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5 Top Tips For Staying Healthy On The Road

Joanna Hall

Without access to a favourite workout DVD or organic supermarket, it’s possible for many health-conscious people to feel forced to abandon their exercise routine and healthy diet when they travel overseas. Just because you’re hitting the road, however, you don’t have to leave all your healthy habits at home; it is possible to eat well and stay active while on holiday with a little forward planning. 

1.  Get A Checkup 

If you have an existing medical condition, or you just haven’t seen a doctor in a while, have a checkup a few weeks to a month before you head off to make sure you’re in good shape. This is especially important if you are travelling to an exotic or third-world country. Also check to see if you need any vaccinations or specific travel medications such as anti-malaria pills. You can see your GP or visit a specialist travel medicine clinic for this advice, while remembering that some vaccinations and malaria medications may need to be administered at least several months before leaving home. 

2.  Take Medications And Prescriptions With You 

Counterfeit medicines are a big problem worldwide, and getting prescription refills in some countries can be risky. The World Health Organisation has estimated that around 10 per cent of all medicines available are fakes, from over-the-counter remedies for diarrhoea to antibiotics. Make sure your prescription medicines are up-to-date and refilled before you leave home; take copies, and enough to cover you for your entire trip, plus some more for insurance in case of delays. Also consider taking a basic medical kit with you containing pain relief, antacids, and any other over-the-counter remedies you use frequently, especially if you are travelling to a third-world country or somewhere remote. 

3.  Plan Your Diet 

If you are travelling to an unfamiliar country for the first time, check out the type of food you are likely to encounter so it won’t come as a shock. If you are travelling to countries where food hygiene is a problem, avoid drinking tap water and eating fresh fruit and salads, and stick to food which is cooked. Another tip is to keep a few healthy snacks from home on hand, such as low fat crackers, so you avoid getting too hungry and resorting to unhealthy snacks. If you have any significant allergies or food intolerances, or any kind of medical condition which requires a special diet, talk to dietitian or nutritionist before you head off. Discuss where you will be visiting, where you will be staying, and the cooking facilities and types of food likely to be available. 

4.  Keep Active 

Being on holiday is no excuse for becoming a couch potato. Most hotels, resorts and cruise ships have a swimming pool and fitness centre, and there’s no better way to explore a new destination than on foot. Do some research about the place you are travelling to, see what’s available, and use your new environment to your advantage. If you are up for a lot of walking, consider investing in a good pair of shoes and top quality socks if you don’t already have some, and break the shoes in properly before you hit the streets. Another tip is to pack resistance bands, or a workout DVD for yoga or pilates, to use in your hotel room, or download an app to guide you through a workout. 

5.  Expect The Unexpected 

Although no one wants to become ill or injured while on holiday, but both can happen. Aim to travel comfortably, don’t be too adventurous if you have physical limitations, do your research so you go prepared, and make sure you are as fit and healthy as you can be before you set off. It’s also important to make sure that both you and your possessions are well insured. This will not only give you peace of mind, but if something unfortunate should happen ou will get the help you need without having to worry about who pays the bill.

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