Staying Healthy While Traveling

It’s been a long few years of little to no travel. International borders were closed, complicated COVID travel restrictions made things more difficult, and cruise travel dropped off completely.

Post COVID though, things are starting to pick back up. Even with increases in flight and gas prices, people are ready to get back to travel and finally take a long needed vacation.

Unlike pre-COVID days though, people are now much more aware of the vital importance of staying healthy while away from home. No one wants to ruin their vacation with a cold or travel bug but with the looming threat of COVID and mandatory quarantine periods, avoiding getting sick is on everyone’s minds.

Unfortunately, traveling does open you up to a lot more risk when it comes to sickness and injury.  While vacations are meant to be relaxing, traveling itself can often be stressful. Plus, traveling is much more likely to interrupt your healthy habits. Add to that the fact that you will be exposed to many new germs and it’s easy to see why a lot of people end up bringing home a travel bug along with a few souvenirs.

At Eric’s Health Food Shoppe, we are here to provide the community with healthy foods, snacks, and supplements along with healthy advice and motivation to lead a healthier life. If you are ready to book that ticket, pack your bags, and get back out into the world, we have some tips and tricks you might want to consider. 

Get Enough Sleep

Sleep is vital to health. Unfortunately, travel, especially if you are crossing time zones, can severely disrupt your circadian rhythm. Other things that can cause sleep issues include: early morning flights, long travel days, unfamiliar and uncomfortable hotel room beds, late nights out enjoying the destination’s nightlife, etc.

When you interrupt a normal sleep cycle or cut back on quality sleep, you are directly impacting your body’s immune system. Sleep is when the immune system really gets to work and fights off those nasty travel bugs. Without enough sleep, you’ll likely come home from your trip not only a bit sleep deprived but probably a bit sick.

There are a number of things you can do to help improve your sleep and circadian rhythm. First, consider slowly transitioning to whatever new time zone you’ll be visiting before your trip. Another option is to book your flight so as to arrive in the daytime. Exposure to sunlight in the new time zone will help you more quickly reset your internal clock. Fasting before and during a long flight can also help with your internal clock. 

Watch What you Eat & Stay Hydrated

One of the most common ways to get sick while traveling is through food or water. This is especially true if you are visiting somewhere without adequate infrastructure. That being said, any unfamiliar food can cause issues so you aren’t necessarily safe in more developed countries. 

Unclean water can hold dangerous bacteria and germs. Not drinking enough water though can cause even more issues. Make sure to research your travel destination beforehand to see if tap water is safe. If not, make sure you budget for buying water while on your trip.

Staying hydrated is a great way to keep your body healthy and water can help flush out harmful bacteria and germs. Remember, alcohol can be extremely dehydrating and if you will be enjoying more than a few nights out, you should make sure to stay extra hydrated to combat the effects.

When it comes to food, there are even more things to consider. Eating street food can be fun but be sure it is well cooked and the stand looks hygienic. Vacation and travel often means overdoing it when it comes to delicious but heavy food. If you are on a diet or have dietary restrictions, it will be much harder to accommodate.  Consider packing some of your own healthy snacks. Eric’s Health Food Shoppe has lots of great options.

Pack Some Supplements

In addition to some healthy snacks, you might also want to pack some other healthy essentials.

Supplements are a great way to ensure you are getting all your vital nutrients while traveling. It’s easy to overindulge on vacation and much harder to stick to healthy eating habits. In the short term, this might not do much damage but if you want to stay healthy and avoid getting sick, you’ll want to think about balance.

Supplements you might want to consider include:

Vitamin B

Vitamin B is a great way to keep your energy up when traveling. Being too tired to go out and see the sights could ruin a trip. Instead give your energy levels a boost with a vitamin B-12 supplement at breakfast.

Magnesium

Magnesium is vital for overall health. While you can get it from a healthy diet, it is easy to be deficient in it and even more likely when you are traveling and have a less consistent diet.

Turmeric

Travel can be stressful, both on the body and the mind. Turmeric is a great supplement option as it targets both. Research has shown turmeric can help reduce stress and anxiety. It is also helpful for lowering inflammation which can increase during travel due to physical challenges and environmental stressors.

All these supplements – along with healthy snacks, first-aid kit essentials, sleep aids and immunity boosters – can be found at Eric’s Health Food Shoppe. Stop by before your trip and make sure you are stocked up on everything you need.

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