Travel: the time to explore new environments. Environments filled with exotic flora and fauna and experimenting with local cuisines. It can be like playing roulette with our digestion, opening us up to attacks on our immune system.
However, none of that is a reason not to explore this beautiful planet of ours. So we’ve developed a list of some precautions to take before heading to the airport for your next exotic experience:
Rounding out your body’s vitamin and mineral content by taking a daily multivitamin is always a good idea, but it’s extra important when preparing for a trip that may include flying and dynamic accommodations. Be sure to include Zinc, B-complex, Vitamin C, and Vitamin D3 to strengthen your immune system before and after your trip.
Our intravenous vitamin treatments are tailored specifically to your biochemistry. The potent vitamins are mixed in a saline solution, bolstering your hydration level – an essential factor in keeping you tip-top while travelling.
While “drink more water” is self-explanatory, it’s twice as important when travelling. When spending time in an airplane, breathing recycled, dehumidified air, dehydration is just playing a waiting game that it’s bound to win. When the airline attendant asks to hand you a drink, skip the coffee and wine and opt for a bottle of water.
Travel is exciting! Experiencing new places, new situations, thrills, and the unexpected throws your body’s adrenal glands into high gear. Your mind may be on vacation, but your body is on active duty, so help it manage the activity with some natural supplements:
Adaptogens like Reishi, Ashwagandha, Holy Basil, and Siberian Ginseng can help fight stress, anxiety, and fatigue. Begin taking your preferred adaptogen at least a week before you travel. Natural supplements take time to build up to their peak efficiency. And for those afraid of flying, try a Passiflora supplement.
Antimicrobials are proven pathogen killers that can assist your digestive and immune systems in warding off new strains of bacteria your body may not be accustomed to. Start warding off traveller’s diarrhea early with antimicrobials like oil of oregano, grapefruit seed extract or colloidal silver.
Melatonin helps your body rebalance its circadian rhythm, or find homeostasis in its wake and sleep cycle. It’s the supplement of choice for fighting jet lag! Most melatonin supplements suggest taking the dose before going to bed in your new destination, and doing so for a couple of days until you feel you’ve adapted.
Probiotics – a topic we discuss regularly. Keeping your gut flora well-oiled (metaphorically speaking) is of extra importance while travelling because of the sheer breadth of possible encounters with new foods and drinks. Even a seemingly innocent salad could harbour a nasty surprise when eaten in a foreign land as water-borne bacteria differs significantly around the world – as do food care standards! Help keep your gut in shape before and during your trip by supplementing with a quality probiotic.
Ginger is world renown for easing nausea, upset stomach, indigestion, and even motion sickness. Sometimes there’s no need to try over-the-counter medication when a natural supplement is even better. Keep some natural ginger chews with you at all times for those unexpected moments. Moreover, taking digestive enzymes can help prevent digestive discomfort.
First Aid Kit
A classic first aid kit is always welcome when going away. You can purchase a travel-sized one at any pharmacy or make your own. We always include:
- Adhesive bandages (multiple sizes)
- Adhesive tape
- Alcohol-based hand sanitizer
- Antiseptic wash (like alcohol or iodine pads)
- Activated charcoal and Alka-Seltzer
- Blister pads or moleskin
- Safety pins and scissors
- Arnica ointment or pellets for bruises
Whether you’re surfing, snowboarding, or something in between, you always need to protect your skin from sun exposure. Your skin is more vulnerable to sun damage when exposed to the reflective glare from sea and snow. Not only are burns no fun, but they can also cause long-term damage that leads to melanoma. Look for natural ingredients such as zinc oxide: a mineral that creates a physical block from the sun. Additional compounds such as vitamins E or C will also give your skin a nice boost of topical antioxidants. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has a comprehensive list of safe sun screens for any and all occasions.
If you’re taking any prescription medication, please be sure to have enough for the duration of your trip, plus a couple of extra doses, just in case. Always make sure that your prescriptions are in labelled bottles and that you also have a doctor’s note if necessary, as some medications might not be universally understood or accepted in different countries.
Travel is a beautiful thing. We want you to get as much from your adventures as you can, no matter how relaxed or extreme they may be.
If you’re travelling soon and want to review how to best prepare you and your family before heading away, just call or email us at 416-944-3526 or firstname.lastname@example.org to book an appointment. Together we’ll make sure that you’re ready to tackle any adventure that lies ahead.
Here’s to your next adventure!
The Team at the Toronto Naturopathic Clinic