Travel season is fun but my goodness is it GERMY. Without fail, I get sick either before, during, or after our trip and unfortunately one [or all] of the girls isn’t too far behind.
Luckily, we’ve gotten a better handle on managing our health while traveling. By beefing up our supplements, using sanitizer religiously, and keeping our pre-travel diet pretty clean, we’ve managed almost a clean bill of health.
Here are our must have products and must do tips for keeping the family healthy before, during and after your trip!
THINGS TO DO
1. STAY HYDRATED
No, sodas and Capri Suns don’t count. Drink water. Lots of it. And make sure the kiddos do too! In general, our bodies need and utilize a lot of water but it is even more critical when we are traveling. Carry an empty Thermos with you when you travel and refill it often while you’re moving around. Your body will thank you!
These are the ones we use for the girls. They are durable [ever seen a kid throw a cup just because?], don’t leak, and keep their water cool for around 10-12 hours. One of our girls likes her water super cold, one likes it room temperature but not warm, and the other one doesn’t care. This cup works for all three AND as a bonus they make it in all their favorite colors.
2. GET SOME SLEEP
This can sometimes be easier said than done but at least try to get lots of rest before, during, and after your trip. Sleep is how your body recovers and recharges. You wouldn’t leave for a trip with your phone battery half charged, would you? Same thing applies with your body. More rest also reduces everyone’s risk of being cranky which is critical for kids and parents alike.
3. WORK OUT / WALK WHEN YOU CAN
If you are an avid worker-outer’er, then try to stick to your workout routine during a long trip. It keeps your metabolism moving and is good for your overall health.
If you’re like me and slacking just a little [or your trip just doesn’t accommodate it], then put those good old feet to use. Yes, the kids too! Picked out a restaurant about a mile away? Walk instead of catching a cab. Breakfast buffet at the hotel starts at 9? Wake up at 7 and take a walk around the block or the hotel property. Get those steps in when you can and it will add up.
4. CUT COFFEE, SUGAR, & ALCOHOL
I don’t know about you guys but me minus coffee = no bueno whether I’m on vacation or not. But it is worth mentioning that reducing your coffee, sugar, and alcohol intake especially during a trip is beneficial. Coffee, in all its delicious glory, is dehydrating and counteractive to the hydration we are trying to achieve from tip #1. Its acidity can also increase the amount of bile in your stomach which can mess with the digestion of your food, cause heartburn, acid reflux, and other not so fun sounding things. So if you can stomach it [get it — stomach it??], try to reduce or eliminate coffee before and during your trip.
Note: if you are a stone cold coffee drinker that throws back double shot espressos 5 times a day, please do not quit coffee cold turkey right before your trip. You’ll probably end up grumpy and spazzing out on your family saying “The Spring Break Family made me do this!” We don’t want that. Just wean yourself off a little.
Sugar and alcohol have similar effects. Sugar causes insulin spikes and crashes which can ultimately lead to fatigue, weakness, irritability, and more. Depending on your sugar sensitivity, too much of it can also cause headaches, stomach pain, and jittery-ness [or what I call “the shakes”].
Alcohol, which is essentially fermented sugar, can have the same effects. Not to mention the hangovers. It can also disrupt your sleep which we said in tip #2 was important.
THINGS TO BUY
1. KOR SHOTS
These are the greatest things since sliced bread. Yes, I love these things that much. Before giving Kor Shots a try, I’d never heard of wellness shots. They are essentially concentrated, cold pressed doses of “the good stuff” that helps address certain needs. They have a variety of mixes including Detox, Vitality, and Gut Check but my favorites are the Potent-C and Wellness shots.
Potent-C contains Sea Buckthorn. Call me boring but I’d never heard of it until I discovered Kor but apparently it is a magical little fruit. It is the only berry in the world that contains all the omegas [3, 6, 7, and 9] and contains 12 times more Vitamin C than an orange. The shot also contains pineapple juice, orange juice, lemon juice, camu camu powder, and baobab powder all of which provide their own health benefits.
While the Potent-C shot is sweet, the Wellness shot is a spicy kick in the junk. Okay, not literally but it is pretty zingy. It contains coconut water, lemon juice, ginger juice, and….. wait for it…… cayenne pepper. Yeah, you read that right. You drink pepper. BUT it is worth it, I promise!
Despite its ingredients, the combination goes down smooth and the benefits are outstanding. Ginger is well known for its anti-inflammatory properties which can help with sore throat and inflammation of the mucous membranes. Some even say it has rhinovirus killing properties.
I used the combination of these two to get over a cold that developed right before our Spring Break trip. Even my doctor remarked at how well I recovered. Highly recommend!
Please note, I am not a medical professional nor do I want to be. Please consult with your doctor regarding what is safe for you and especially your kiddos. K? K!
Kor Shots, https://www.korshots.com/
2. YOGI IMMUNE SUPPORT TEA
This caffeine free tea is designed to help support your body’s immune functions with natural goodness. Its ingredients of elderberry, echinacea, peppermint, and more all work together to provide a delicious boost to your body’s natural defense system.
It comes in two flavors: Tulsi Spiced Berry and Echinacea. All of us, including the girls, have had this and we absolutely LOVE it.
This one is a favorite for my kiddos because it is sweet and actually tastes good. It is a favorite for me because it is a guaranteed way for them to get a healthy dose of Vitamin C. Its powder form also allows me to customize how much they receive. Plus, it is easy to pack.
I usually give them half a packet every morning starting about two weeks before our trip and every day during our trip. We are able to traipse through airports, train stations, public transportation, parks, and more and miraculously return home without any illnesses. I give all credit to Emergen-C.
Please note [again], I am not a medical professional nor do I want to be. Please consult with your doctor regarding what is safe for you and especially your kiddos.
4. A QUALITY PROBIOTIC
Did you know a large portion of your immune system lives in your gut? Studies have shown that folks that take a probiotic daily have a smaller chance of developing colds or gastrointestinal issues. The bacteria in these bad boys feed and strengthen the good bacteria in your digestive system. By doing so, your body is better able to process all the ick that can come through your food.
As a bonus, probiotics can also help keep you regular which is a godsend when eating on vacation — especially if you’re like us and kinda let your “food freedom” flag run high!
You can, of course, get a healthy dosing of probiotics by eating things like yogurt or kefir but this lactose intolerant momma prefers to just take it in pill or gummy form. If you get it in pill form, be sure to get it from a speciality shop that keeps them refrigerated as heat can kill the bacteria.
Many companies make gummy kid-friendly probiotics but these are our favorite:
Things to Have
This one is pretty self explanatory. I always carry hand sanitizer when we travel. The girls also have a container of it on their backpacks. The cutesy sanitizer holders they have at Bath and Body Works make it easy for them to want to use it regularly.
We aren’t picky about the brand — although we purchase Purell the most often. Just be sure to check the active ingredients. It should be comprised of ethyl, ethanol, or isopropanol and have a concentration between 60 and 95%.
2. WET ONES WET WIPES
My family might or might not joke about how much I love these things. If there’s a scale of love from 1 to 10 then I’m probably at a 10.5 for these. If they had a cheerleading squad, I’d ask to be team captain. If I could do cartwheels, I’d do them down the aisle at Target where I purchase these. If I had another child, I’d name her WetWipea.
OK, maybe the number is more like a 20.
They are super portable, super moist, and get the job done. They are hypoallergenic, won’t dry your skin out like traditional hand sanitizer, and kill 99.99% of germs and bacteria. They have a ton of uses — in fact, I pack them in our kids’ lunch kits every day so that they clean their hands before eating. But in this scenario, I slide a few in my purse [and a few more in my backpack, and a ton more in my suitcase] so that they are on hand when needed.
Want to rub the ancient rock at the Colosseum that everyone and their momma has touched before you? Sure, no problem. Want to stand in the sun eating gelato from a cone and have it run all down your arms so you can lick it off and giggle? You got it, dude. Accidentally land in mud while doing a kiddie handstand out in front of the Eiffel Tower? No sweat, sweetheart. Rinky dink bathroom is out of soap? Yuck, but no worries!
These dang wipes cover them all!
3. MEDICINE BAG
We never travel anywhere without my handy dandy medicine bag! Our family is rampant with allergies, sinus issues, asthma, and God knows what else so it is helpful to have everything we need close by. Plus, have you ever tried to purchase a nasal decongestant for a kid in an Italian farmacia with no recognizable brands and everything written in Italian from a pharmacist that doesn’t speak much English and eventually just asks you to leave? It’s awful! Much easier to just take what you need with you.
Obviously, your list should be customized to fit your needs but we always have:
For the kids —
- A daily multivitamin gummy
- Zrytec allergy medicine [in dissolvable tab form because it is easier to travel with]
- Happy Tummy probiotic gummy
- Kids Nasalcort nasal spray
- ProAir inhaler
- Fridababy NoseFrida Nasal Aspirator
- Children’s Ibuprofen
- Kid Pepto Bismol tablets
- Nasal Saline Spray
For the adults —
- A daily multivitamin gummy
- Zrytec allergy medicine [in pill form]
- Acid reducer
- Alka Seltzer cold
- Allergy eye drops
These items are dumped in a gallon sized Ziploc bag and thrown in one of our suitcases. It can take a while to pack because I tailor it to our destination but it has always come in handy so is well worth it!
Hope these tips help keep you in your family in optimal health while traveling! If you have any tips, please include in the comments below!