Keeps nerves working properly.
Milk, cheese, yogurt, fortified soy or rice beverages
Meat, fish, poultry, liver, eggs, fortified soy products
(Folic acid)
Helps to produce and maintain DNA and cells.
Helps to make red blood cells and prevent anemia.
Getting enough folic acid lowers the risk of having a baby with birth defects like spina bifida.
Asparagus, cooked spinach, romaine lettuce, Brussels sprouts, beets, broccoli, corn, green peas, oranges, orange juice
Bread, enriched pasta, wheat germ
Liver, dried beans, soybeans, chickpeas, lentils, sunflower seeds, flaxseeds
*Folic acid is the type of folate found in Vitamin supplements and fortified foods.
Vitamin C
May help prevent cell damage and reduce risk for certain cancers, heart disease and
other diseases.
Helps heal cuts and wounds and keeps
gums healthy.Protects you from infections by keeping yourimmune system healthy.
Increases the amount of iron your body absorbs from some foods.
Citrus fruits such as oranges, grapefruits and
their juices, kiwi,strawberries, mangoes,
Red, yellow and green peppers, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, tomatoes,raw dark leafy vegetables
Vitamin A
Helps you to see in the day and at night.
Protects you from infections by keeping
skin and other body parts healthy.
Promotes normal growth and development.
Liver, some fish
Milk, cheese
Carotenoids are not vitamins but some types can turn into vitamin A in the body. Act as antioxidants which protect your body from damage caused by harmful molecules called free radicals.
Cantaloupe, pink grapefruit, tomatoes, broccoli, dark green leafy vegetables like spinach, beet greens and Swiss chard, dark orange vegetables such as carrots and sweet potatoes
Vitamin D
Increases the amount of calcium and phosphorus your body absorbs from foods. Deposits calcium and phosphorus in bones and teeth, making them stronger and healthier. Protects against infections by keeping your immune system healthy.
Milk, fortified soy and rice beverages
Fortified margarine
Some fish, eggs, organ meats, fish liver oils
Vitamin E
Helps to maintain a healthy immune system and other body processes.
Acts as an antioxidant and protects cells from damage.
Vegetable oils
Avocados, leafy green vegetables
Wheat germ, sunflower seeds, some nuts, peanut butter
Vitamin K
Makes proteins that cause our blood to clot, when you are bleeding.
Involved in making body proteins for your blood, bones and kidneys.
Broccoli, soybeans, dark green leafy vegetables such as kale, collards, turnip/beet greens and spinach

More from www.dietitians.ca

The information in the above were collected from the internet,
either from government websites or from reasonably reliable health information sources.
They are for general information only and should not replace the need of seeking medical care during illnesses.

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