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The season is changing! Fall is rapidly approaching, the temperature is cooling and back to school is in full swing. Many enjoy this time of year but for some it also means the dreaded cold and flu season.  Remember to get your flu vaccine this year and every year! When living with diabetes, there are some important things to consider if you become sick.


When you are sick, you are at higher risk of becoming dehydrated, especially if you are vomiting or have diarrhea. Dehydration can cause your blood sugars to rise.  Aim to drink 1 cup of liquid every hour to avoid becoming dehydrated. It’s also important that the liquid is low in sugar and caffeine. Here are some examples:

  • Water

  • Clear soups or broth

  • Herbal tea

  • Low-sugar electrolyte replacement drinks (ex: Hydralyte)

If you become dehydrated, you may need to stop taking some medications. Certain blood pressure pills,  diabetes pills and even some pain medications may need  to be stopped when you are sick. It is a good idea to speak to your pharmacist about which medications should be stopped before getting sick. Keep a list of these medications nearby and refer to it if you do become sick.

How can I know if I am dehydrated? Here are some signs and symptoms you may have:

  • Vomiting

  • Diarrhea

  • Severe abdominal pain

  • Fever

  • Dizziness

  • Light-headed

  • Yellow urine

Since your blood sugar can be affected when you are sick, it is important to check your blood sugar more frequently. Set a timer every 4 hours to remind yourself to check your blood sugar.  If you are on insulin or have Type 1 diabetes, its important to speak to your  diabetes educator or diabetes educator pharmacist about how to manage your insulin and to plan ahead before becoming sick.


Here is a list of medications to stop taking if you are sick and unable to stay hydrated:


Diabetes Pills


Glumetza®/Glucophage® (Metformin) Forxiga® (Dapagliflozin) Invokana® (Canagliflozin) Jardiance® (Empagliflozin)


Blood Pressure Pills


Vasotec® (Enalapril) Monopril® (Fosinopril) Prinivil®/Zestril® (Lisinopril) Coversyl® (Perindopril) Accupril ® (Quinapril) Altace® (Ramipril)

Mavik® (Trandolapril) Lasix® (Furosemide) Hygroton® (Chlorthalidone) Lozide® (Indapamide)

Atacand® (Candesartan) Teveten® (Eprosartan) Avapro® (Irbesartan) Cozaar® (Losartan) Olmetec® (Olmesartan) Micardis® (Telmisartan) Diovan® (Valsartan) Hydrochlorothiazide Zaroxolyn® (Metolazone) Aldactone® (Spironolactone)


Anti-Inflammatory Pain Medications


Advil®/Motrin® (Ibuprofen) Toradol® (Ketorolac) Celebrex® (Celecoxib) Aleve®/Naprosyn® (Napoxen) Voltaren® (Diclofenac)



With these tips you’ll be ready to navigate cold and flu season with ease and a speedy recovery!