Thursday, February 17, 2011

Stay healthy on holiday


Holidays are supposed to be fun, exciting, relaxing times (depending on what kind of person you are) but illness can pretty much spoil them.  Even mild illness can ruin a vacation and mar the memories of what would have been a great time.  It doesn’t have to be that way though.  Here are a few things to keep in mind in a bid to have a healthy holiday:
  • If you’re going to a country where there’s a possibility of getting malaria like Cheryl Cole did when she went she apparently went to Zanzibar, make sure you take anti-malaria medication before you go on your trip.  Ask your doctor for more information about what medication to take.
  • In the same vein, if you live in an area where malaria occurs, take anti-malaria medication before you go on holiday to a country that has little occurrence of the disease.  This is so that you don’t fall ill with malaria in a country where knowledge and perhaps treatment of the disease hardly ever happens.  Take the same medication with you on holiday as sometimes malaria doesn’t rear its head for days after being bitten by the mosquito that causes the disease. 
  • Take basic medication like painkillers and medication that treats running tummy with you on holiday.  This is so that if you do get the odd headache or tummy upset, you can easily take care of it without worrying about where the nearest pharmacy is, whether you need a prescription or how to say “I have diarrhoea” in a foreign language.
  • While it’s good to be adventurous with food when on holiday, do so within reason.  If you’re not sure what’s in a particular meal, ask.  This is particularly important if you’re allergic to certain foods.  For example, I have a friend who is allergic to a particular kind of fish and will fall ill if he eats anything that has been cooked with it even if he doesn’t actually eat the fish.
  • When eating street food, choose food from stalls that have lots of customers.  If the food from a particular stand makes people ill, it’s unlikely to be popular especially with people who live in the area.
  • If you’re staying in a hotel in a new city, ask the hotel staff for their own personal favourite places to eat (outside the hotel, of course).  They will often recommend food that is delicious and cheap!
  • Above all, use common sense.  If the food looks dodgy, trust your instincts and avoid eating it.

*Please speak to your doctor before taking any medication.

                                             Nina Matthews Photography

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