Traveling can wear you down whether you are young, old, fit or not. Constant movement and new places can take a toll on your health. From different foods and new climates to foreign diseases and the stress of being in a new place, health while traveling can decline quickly if you aren't careful. If you want to enjoy your trip to the best of your ability, here are some top tips for staying healthy while traveling.
Consider Travel Health Insurance
While it's certainly not necessary, travel healthy insurance can be both a lifesaver and preserver of your wallet. In many countries, seeing a doctor for a basic problem is easy to do for little or no cost but for larger problems like motorbike crashes in Vietnam, coming down with Dengue Fever in Indonesia or spraining your ankle while trekking in Scotland, health insurance can be extremely helpful. Many health packages include special insurance for adventure travel, air-lifting out of a country, paying for a friend or relative to come stay with you in the hospital and bringing your body back to your home country in the hopefully unlikely event that you lose your life while abroad. There are plenty of insurance options out there for travel but World Nomads happens to be a popular one.
It's easy to fall into that "vacation mode" while traveling, letting exercise fall to the wayside as you relax. This is one of the biggest mistakes a traveler can make; thinking that they don't have to or can't make time for exercise on the road. I once saw a girl in my hostel wake up and do a series of crunches and leg lifts right from her bed, helping me to realize that exercise can really be fit in, no excuses. Find an area to jog, a park to walk through or plan to stay at a hotel with a gym. Even if you just do a few push-ups and squats when you wake up in the morning, it certainly helps.
Incorporate Active Activities
There are ways to incorporate exercise into your travels without feeling like you are taking time away from your trip. Instead of sticking to museums, pub crawls and cafes, get out there and explore in an active way. Try hiking in national parks, touring the city by bicycle, kayaking around the stunning lakes or taking a yoga class in the park. See the sites while still keeping your body moving.
Keep Home Health Supplies on Hand
There is plenty of advice floating around out there telling travelers to pack as little as possible and to think with a minimalistic frame of mind. However, when it comes to health, the more prepared the better. Bring health and medical supplies like a thermometer to check on fevers, alcohol and gauze in case of cuts and infections and pain meds to help you get through sore muscles from hiking, hangovers or headaches from trying to figure out complicated subway systems in new places. If you are traveling with more specific or drastic health issues, you may want to consider bringing along some of the top medical supplies out there like blood pressure monitors, foot supports for all of the walking you may have to do and compression stockings for sitting on long flights.
It's a common mistake but an easy one to fix. Staying hydrated is a must if you want to feel your best while traveling. Carry a reusable water bottle or Camel Bak with you while sightseeing so that you don't have any reasons not to drink water. Take frequent pit stops throughout the day to rest up and remind yourself to drink.