Healthy Air Travel Tips
Traveling for work or pleasure can be a lot of fun, but it can also take a toll on your body. From unhealthy snacks in the airport and dehydration to illnesses from other passengers and lack of sleep, there’s a variety of reasons to be cautious when traveling. We’ve got all the best tips for you so you won’t have to suffer though a travel related illness.
- Boost your immune system: To avoid being sidelined by a cold or flu, take immune boosting supplements such as Emergen-C or Airborne. Most of these supplements are high in vitamin-c, so it helps keep your immune system on the defensive against all the bugs lurking on airplanes and in airports. Begin taking them a day or two before your trip. It is a good idea to pack a few tablets or packets in your carry-on too, during your flight you can mix them with water for an added boost and take them for a day or two when you arrive at your destination.
- Pack sanitizing wipes and hand sanitizer: A lot of surfaces on airplanes and airports are touched by dozens of people per day, each of them leaving little & easy to pick-up germs. A good idea is to bring sanitizing wipes so you can clean off your seat-back tray and seatbelt buckles before you use them. If your plane had a quick turn-around, it is likely that a majority of the surfaces have not been thoroughly wiped down (if wiped down at all), so pack your own cleaning aids so you won’t have to worry about picking up everyone else’s germs.
- Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate: The cabin of an airplane is extremely dry, almost desert-like, so it is important to keep yourself hydrated. It is a good idea to pack an empty water bottle in your carry-on, you can fill it at a water bottle fill station or fountain when as soon as you are through security. Once on board, you can have a flight attendant fill your water bottle if you run out. If you want to get a little more from your water, grab a bottle or two of coconut water which has electrolytes to keep you hydrated.
- Eat smarter: A lot of airlines give out little packets of pretzels, peanuts, and chips. All of these have one thing in common, salt. Salt causes you to retain water, making you bloated. Pack your own healthy snacks, like unsalted nuts or vegetable sticks. Before your flight, eat a light and balanced meal with as many fresh, raw foods as possible to get a good helping of fiber.
- Avoid alcohol & caffeine: Both alcohol and caffeine dehydrate us, which will make you more susceptible to catching an illness during your flight. Choose water instead of alcohol, and if you must have coffee, drink it only when you are trying to stay awake and not multiple times throughout your flight.
- Walk around: To avoid painful swelling and stiffness, walk around as much as possible before your flight. Instead of sitting at the gate waiting for your flight, do a few laps around the terminal. Once you are one-board (and the seatbelt sign is off), walk up and down the aisle to loosen your leg muscles and avoid blood clots from forming. You can even add in some walking lunges to get a little fitness out of your flight.
- Pack smart: If you are traveling with a carry-on, make sure you meet all of the TSA regulations for what you can and cannot bring on board. Pack any medications you may need during your flight or trip in your carry-on so you can access them easily and will not have to worry about what-ifs. You will get through security much easier and with less stress if you follow the rules laid out by the TSA, plus you will not have to part with items you accidentally packed because you didn’t know the rules.
A big part of staying healthy when you travel is planning. If you take care of yourself before, during and after your flight, you will be much more likely to stay healthy and enjoy your trip.