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Back to Basics Travel Wellness

Staying healthy while traveling is, on paper, relatively easy if you keep a few basic “rules” in mind. These can’t, of course, prevent the random occurrence of being hit by a flu or nasty cold, but they should help keep you energized and lift the stress that traveling can place on ones body.

1. Hydrate. This is not only important during a flight, where the air can be dry, but during the rest of your trip as well. It’s easy to get caught up in the culture, sampling the local coffee, beer and wine, which is perfectly fine. Just don’t forget to drink some water as well. It’s important to check weather or not you can drink the tap water. If you’re unsure, go for bottled*.

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2. Eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. The local cuisine may or may not be rich with fruits and veggies. If it is, this makes it easier to pack in the nutrients they offer. If not, you might have to make an extra effort to obtain these. Either way, make sure to include these in your diet when traveling. Without them you may find the lack of nutrients makes you feel sluggish, which you probably don’t want on vacation. If you really feel you won’t be able to fit these important foods into your diet while traveling, plan ahead and pack the appropriate vitamins and supplements – while it’s generally better to get these from the plant source, this is better than not getting them at all.

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3. Get plenty of oxygen. Meaning spend time outdoors, preferably moving. Even if you’re taking a spa vacation where each day is filled with indoor pampering, take a break and go for a walk. While lying by the pool will indeed get you outside air, it doesn’t quite wake up your muscles and get your blood flowing the way some activity will. Again, the lack of oxygen could result in lethargy and sleepiness.

4. Stretch. Ever spent the day exploring a new city, only to realized you walked well more than you normally do in an average day and that you are quite sore the next day? Taking a few minutes to stretch at the end of the day, or even at intervals throughout the day (10 to 15 minutes total should be plenty), can help prevent feeling sore and inhibiting your activity the next day.

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5. Properly address jet lag. There are multiple theories on how to address jet lag – including staying up until 7 PM the day you land, taking a quick cat nap when you land to energize for the rest of the day and plenties of others. Regardless of your chosen method, it’s important to address it one way or another. This means, don’t run yourself into the ground and pretend you aren’t tired or think that if you just keep going day after day you’ll eventually overcome it. All this will do is make it worse in the long run. You could get exhaust yourself to the point where you lose a few days later in the trip, or you could get sick from lack of sleep. If you are tired, let yourself nap when needed. If you’re worried about zonking out and losing an entire day, set an alarm and don’t hit the snooze button. Whatever you do, just make sure that by the end of the second day, you’re getting your at least close to your normal amount of sleep. If you’re not, you’ll pay for it later in the trip.

*Chimera Travel is not promoting a particular type of water bottle based on the image in this post. This just happened to be the bottle in the picture taken.

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