How Can I Stay Healthy While Traveling in Europe?

Millions of international travelers diligently plan their adventures, ensuring they’ve packed everything they might need for all types of weather,...

Millions of international travelers diligently plan their adventures, ensuring they’ve packed everything they might need for all types of weather, researching activities and restaurants, and excitedly count down the days and even hours until it’s time to embark on their journey. What most forget to consider is safety and health, so if you’re asking the question, you may have a leg up on many other people that travel abroad.

How Can I Stay Healthy While Traveling in Europe?

Be diligent about your health before and during your trip


Getting sick while traveling can quickly ruin any vacation; in the weeks before your departure date, eat as healthy as you can such as consuming plenty of antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables, adding lots of garlic to meals, and taking supplements that can help boost your immune system such as Reishi Mushroom extract or Colloidal Silver.

Drink as much water as you can before and during your flight as flying is very dehydrating which can increase your risk of illness as well as worsen the symptoms of jet lag. This will also force you to move around the plane more to get to the restroom, keeping the blood circulating to avoid clots and other health issues. Avoid drinking alcohol and caffeine as both contribute to dehydration and will worsen jet lag.

Wash your hands frequently


Be sure to wash your hands often with warm water and soap, keeping your nails clean as well. Avoid touching your face, especially the eyes, nose and mouth.  You may want to bring a small bottle of hand sanitizer for those times when running water is not available. Be sure that all of the surfaces you touch frequently, like your laptop, smartphone or iPod, are kept as clean as possible as they can be a breeding ground for germs and viruses.

Get plenty of rest


This can be difficult when faced with a major time change, such as what you’ll experience traveling from the U.S. to Europe. If possible, when you arrive you should check into your hotel or other accommodation and take a short one to two hour nap. Don’t sleep for any longer than that or you’ll defeat the purpose. That night, go to bed at a normal bedtime; if you have trouble sleeping, consider taking a supplement like melatonin which will help your body to adjust to sleeping in a different time zone.

Bring a travel health kit


Having a travel health kit that includes remedies for minor illnesses such as a cold or the flu can help you to be prepared. Include extra doses of your regular medications and things like ibuprofen, bandages, antiseptic and tweezers. Of course, these items are available in most major cities and even small towns across Europe, but it can be nice to have them handy when in an unfamiliar place.

If you take prescription medications, be sure to bring a note from your doctor that justifies them in case you run into any problems getting through security or customs.

Road safety


Auto accidents are a far bigger threat to your health and safety than terrorists or natural disasters, but this holds true in America as well. Driving is only really a problem for those who make it one. Get to know the road rules in the country, or countries, you’ll be driving in before you go. The same simple set of road symbols are used throughout Europe with many major rest stops offering inexpensive maps or even free local driving almanacs that explain them.

Always drive defensively and focus on the road rather than your map or something else.

More Europe Tips:

Europe – Disabled Travel Advice

European Health Tips: Immunizations

Europe Safety Tips: Avoiding Scammers and Thieves

 Using Credit Cards in Europe


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