While you can’t stop thinking of how amazing your trip will be, traveling may expose you to germs and viruses and interfere with your regular exercise and diet routine. This may throw your health off course and make you sick. However, I’m sure you definitely don’t plan on falling ill while traveling or on vacation. So let’s find out how to stay healthy when traveling!
This article gives you simple tips you can follow to ensure a smooth journey and that you get to your destination as healthy as before the journey began.
1. Avoid aisle seats
Whether traveling by bus or plane, the seat you choose is a big deal. Always select a seat that’s away from where everyone else is passing. This will not only give you rest from a neighbor that makes you get up each time, but it will also minimize your exposure to germs.
According to a 2008 investigation, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, sitting on the aisle seats of a plane increases the risk of contracting an outbreak virus.
This is mainly because as people walk up and down the aisle from outside and others from the bathroom, they tend to hold onto the top of the aisle seats, potentially transmitting the germs.
2. Get plenty of sleep
Getting enough sleep is essential in promoting a strong immune system, boosting energy levels, and fighting fatigue, especially from a tiresome journey.
When traveling, make yourself comfortable and fall asleep whenever you feel like it throughout the journey.
Also, if your journey involves crossing different time zones, your circadian rhythm may be disrupted, and that may affect different dynamics of your immune functions, thus disrupting your defenses. To minimize the chances of being affected by the change in time zones, understand where you are traveling to and start shifting your bedtime and sleep time to match your destination, at least a week prior.
If that’s impossible to do, ensure you are well hydrated throughout the journey and when you land, spend some time in the sun as it can help you adjust to the new time zone. Top 10 Benefits Of Getting Enough Sleep.
3. Watch what you eat and drink
Always ensure you stay away from salads and any raw vegetables because they get easily contaminated, and you can’t be sure they were handled properly. Also, if you are not vegan, animal products such as meat may be a source of food born disease, and you may want to stay off until you reach your destination.
Additionally, consider drinking only bottled water as tap water may not be safe to drink. This includes ice cubes, which you are not sure which water went into them.
It’s always good to carry healthy snacks such as fresh fruit, nuts, roasted pumpkin seeds, packed celery or carrot sticks with hummus, homemade trail mix, etc. Always go for something high in fiber to enable you to feel satisfied longer, to help prevent snacking unnecessarily.
Besides, you don’t need to eat a heavy meal when traveling. Just something light to enable you to get to your destination. This will also prevent unnecessary trips to the bathroom, where you’re likely to be exposed to more germs. Best Low Carb Snacks
4. Use hand sanitizer and wet naps
Water and soap may not always be available when traveling. So, always be prepared to keep off any disease-causing pathogens you’re likely to be in contact with by regularly disinfecting your hands. Sometimes you may want to do it even after washing your hands, especially after using a washroom that requires you to manually close the door behind you.
You’ll also need to properly clean your hands before eating. Always ensure you have antibacterial wipes and a sanitizer with you.
5. Protect your skin
This may involve applying sunscreen because you need it when spending time outdoors or a mosquito repellant cream or spray if you visit a mosquito-infested region.
6. Avoid energy drinks, soda, and alcohol
These beverages are often high in calories, and you are more than likely to overconsume them. Besides, they are high in added sugar, which has been shown to cause inflammation, obesity, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes. Added sugar has also been linked to depression, anxiety, dementia, and certain types of cancer. See Dangers Of Energy Drinks.
Go for unsweetened lemonade or sparkling water if you feel like drinking something other than water.
7. Stay hydrated
Drinking water is very beneficial when traveling, mainly because it helps caution your joints, such as the knees, which you are likely to keep in one position for long.
Also, the air-conditioning on the plane is often dry and dehydrating, especially for long trips.
Water is also essential for the transportation of oxygen and nutrients into the cells, it promotes bacterial elimination through urine, keeps your pressure within normal, regulates body temperature, maintains electrolyte balance, and aids digestion. Benefits Of Drinking Water.
8. Don’t forget your first aid kit
It’s always important to carry basic first aid supplies in case of an emergency, especially when traveling with kids. Some essential things to bring include are ibuprofen or acetaminophen for pain or fever, antibacterial wipes or gel, topical antibiotic ointment, insect repellant, anti-diarrheal medication like Imodium, and motion sickness remedy.
And in case you’re on any medication, pack them in your carry-on, just in case your checked luggage gets lost in transit.
Travel time is often when most people don’t pay much attention to their health; what they eat, whether they are getting enough sleep, hydrating enough, and generally taking good care of their health.
Unfortunately, this is one of those periods where you are likely to come into contact with numerous germs and diseases causing pathogens.
So, being extremely mindful of your health while traveling is essential.
Some things you can do to stay healthy when traveling include getting plenty of sleep, avoiding the aisle seat if traveling by plane.
Be mindful of what you eat and drink, hydrate enough, protect your skin, use sanitizers or antibacterial wipes where necessary, and pack basic first aid supplies in case of an emergency.
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