How to Prevent Digestive Problems While Traveling

It can be tempting to throw caution to the wind and indulge in all sorts of tasty treats full of fat, dairy, and other tough-on-stomach ingredients. However, when you’re traveling, you should always use caution to avoid ruining your trip with unpleasant digestive issues. To help you prevent digestive issues, here are a few common digestive problems and how to prevent them when you’re traveling.

Diarrhea

Caused by eating food or drinking water that contains bacteria, diarrhea is a common problem among travelers. To keep it away and prevent it while on vacation, follow these tips.

  1. Make sure that any meat you consume is cooked thoroughly. Also ensure that it is hot and steaming when served to you, as this means that it is fresh and less likely to contain the bacteria that builds up when food goes cold.
  2. Drink bottled water and don’t add ice to it, unless the ice has been made with safe, distilled, water.
  3. Don’t eat food or drinks that are unpasteurized.
  4. If you’re suffering from diarrhea, avoid consuming greasy foods and foods that are high in fiber.
  5. Skip the caffeine- even if it means a slow start each morning.

Constipation

It’s no fun to be in the bathroom due to diarrhea, but its no more fun being unable to have a bowel movement, either. Constipation can cause stomach ache, discomfort, and gas. To prevent it, here are a few tips.

  1. Stay hydrated. Water is the best thing for keeping a person regular as it keeps things moving and working properly- including the bowels.
  2. Avoid medications and mineral supplements that can trigger a case of constipation. Some minerals like iron and calcium can cause build-up, so be careful.
  3. Eat fiber. Foods that are high in fiber such as fruits and vegetables are perfect for keeping you regular.

Heartburn

Heartburn is another digestive issue that many travelers face. Heartburn can be managed, however, with the tips below.

  1. Eat small meals. When digestion is an issue and heartburn the symptom, it’s a good idea to eat small meals during the day instead of a large one at dinner.
  2. Stay upright for as long as you can after eating. Laying down after a meal increases the chances of heartburn.
  3. Don’t drink alcohol. Alcohol can cause unbearable cases of heartburn and ruin your evening in a matter of seconds.

Gas and bloating.

Gas and bloating, although not harmful, are uncomfortable and often times, inconvenient. They are a result of the intake of extra air into the stomach, and can be associated with certain foods. To avoid gas and bloating, here are a few tips.

  1. Avoid foods such as beans and asparagus, as these foods are known to cause gas.
  2. Eat slowly. The faster we eat, the more air we take in, increasing our chances of getting gas.
  3. Avoid carbonated drinks such as soda and beer- these drinks contain carbon dioxide, which causes gas and bloating
  4. If you come down with gas or bloating, partake in light exercise such as squats and bending to pick things up off of the ground.

Stay Fit While On Vacation

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With all the tasty food, exciting liquor, and ways to relax while on vacation, it’s no wonder that staying fit takes a backseat for the duration of most vacations. It is, however, important and should not be forgotten. Luckily, there are a few simple ways to stay active and fit while away from home.

Bring lightweight workout equipment.

When packing your bags, consider packing some lightweight, easy to carry workout equipment.  Equipment such as jump ropes and resistance bands are easy to carry and take up very little space in a suitcase or carry on, and both can be used in a hotel room without causing a disturbance.

Follow the two day rule.

The two day rule is a great way to make exercise a priority. This rule requires a strict workout structure- no more than two days should go by without a workout of some sort, whether it be a 3 mile jog or a cardio session at the local fitness center. 

Enroll in a fitness class.

If you’re staying in or near a city, consider enrolling in a fitness class or two. Not only will the class keep you in shape, but it could also prove to be a lot of fun as many locations offer their own unique fitness classes. Some that come to mind are classes that include yoga with goats, aerial fitness, and jump rope.

Opt to walk.

Although taking a tour of the land around you from the comfort of a bus or train sounds tempting, it can be detrimental to your physical fitness. Instead of booking a tour bus, opt to see the sights on foot. Doing so will get you up and moving, keep your blood flowing, and allow you to thoroughly take in the scenery.

Plan for a food emergency.

It’s not uncommon to lose track of time and miss a meal. This, although harmless at the time, can catch up with you later in the firm of a large, heavy meal full of carbs and unhealthy fat. To be prepared for a food disaster, keep your backpack or travel pack full of healthy snacks such as protein bars and dried fruit.

Avoid skipping meals.

As mentioned above, skipping a meal may seem harmless during the moment. It can, however, be harmful later on. Skipping meals can make you feel unwell, and can also lead to binge eating and overeating, both of which include the consumption of excess calories and unhealthy fats. 

Stay hydrated.

Water, or lack of it, is linked to hunger. If you’re dehydrated while on vacation, your stomach can be tricked into thinking that you’re hungry when in fact you’re just not drinking enough fluids. As a rule of thumb, always try to drink as much as possible to avoid this common problem. Keep in mind, as well, that alcohol actually dehydrates the body so it shouldn’t be considered a fluid in this case. If you’re going to drink alcohol, be sure to drink water alongside it.