Rainy season brings the much-awaited respite from the scorching summer heat. However, you cannot avoid the changes it brings. This humid weather can increase the risk of several health problems including respiratory problems, skin or foot complications, food borne illness and increased risk of infections. While taking care of health is important for everyone but it is crucial for people with diabetes especially during monsoons.
Here are some important care tips for people with diabetes to protect their health and manage diabetes better while enjoying the season to its fullest:
Take Good Care of Your Skin and Feet
Diabetes affects all organs; whether its skin or feet which are particularly vulnerable. Although daily selfcare should be a year-long routine for people with diabetes. But, maintaining skin and foot hygiene is of utmost importance especially in monsoon due to increased risk of infections. Here are some handy tips to remember this rainy season:
- Wherever you go, keep an extra pair of footwear and clothing with you. As wet and dirty feet or skin from contaminated rain water increase the risk of bacterial and fungal growth.
- After coming back from rain, bathe and wash the feet with soap and water. You must also dry them well to prevent the growth of any infection.
- Keep your skin and feet soft by applying some moisturiser as dryness increase the chances of cuts or cracks which can lead to infections.
- Keep your nails clean and trimmed. Also, place your wet shoes in the open, preferably in the sun, to dry out and eliminate bacterial growth.
- Use talcum powder on skin folds, on the feet, between toes before you wear clothes, socks and closed footwear in order to keep these areas dry.
- Wear comfortable slipper or footwear all the time. Avoid walking bare feet even at home as germs and infections are very high this season.
- Make sure your footwear is made of a comfortable material which doesn’t bite you. Avoid using plastic or non-breathable material footwear.
- Regularly monitor every nook and corner of your body especially feet. Simple things like boils, corn, rashes or cuts could get infected and lead to serious complications.
Eat Balanced Diet and Keep Yourself Hydrated
Standing in the rain and snacking on your favourite chaat may sound like a fun idea, but it is a big NO for people with diabetes. They should avoid eating out especially street food — to avoid food poisoning and other foodborne illnesses such as cholera and diarrhoea.
- Have freshly cooked home-made food, so you can be sure of the hygiene, quality and the nutritional value of your food.
- Eat small and frequent meals which are easy to digest. Avoid the temptations and ditch oily, fried and spicy food preparations.
- Make sure you wash all the fruits and vegetables thoroughly before eating. During monsoons, these are more likely to be infested by worms.
- Drink plenty of liquids to prevent dehydration. Avoid aerated and caffeinated beverages, instead opt for boiled or filtered water, home-made soups, ginger or green tea, etc.
- Always keep some healthy snacks handy when you go out. As rainy season may cause unpredicted delays and long gaps can cause blood sugar fluctuations.
Monsoon Blues – Tips to Prevent
The humid and filthy conditions in monsoon plays a host for many disease-causing germs and bacteria, which further result in diseases like dengue, malaria, viral fever and stomach trouble. Asthma, allergies, respiratory tract or eye infections are also quite common during monsoon.
- Boost Your Immunity – Eat food that boost immunity to fight against common cold, flu or infections e.g. citrus fruits like lemon or orange, bell peppers, garlic, ginger, nuts and yogurt.
- Monitor blood sugars regularly – As high blood sugars increase the risk of infections. In case you observe any changes in your results, be sure to inform your doctor immediately.
- Don’t skip your exercise routine – It may seem easy to skip your exercise routine if it is raining, but lack of physical activity will obviously send blood sugars for a toss and increase risk of illness. If you are unable to go out then go for a gym or do some simple exercises at home e.g. climb stairs, dance with the music or try some skipping, squats, push-ups or stretching.
- Pay attention to senior citizens – Special care for the elderly diabetics is warranted especially during monsoon. Blood sugar fluctuations, monsoon fall and infections are common among them. Caregivers should keep an eye on their health to avoid untoward incidences.
Monsoons bring a refreshing and mostly welcome change to the weather. People with diabetes can enjoy this season to its fullest with a little bit of extra care and precaution. This extra effort can go a long way in keeping you fit and healthy the rest of the year!
Have a Happy and Healthy Monsoon!
From the Expert Desk
Ms. Bhawana Rani
She is a proficient diabetes expert and a passionate medical writer. She has over 9 years of experience in the field of diabetes and nutrition. She specializes in educating and developing teaching and training tools for patients and healthcare professionals on different aspects of diabetes education and management. Apart from diabetes, her special interest is writing on various other subjects like health, lifestyle, wellness, nutrition and research.