Catching a cold, being constipated and suffering from food poisoning are some of the worst things that can happen to you on a trip. They’re also very real threats that can ruin a carefully planned and long anticipated trip.
Mat and I do everything we can to stay healthy before and during our trips so that we can enjoy each day to the fullest. Here are some of the things we do to reduce our risk of getting sick and feeling crappy (pun intended!) on the road:
Get enough sleep
This is especially important the week before we leave because we want our bodies to be well rested and able to handle the stress we’re about to put them through. During trips, we also give ourselves time to rest during the day and we try to sleep for 8 hours at night.
Wash those hands
Our hands come into contact with things that may, or may not, be covered in unsavoury deposits – especially on travel days. If we’re at a bus station, airport or train station, we wash our hands as often as possible, especially before eating or rubbing our eyes (which happens a lot when we’re tired!). We’re also not afraid to change seats if we’re sitting near someone who is sneezing and coughing – being polite has it’s limits.
Take a daily multivitamin
On the road, there are days (and sometimes weeks) when we don’t eat all of the fruits and veggies that we should. To make sure we’re not missing any essentials we take a multivitamin every day, plus some extra vitamin C if we feel like we’re coming down with a cold. Right now we’re taking the Vegan Society VEG1 chewable tablets, which we love. A more complete vegan multi that we sometimes buy is the Platinum VitaVegan.
Drink some greens
We’re often either constipated (or the opposite) when we’re travelling (tmi, sorry). I don’t know what it is, but our digestive systems freak out when we go anywhere. To keep this under control, we drink a glass of water mixed with a “green” powder every day. Right now we’re loving the chocolate Vega All-in-One Nutritional Shake because it has protein, greens, fibre and antioxidants, all of which helps us stay balanced and regular. I only wish it was certified organic…
We usually travel with a tote bag full of snacks to make sure we have healthy options wherever we go. Some of our faves include hummus and crackers, stir fried veggies and rice, trail mix, instant oatmeal, fruit salad, LÄRABARs, bananas (unless we’re going through customs), dark chocolate, etc.
Avoid refined sugar
Refined sugar depresses our immune systems in a big way which makes us even more vulnerable to getting sick. We stay away from candy, soda, and desserts when we’re travelling even though it’s very tempting to indulge when we’re on a trip. We usually carry some dark chocolate bars with us to satisfy any cravings we have on the road.
When we do get sick
Even with all of these precautions, there’s nothing that completely protects us from getting sick. Here’s a peek at what we carry in our medicine bag to help us cope with the top 6 health issues we’ve had on our trips (keep in mind that we’re not doctors and this is not medical advice!):
- Motion Sickness: ginger pills and antiemetics (Gravol, Dramamine, etc)
- Headaches: peppermint oil roll-on and Advil
- Colds: garlic capsules, oregano oil, Neo Citran, Nyquil and sugar-free throat lozenges
- Constipation: glycerin suppositories
- Diarrhea: activated charcoal capsules, Imodium
- Food Poisoning: oregano oil and activated charcoal capsules
I’d love to know what you do to stay healthy on the road! Do you have any tips or tricks we should know about?