Today, as I prepare to leave for a lovely trip to visit my family in England, and then off to Amsterdam for a few days, I thought I’d share my strategies for healthy travel! I’m not a “germophobic” by any means, but airline travel does require some extra care. Plus, you can’t always control who you are sitting next to, and if it’s a long flight….well, you’ve got to take care of yourself! As someone with a Sub Class Immune Deficiency, I always do a little extra, but these basic steps can ensure a much more pleasurable experience when you arrive at your final destination.
- Sleep Well the Night Before
Getting enough rest the night before as well as the days leading up to a trip can make a big difference. Seven to eight hours (nine if you have an autoimmune challenge) is ideal. Your body performs at its best when it’s had enough rest. This way, you can minimize your chances of catching a virus or bacterial infection since your immune system is at its peak.
- Stretch Before and During Your Flight
Get your blood moving! This is crucial if you are taking a longer flight, and need to be mindful of circulation. You’ll also feel better when your muscles are not tight and stiff. While in your seat, there are a few exercises you can do. A few easy ones include pointing your toes as you alternate with your heel. As you do this, stretch your lower calf as much as you can. Another is to raise your legs to your chest (or as high as you can), and alternate each leg. Do this once every 15 minutes and be sure to get up and walk on the plane. If you are overweight, have a blood clotting problem (like Factor V Leiden, a genetic predisposition to blood clots), or circulation issue, support stockings are a big help! Your physician can recommend the compression strength that’s right for you. Wearing these will also help to prevent deep vein thrombosis (DVT) which can be life threatening. Be aware, and take it seriously!
- Drink PLENTY of Water
Dehydration is an issue even without flying, so when preparing for your trip, start to drink even MORE water than normal. Ideally, drink half your bodyweight in ounces (not more than 100oz., and if you have a heart or kidney condition, your doctor will give you guidelines for this). The air on planes is incredibly stagnant and due to cabin pressure, you’ll notice how much drier you feel, so this is very important. And, if you have alcohol in flight, it will dry you our even more! Bring a saline nasal spray to help keep your airways moist—keeps the bugs out!
- Take Olive Leaf Extract or Oil Of Oregano
Ahhh…my favorites! These are both “power-houses” for anti-bacterial and anti-viral support. I have taken these for years and always have been impressed with their anti-microbial power. If you’ve been under the weather prior to flight, taking either oil of oregano or olive leaf extract will help to boost your immunity. Or, if you are just concerned about catching something on the flight, take one dose prior to the flight. Note, these both act as diuretics, so you will urinate more so be sure to drink more water. My favorite brand of Oil of Oregano is Blue Bonnet or Solary (look for at least 18% Oleuropein). And Oreganol’s P73 is my go-to for Oil of Oregano. Just one drop in water or under the tongue will do. It’s strong stuff, but it works!!#
- Try Essential Oils
Essential oils are fabulous for travel support, plus they are small enough to take in your carry-on bag! Essential oils may seem like a new fad, but they have actually been around for thousands of years and are highly effective. Plant based, they have the amazing healing properties that plants themselves use to protect themselves against predators. And, they are becoming more and more widely used in the medical world, including hospitals in many countries! I recommend doTERRA OnGuardⓇ which helps to support your immune system while traveling. For more info, contact Jennifer Tremblay, The Essential Oil Lady!
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