As the weather is getting warmer, we are out and about more often. And whether you’re catching planes, trains, or cars for work or fun, your chances of getting sick while traveling are very likely. Studies vary, but they show that you are anywhere from 20% to 113% more likely to catch a cold while traveling.
Why do we get sick when we travel? We’re exposed to other people’s germs, we’re stressed, and our sleep and eating schedules are thrown out of whack. Whether you’re traveling solo or you’ve got the whole family in tow, here are some important steps to staying healthy while traveling.
Five Ways to Avoid Getting Sick While Traveling
A lot of these tips are especially important for people flying, but remember that they’re also just generally good health practices. Here are some manageable steps to staying healthy while on the go this spring, summer, and all year round.
1. Sanitize Everything
Keep a to-go size hand sanitizer and small packet of wet wipes in your backpack or purse. If you’re on a plane, be sure to wipe down the tray table in front of you and wash your hands as much as possible when in and out of airports or rest stops. Don’t fixate on your palms only, be sure to scrub your fingers well, too!
2. Stay Hydrated
You’d be shocked to hear that 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated. When we don’t get enough water, our body suffers in just about every way.
Keep a refillable water bottle with you, one in your car, your office, your bag, etc. Download apps that remind you to drink water or that track your water intake. If you’re going to be flying, you should be very conscientious of upping your water intake at least a day or two before stepping in the airport and throughout your flight.
3. Keep a Schedule
I’m not saying you can’t sleep in on vacay, but if you have a pretty routine schedule back home, try to stick as closely to it as possible on vacation. This can make the transition easier on your body and lower stress. If anything, try to keep sleep, meals, and exercise routines the same while traveling.
4. Boost Your Immune System
The week prior to traveling, you should really commit to a healthy diet, even if you generally eat pretty well. Try to consume mostly dark leafy greens (like kale), and lots of brightly colored fruits rather than opting for fast food, even as you frantically prepare for your trip.
Additionally, seek out healthier options in the airport, gas stations, and airplane whenever possible. Typically, the vegetarian options on in-flight meals are much better for your body.
This is important for anyone who will be sitting in a car or a plane for long periods of time. Sitting too much isn’t great for our bodies, but it can be hard to get in some quality movements while in a confined space.
If you’re staying properly hydrated, you’ll likely visit the bathroom a few times, giving you ample opportunity to move around.
Managing hectic schedules, getting through flights, long drives, or even both, and feeling well enough to enjoy vacation can be difficult. However, if you stick with the five tips above, you’ll find that your mind and body will be in the right place.
For more tips on mind and body wellness in today’s world, see this helpful blog post!
If you’re about to embark on a trip or just getting back from one, let’s touch base to make sure you’re in good shape! Schedule your consultation or call my office with any questions here!