Whether you’re off for two weeks in the sun or a gap year adventure, the last thing you want is to worry about your health while you’re away. Follow these tips for managing common holiday ailments.
Jetlag can zap energy levels, so try to avoid early morning or late-night flights that rob you of sleep. On board, keep a bottle of water handy to prevent dehydration. Healthy snacks such as nuts, dried fruit and bananas will help you resist junk food on the plane. A carbohydrate-rich meal the evening after you land may increase drowsiness and help your body clock switch time zones.
Diarrhoea is another common complaint among travellers. Research suggests that friendly bacteria can help prevent it, so consider taking a product like Travla Probiotic (£8.99, www.dtecta.co.uk ) throughout your holiday. If you do get sick, take care to stay hydrated. Seek medical advice immediately if you have a high temperature, notice blood in your stool, or if you can’t keep hydrated.
Ginger has been used for centuries to treat nausea, and it often helps with travel sickness. At the onset of nausea, try taking 10 drops of a ginger root tincture in water (Jan de Vries, £8.49 from chemists nationwide).
To clarify a point I made last week, folic acid should be taken from the moment a woman starts trying for a baby, to ensure she has adequate amounts during those crucial first four weeks of pregnancy. While the Department of Health recommends taking a folic acid supplement until the 12th week, I would suggest it is taken in a multivitamin formulated for pregnant women for the entire duration of their term.