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Manage Your Diabetes on the Road



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If you have a chronic health condition but love to travel, there are ways to cut down on your stress.

Davida Kruger, author of "The Diabetes Travel Guide," offers these tips for diabetics:

- Know what your health insurance will cover and how it works at your destination. Wear a medical identification bracelet, and carry a letter from your doctor outlining your condition and treatment. Don't forget to list allergies.

- Take twice as many of your diabetic supplies as you need in case of an emergency such as flight delays or lost luggage.

- Keep your diabetic supplies with you at all times. Don't pack them in checked luggage. Also keep the letter from your doctor with you to help ease your way through security checkpoints.

- Pack snacks in case you are forced to miss a meal because of travel delays.

- If you're traveling over multiple time zones, check with your doctor to see if you need to alter your medication schedule.

Arthritis also requires some pre-trip planning:

- When booking a flight, ask for a seat with extra legroom.

- Reserve a handicapped-access room at your hotel or one close to the elevator.

- If you have medications that need to be kept cool, ask flight attendants to refrigerate them during your flight. When making lodging reservations, book a room that has a refrigerator.

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ONLINE:

American Diabetes Association: www.diabetes.org

Arthritis Foundation: www.arthritis.org

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SOURCE: Abbott Laboratories

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Edited and compiled by Phyllis Stone.

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(c) 2004, Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Distributed by Knight Ridder/Tribune News Service.

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