About to head into your once-a-year travel adventure? Hold on a moment… Your bags might be packed, but there is an essential aspect of travel that you might not be prepared for. What about a strategy for staying healthy before, during, and after your trip?
From poor food choices to the consequences of not having enough sleep, travel can wreak havoc on your personal health. Among the common illnesses that travelers contract, the list ranges from diarrhea to catching cases of flu and colds, to food poisoning, and more.
Getting sick while you travel could have you returning home early. Don’t let that happen to you. While the point of your trip is to enjoy yourself and have fun, make sure your fun is not at the cost of your health.
Here are ways to practice self-care before your trip, which will keep you in fine form during and after your travels.
1. Get a teeth cleaning!
Say “cheese!” Are your teeth ready for all the photos that you will be taking? Nothing mars a travel photo more than a dull smile. But that’s not the only reason you should visit the dentist before your travels. Most importantly, you don’t want to deal with gum pain or cavities.
According to Kreeb family dentistry, a dental office in Huntersville, “Plaque is a sticky, almost invisible film that forms on the teeth. It is a growing colony of living bacteria, food debris, and saliva. The bacteria produce toxins (poisons) that inflame the gums. This inflammation is the start of periodontal disease!”
2. Erase your sleep debt.
Starting off on your travels already carrying a sleep debt will only put you further into the hole. And if you are crossing time zones, it’s likely you’ll experience jet lag. That, plus the excitement of being in a new place,will make that hole even deeper.
But sleep is essential to the body in keeping its immune system in tip-top shape. Sleep is also needed for sharp motor function and cognitive ability. And then, don’t forget, lack of sleep can turn the happiest camper into a crank.
A week leading up to your trip, focus on getting in a solid 7 to 8 hours every night. This way you can start your travels in good spirits and with your immune system in peak condition.
3. Tank up on good fuel.
Meeting exotic foods on your travels will tempt you with options you would not otherwise consider in your at-home diet. You are on vacation and the point is to enjoy yourself. But prior to your travels, eat as healthy as you can.
Put foods into your body that will translate into more energy, not less. Energizing foods include fruits, vegetables, and whole grains and whole foods. Foods that sap your energy and create inflammation are deep fried foods, junk snacks, and sugar.
4. Go cold turkey (just for a bit).
Skip the afternoon happy hour and the weekend drinks. When you do this, you will be giving your body a little extra time to work on repair instead of filtering out the alcohol (poison) from your system. It also means you get to cut back on extra calories and lose those couple of pounds you had been meaning to get to.
Besides, going back to zero can help you get more of a buzz when you do drink during your trip. It further means less money spent on booze and more money for other worthwhile experiences.
5. Create a health plan for your trip.
Love your vacation eating, but hate coming home several pounds heavier around the middle? Dread needing to work it all off at the gym?
Studies and surveys show that Americans usually gain an average of 1 to 2 pounds during the holidays. And that weight typically sticks around and amounts to the 10 to 20 pounds of weight gain for each decade of life, per the average adult.
This year, create an eating and exercising plan that you can take with you on your travels. Research workouts that can be done at an airport or in your hotel room. And look for local foods and dining options that are both nutritious and delicious.
Buy dried fruits and nuts at the local grocery, instead of hitting the junk food aisle.
Enjoying vacation and your travels should never be at the expense of your health. Your travels will end in a week or two, but the ramifications of your decisions on your trip will last for much longer after you step back through your door.
Article Submitted By Community Writer