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Mitigating Current Travel Issues

As many of you may know by now, I'm a long-time truck driver and a fellow diabetic. As I travel the United States on a daily basis, I notice new things everywhere I go. Some of you are also truckers or travel for a living as well. If you travel for a living or are traveling for another reason, you may encounter some of the recent issues that I've experienced.

Restaurants and truck stops are closing earlier

For the past two months, I've noticed many restaurants that used to be open 24 hours a day have been closing at night. Others have been closing the dining rooms to patrons, like last year's lockdowns due to the pandemic. Reasons that I've heard for these earlier closures or complete closures were due to employee shortages.

Plan ahead for travel with type 2 diabetes

Being diabetic, planning ahead for food choices is important because you don't want to be out on your travels and not have anything to eat but processed food or "unhealthy" food. This could mess up your diabetes management real quick. This is how I plan ahead for travel, considering both food and fuel, as some places are even closing the entire gas station or truck stop.

Some tools that help me eat healthier on the road

I have an electric cooler in my truck so that I can store food and drinks that meet my diet standards. I also currently have a lunchbox-shaped stove that's comparable to a hot plate. Although it takes a while for the food to heat, it works.

The hot plate plugs into the power outlet of my truck. During the day, sometimes I will order an extra sub sandwich on wheat bread to keep in a cooler, in case I can't find an open restaurant later on. I also plan on getting an air fryer soon for my truck to help with cooking on the move.

Making the best of gas station foods

Many truck stops and gas stations have hard-boiled eggs and some other deli-style food to eat. Sometimes on the road, my only hot food option is hotdogs on the roller grill. In this case, I order two hotdogs and will eat them only with toppings or without the bun. Other times, I will use a slice of whole-grain bread that I have in my truck, or take one bun and tear it in half. When it comes to tough choices like this, it's important to improvise for the sake of controlling diabetes.

Food prices are rising everywhere

The next problem with eating on the road is the ever-increasing food prices. While the higher cost of almost everything can be frustrating, there could be a silver lining. If you're struggling with portion control, the higher cost could actually be a motivator to cut back on portion sizes. And that may help with weight loss and better blood sugar numbers. There are also budget-friendly pantry foods that you can keep on hand while traveling.

Controlling what we can by turning negatives into positives

While we can't change the current worker shortage or increasing food prices, we can turn a negative situation into a positive one. This is how I've looked at things since getting my diabetes diagnosis over six years ago. I embraced it and made it a positive. Being negative about surely wasn't going to motivate me to stay healthy and manage my diabetes.

What have you seen on the road?

We'd love to hear from fellow Type2Diabetes.com members about what issues you're currently facing while traveling, and what you do to mitigate these problems. We certainly hope you can find the silver lining as well.

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