Nobody ever wants to get sick while they’re traveling. Nothing ruins a vacation more than this. Nonetheless, when we travel, our schedules get thrown off, our diets alter, usually for the worse, and we may not get enough sleep. However, there are still several things we can do to be healthy while traveling. And, while I am not a doctor and this is not medical advice, I do like to share what has worked for me. Here are nine essential items for staying healthy while traveling.
9 Essential Items for Staying Healthy While Traveling
1. A Travel Health Kit
Having a basic travel health kit is vital regardless of the length of the journey or the destination.
A small health kit should include essential over-the-counter medications, first-aid supplies, prescription medications, and any necessary medical items. I keep mine full of band aids, ibuprofen, and a couple packets of Emergen-C for immune support regardless of where I’m traveling. Colds, cuts, and blisters happen, so it’s always good to be prepared.
2. Reusable Water Bottle & Purification Method
You should always ensure that you have access to healthy drinking water. Investing in a reusable water container and purifying process allows you to drink water on the go with confidence.
Brands like LifeStraw allow you to effortlessly filter water on the fly. Fill up your bottle at an airport bathroom, a water fountain, or a tap just about anywhere while traveling. A stainless steel bottle is my favorite since it keeps water cool and fresh for much longer than a plastic bottle.
If you don’t have a water bottle with a filter, you can always tuck some water purification tablets, like Aquatabs, into your first aid kit for emergencies.
3. Disinfecting Wipes & Hand Sanitizer
Disinfecting wipes are my go-to on the road. They’re great for wiping down remote controls in hotel rooms, door knobs, and tray tables on airplanes or any questionable surface you may encounter on the road.
As for hand sanitizer, that’s an individual preference. Hand sanitizer can come in handy in a pinch, but it can also be very drying depending on how much alcohol is in it. Likewise, hand sanitizers can contain an array of chemicals and if exposed to heat may even become flammable.
However, a purse-sized container is a great item to have when you’re not able to wash your hands immediately. There are also many brands that make organic or all natural hand sanitizers should you wish to find one.
4. Healthy Snacks
You’ll want to keep your energy levels up while you’re on the road so having a selection of healthy snacks is always a great idea. However, you want to avoid snacks loaded with sugar or empty calories.
Make your snack choices wise decisions, nuts, raisins, protein bars, fruit, and the like will serve you far better in the long run. You’ll also have the energy necessary to travel on.
They say, an apple a day keeps the doctor away. But what if you aren’t where you can get to an apple?
Fortifying your immune system the natural way is preferable, but not always possible. I bring my vitamins along with me when I’m traveling since I know a strong immune system can help me avoid catching colds and other not so fun maladies.
There are multiple travel accessories designed for carrying medications. You can either turn one of those into a vitamin carrier or simply include your vitamins with your other tablets.
Not sure what vitamins you need? There is plenty of information on line (helpful article) and with a little research, you’ll be on your way to boosting your immune system.
6. Sunscreen and Sun Protection
Sun protection is necessary year round. Not exactly breaking news. However, not all sunscreens are equal.
As someone who is vigilant about finding the right sunscreen with the right ingredients, I’ve done a great deal of research. I was shocked to learn there are many sunscreens that contain some pretty scary ingredients. Several recognizable brands have harmful chemicals that can penetrate the skin and enter the blood stream. Yikes! (helpful article)
There are two types of sunscreens, chemical or mineral. Both types of sunscreen provide SPF protection. Finding what works best for you is an individual endeavor.
I’m more of a “natural” gal, so after a great deal of research, I opt for natural mineral sunscreens. I also rely heavily on hats to protect my face from harmful rays. Besides, as Farmer Ted says in the movie Sixteen Candles, “you know, a girl with a hat is just so… vogue.”
7. Insect Repellent
If you’re traveling to a destination with insect-borne diseases or if you’re simply visiting an outdoor location during the warmer months of the year, insect repellent is crucial for avoiding bug bites.
Again, I aim for a product that has the most natural ingredients that actually work. There are numerous insect repellents that come in travel size bottles, but you can also find several that come in convenient wipes that make packing them easy and worry free since they won’t spill in your bag.
8. Travel-friendly Exercise Equipment
A huge part of staying healthy while traveling includes getting exercise. Most hotels have a workout room, but not many of us actually pay that room a visit. That’s where having some simple basic exercise equipment with us can force us to do some toning and stretching in the room.
I’ve found that exercise bands are perfect for taking on the road. They take no space in a bag and can be used for a variety of exercises. Meaning, I don’t have to forsake my workouts simply because I’m away from home.
9. Travel Insurance
Not exactly an item for staying healthy, but travel insurance is important to have. Especially if you come down with something while you’re traveling out of your network or country.
Comprehensive, medical, evacuation, there is an array of choices so before leaving for that big vacation, it’s always wise to make sure you’re covered. Don’t wait until you’re in a jam to learn there is a gap in your coverage. I’m an affiliate for Insure My Trip. They scour the internet and find the best policies for your specific travel insurance requirements. Whether you want health insurance or simply to insure the investment of your trip, it’s a great resource for finding the right coverage for your needs.
Prioritize Making Healthy Choices While Traveling
Staying healthy while on the road involves a combination of best practices like getting enough sleep, making good dietary decisions, drinking plenty of water, and exercising when possible.
It’s also important to prioritize healthy choices while on the road. I like to include activities that incorporate exercise into the itinerary such as hiking, biking, or walking. That way I avoid being completely sedentary and it is a great way to work off any extra calories I may be consuming.
By focusing on combining preparedness with maintaining a healthy lifestyle, you’ll be on the road to staying healthy while you’re away from home. Happy Travels!
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