How to Avoid Travelers Diarrhea

Jul 30, 2015

Travelling abroad can be an exciting prospect but not if you have an upset stomach. Unfortunately, travelers diarrhea, as it is otherwise known, is one of the most common complaints amongst travelers. It keeps people locked away in hotel rooms while their holidays waste away. It is best to first understand what cause travelers diarrhea before we talk about how to prevent it.

Jet lag is a common reason for an upset stomach. When you go across time zones, your circadian rhythm, the one that tells your body what it should do, is interrupted. As a result, bodily functions are thrown out of whack and you may end up with diarrhea. It can also go opposite and you could end up constipated. The change in routine also doesnt help. If you are used to working every day and suddenly your body is on vacation it can cause diarrhea. The most common reason, however, is parasites. Travelers ingest food or water that has parasites that lead to diarrhea.

So how do you prevent it?

There are several things you should do before and during the trip.

Give up fatty foods and highly processed foods at least two weeks before your trip. They weaken your immune system and leave you prone to infection. Instead, eat an organic diet that has all food groups. You should also start taking a good probiotic so that you can build your bodys immunity to diarrhea. Drink lots of yoghurt as it contains good bacteria s well.

During the trip, make sure that you rest enough especially the first 24 hours after you arrive. This is important because it gives your body to adjust to the new time zone. Take it easy in your room or by the pool. Schedule any travel for later.

There are certain foods that are more likely to give you diarrhea than others. Basically, if it isnt cooked and you are not preparing it yourself it has the potential to make you ill. Avoid salads and fruits. Be careful about that lemon wedge in your drink. Avoid ice many times it is made out of unclean water, and vending machines can also be breeding places for bugs. What if you are staying in a top hotel? You should still be careful especially about salad bars because there are so many people hovering over them. You should avoid foods that are sold in streets and markets if you want to stay safe.

Drink bottled water as much as possible. If you will be swimming it is advisable to be careful not to swallow water.

Lastly, if you do get sick, it is important that you see a doctor depending on how sick you feel. If you arent too badly off you can take an over-the-counter medication for stopping diarrhea they are available in most places. In addition to that, you should stay hydrated so that you can maintain the right levels of electrolytes. If you are holidaying in a coconut-rich zone you should take a glass or two every few hours until you feel better.