The Things I Carry 

Here is a rundown of the diabetes gear I am currently using and my methods for lugging it around.

Accu-Chek Aviva Expert Glucomoter


This is the best meter I have tried other than my old Omnipod PDM. The bolus advice feature has been invaluable to me, I realized how bad I actually sucked at counting carbs and calculating doses before trying this bad boy. The built in data analytics makes it easy to see trends and make insulin adjustments. The meter helps decrease insulin stacking by displaying insulin on board and has handy exercise adjustment features. It also runs on readily available AAA batteries making it ideal for travel. The Accu-Chek fast clix lancer is awesome too. The ability to load 6 lancets at a time is clutch! I only swap lancets once a week or so now instead of once a day. It’s the little things.

My only gripes with this meter are its size and the Accu-Chek Aviva test strips. Coming from a Freestyle Lite meter, the added bulk of the Aviva Expert took some getting used to, but its extra features make it worth the weight. While the Aviva strips boast higher reading accuracy they pale in comparison to Freestyle Lite strip’s ease of testing. Freestyle strips require about half as much blood as the Avivas and easily suck up blood from the side of the strip instead of the front. I sometimes find it tough to get enough blood in the Aviva strip in the dark or when I’m low and shaky.

From what I know about glucometers, the Aviva Expert is a top choice for T1Ds using multiple daily injections. Though a fellow T1D turned me onto the Freestyle Insulinx that boasts similar features. While I would love to give it a shot since I am partial to Freestyle strips, the Insulinx is apparently only available for free in Canada.

Insulin Flex Pens & Frio Cooling Sleeve

Frio Insulin Sleeve & Pens

When first diagnosed one of the hardest things to get used to was carrying around a pack or bag with my supplies everywhere. Over time I have gone through many packs but I think I have found a set-up that boasts both style and functionality.

This leather belt pouch fits my supplies perfectly and is low profile. This is my go-to day to day pouch.

Leather Belt Pouch

When I need something a little more rugged with extra space for more sweets and granola bars I rock this US Army medic’s pouch I picked up at an Army Surplus store. This thing is perfect for hiking and traveling.

Army Medic Pouch

To keep everything organized I put all my pen needles in this cute little pouch.

Small Pouch for Pen Needles


What diabetes gear do you use? How do you lug it around? Drop a comment below!


6 thoughts on “Gear

  1. Rachelle

    I use my Omnipod PDM as my meter. The less the better and it works well for me. I use the SumacLife hard shell case to carry supplies in. It is perfect for my PDM, test strips, lancing device, alcohol pads, extra PDM batteries and lancets, and I throw tegederm, skintac wipes Simpatch Dexcom sensor covers, and IV preps in there too. I also carry a small bag that contains two sleeves of glucose tabs, an extra pod, syringes and insulin just in case.

    I keep my valuables and small bag with extra supplies at my friend’s surf shop a block away and bring the hard case, a towel, my phone, a big bottle of juice and two Kind bars on the beach with me which works well.

    I still find it challenging to keep pods and sensors on in the water as I get tossed a lot (still learning). I have lost many of both! I use a ton of skintac wipes and tegederm. I also use Simpatch which fits perfectly around the sensor and really anchors the CGM adhesive down. Problem is, believe it or not, my transmitter ripped right off the sensor once! So now I put about 10 tegederms over it and keep it in my arm under my wetsuit!

    I don’t have much in the way of issues with lows. I like to start out around 200mg/dL and suspend my pump. I check every two hours and if below 100mg/dL I’ll drink about 20g CHO of juice and relax for 5 or 10 minutes. Luckily I’ve never had a bad low while surfing, but I agree it’s so important to be super cognizant of it and it helps to have a buddy!

    Also, I find that I get minor injuries most when I have been out there more than 4 hours. Time flies by quickly but I have to stop once I get noodle arms and start dragging my back foot popping up. The last time I got hit with exhaustion I got nailed by my board in the side of my ear and sported a massive black cauliflower ear for a few days. Lovely.

  2. Marnix

    Im using the Abbot Libre (tester) while surfing. It gives me the chance to test my blood sugar level while im out in the water. I carry the tester in a waterproof bad on my arm (the are where the sensors located, so I dont have to take the arm band off)

    1. Travelbetic Post author

      Hi Marnix! Thats great. The Abbot Libre looks awesome. Are you in the US? I believe it was just approved by the FDA here recently, I might have to try it out. No finger sticks sounds amazing. I hate having to finger stick to calibrate my Dexcom. Does the Libre transmit your data to your smart phone or only the receiver? Does it get annoying paddling with the receiver on your arm?

      Also, check out how I surf with my Dexcom and iphone to see my BG while surfing. (I don’t do this much anymore as i like my sensors to be on my legs and the bluetooth doesnt transmit well through the water

  3. Mandy

    Hey there! My husband is a type 1 diabetic and for him carrying his insulin, and meter was just annoying. He knew he needed all of it and just didn’t feel like walking with a backpack or bag everyday, some days he made me carry all of it in my purse. So after complaining for months we sat down and drew up something for him to have everything he needs to fit in his pocket. We came up with The Sugarcube. It is all of your necessities in one kit, we are still working on finalizing the tooling portion for a the meter to run the most accurate testing.
    Check us out on
    Let us know what you think.

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