An expert reveals how to stay healthy while traveling.
It’s finally happened, ladies and gentlemen.
“What’s that?” I can feel you collectively asking me through the static screen of your respective laptops.
“THE HOLIDAYS ARE UPON US!” I am rhetorically shouting back to you.
“Oh, yes!” I can energetically feel you all reply back (in perfect unison, none the less).
I love, love, love the holidays, they fill me with sweeps of gratitude and joy. However, I tend to get a little sickly with all the excessive holiday travel, you know? I am not my vibrant, healthy self whilst out of my routine.
Whether I’m flying to Miami to party among the palm trees or jetting off to Colorado to ski with my love or schlepping to Connecticut to bond with the family — one thing is always a constant. And that’s the bit of fatigue-induced ennui I endure when on the road.
However, lucky for you, I am a seasoned traveler and have learned (the hard way!) how to stay healthy whilst traveling.
And here are 8 of my tried and tested tips!
Starting with chasing the ole’ zs.
1. Get As Much Sleep As Possible!
When I’m traveling I get into dark sleep habits. First off, I’m a bit of a party animal (what born and bred New Yorker isn’t?) and being out of town only exacerbates my party girl tendencies, you know? If I’m not careful I can end up fist-pumping deep into the wee hours of the morning! And because I’m in a new ~exotic~ location, I still want to get up early and explore the ~sparkly~ undiscovered territory. Between the clubbing and the long days wandering about, I end up wholly fatigued. And we all know that fatigue is what knocks our immune system into the dirt.
So what’s the solution you ask? Get in bed by midnight, wake up at 8 AM. A solid 8 hours of sleep keeps the doctor away, far more than a mere apple ever will, dahling. (Don’t sleep too much, you’ll get depressed! And depression is not the goal. A fabulous, happy vacation is the goal!).
2. Hydration Nation.
Guess what SUCKS the water out of your body more than a vacuum inhaling the dirt particles on your living room carpet? AIRPLANES, babe. The low-humidity when flying high up in the sky causes you to dry up like a wilted plant. So it’s imperative to your skin, your health, your energy and your ~glow~ that you drink fluids throughout the flight. And by fluids we don’t mean booze and coffee, we mean water. Sprinkle a little Himalayan pink salt into your water for added ~electrolytes~.
3. Move those limbs.
Don’t do what I used to do on vacation, and simply lay by the pool, stuffing your face and slinging back champagne the entire time! If you want to stay healthy you must move that body, babe! Go on long walks. Swim laps in the hotel pool. Do some crunches before bed. Pack a jump-rope and hop around! Get your circulation going, your heart pumping and a nice, detoxifying sweat in, daily.
4. Don’t eat airline food garbage! EAT FRUIT!
Do you know what’s really, really, really bad for you? Airline food. Those saran-wrap packed, sodium-laden meals that are plopped in front of you, are not organic, GMO-free, or nutritious for that matter. And when you’re traveling, you need to be extra healthy, so as to not get sick on your glorious holiday. (Getting sick on holiday, is the worst). I recommend packing apples and bananas (so hydrating and teeming with potassium!) into your carry-on and snacking on them throughout the flight. You’ll feel really ~smug~ and super ~healthy~ when you land.
5. Don’t drink yourself to death.
I love a nice cocktail! But you know what I don’t love? A head-pounding, soul-crushing HANGOVER. Hangovers render me ill and cranky, unpleasant to be around, and basically, if I’m being super-honest, ruin the entire precious day for me! It’s easy to get caught up in all the pretty, glittery cocktails whilst vacation-ing, but please go slow. Stay away from sugary mixed drinks, and stick to clean alcohol like organic agave tequila with natural soda water! You (and your liver) will thank me in the morning!
6. Load up on Vitamins.
We all know vitamins keep us healthy and we all know the stress and dehydration of planes can make us very unhealthy, so that means we need extra vitamins when traveling, to stave off illness and fatigue! A good multi-vitamin, with an added probiotic (keep that tummy happy!), some turmeric (to combat plane bloat), and some additional vitamin C and D will keep you feeling exuberant through the most harrowing of plane delays.
7. Compression socks are friends, not enemies.
My new travel hack? Compression socks, don’t laugh at me! I buy them at the airport and stretch those bad boys over my legs for the entire duration of my flight. Not only does this help prevent me from arriving in a new destination with swollen calves and feet, they help keep my circulation going when I’m stuck still in a tiny airplane seat for an ungodly amount of hours! They also prevent soreness and blood clots. Woohoo!
8. Don’t get caught up in your own neurosis.
Are you a neurotic New Yorker, like yours truly? You are? Purr. I ~love~ that for us. But you know what I don’t love? Ruining a vacation because I’ve been knocked out of my routine and am freaking out because I feel OUT OF CONTROL. This leads to added stress which almost always results in a terrible stomach ache or a sniffly nose. My new lease on travel-life? I stop myself from spiraling into the New Yorker Neurosis. I accept that I am in a new place and approach everything with an open mind. I meditate in the morning and go with the flow. I stay calm, I stay relaxed even when things don’t go ACCORDING TO PLAN. This has changed travel for me! My cortisol levels drop, my blood pressure eases, I do what you’re supposed to do on vacation, I unwind.
So tell us sickday family, what are your best travel hacks?
SICKDAY PERK: If you’re a Sickday patient and feeling sick while traveling give us a call and book a telemedicine session with your Medical Provider. Note that Sickday telemedicine services are only available to New York City Sickday patients while traveling outside of New York City.