Ban the virus and avoid getting sick on your holidays! It’s easy to boost your immune system before travelling for healthy travel and virus protection.

Catching a cold or virus when travelling is bad news any day of the week. How many times do we check out of our stressful lives for a break (especially over the school holidays), only to come down sick?

The good news is that there are ways to ban the virus avoid being one of the unlucky ones coughing, sneezing and feeling sorry for themselves becuase they are sick on holidays.

It happened to me when travelling in Fiji.  All I wanted to do was stay in bed in my room, and the flight back was a nightmare. Snorkelling on the reef was too hard, and a much-anticipated night dive just couldn’t happen. I dosed myself with so much medication, but nothing really worked.

How to not get sick on your holidays

Check out these tips from food scientist Joshua Gaudry. He says the key is to boost your immune system before travel, especially in winter but there are also things you can do if you fall ill while travelling.

“Adults and children commonly suffer from mild upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs), including colds and flu during winter. Children are more susceptible to colds, flu and mild URTIs as they don’t have a fully developed immune system. It’s estimated that children average between six to eight URTIs each year, with the majority occurring in winter,” said Joshua.

That’s a lot of sick days for working parents and could easily be precious time lost sick on holiday.

Boost your immune system in winter

Winter can be a time of consistent colds and flu for you and your family.  It is undoubtedly is one of the most challenging times to protect your family’s health from the elements so you don’t get sick on your holidays.

“The cooler temperatures are upon us. When there is a change of season, our bodies need to adjust,” says Joshua. “Those who are tired, run down, stressed and are working and/or commuting in high-density areas, are more prone to catching colds and the dreaded flu,” says Joshua.

“At lower temperatures, your body produces less antiviral immune signals to fight off viruses entering through the airways. That’s when it is time to stock up on vitamin C, fruits and vegetables and hearty gut and immune-boosting bone broths.

“Ginger is great for supporting illnesses and lowering inflammation. It helps with chronic pain, nausea and cholesterol. It is also full of excellent vitamins that support the immune system.”

“Making your family’s health is a priority before travelling, and a good way to do this is by supporting their immune system function with nutrients and herbs,” Joshua says.

Seven top ways to boost your immune system before travelling

Good nutrition can lead your defence against illness in winter and help ban the virus.  Here are some suggestions from Josh designed to boost your immune system and avoid getting sick on your holidays.

  • Fire Tonic – There is a comprehensive array of warming ingredients in fire tonic, which is really apple cider vinegar on steriods, including cayenne pepper that will light your inner fire.
  • Bone Broths are delicious and good for the gut. They also have an extensive amount of immune system benefits. Chicken broth amino acids, such as cysteine and glycine, are building blocks for important immunomodulating factors.
  • Vitamin C and Zinc are essential immunity boosters. Citrus fruits, dark leafy greens, broccoli, kiwi fruit, capsicum and bell peppers are an excellent source of vitamin C and beta carotene. Zinc can be found in pepitas, seafood, cashew nuts and mung beans. Prefer juicing? Add some blackberries, pomegranate, raspberries or guava to your next smoothie to boost your zinc intake!
  • Boost your immunity with herbs such as astragalus, Siberian ginseng and reishi mushrooms.
  • Kefir, kimchi and sauerkraut, all fermented foods, are great. They contain vitamins to help fight bacteria and inflammation. Filled with antioxidants, they are an easy way to get a lot of the good stuff into you.
  • Golden Turmeric Milk contains warming ingredients and anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Herbal teas like Pukka and English Tea Shop have a tea for just about everything

Josh’s tips for healthy travel

Simple things can make a big difference to help you avoid getting sick

  • Remember to wash your hands. You never know what nasties you can pick up.
  • Ginger chews can stimulate circulation, restore vital energy, ease nausea and headaches and soothe sore throats.
  • Keep up gut care with a shelf-stable probiotic. The technology around probiotic manufacture has shifted, and these days, it is easy to travel and maintain good digestive health.
  • Eat as healthy as you can when travelling – the key is fresh fruit and vegetables, and check they’ve been washed before consumption if eaten cold. You generally need some extra back up if travelling with children.
  • The most tried and tested was to decrease cold severity is by increasing vitamin C. Choosing a vitamin C powder or tablet with bioflavonoids (the higher, the better). Look for either rutin or hesperidin which are cofactors essential in vitamin C absorption. Usually, zinc is included as well.
  • Liquorice root supplements help with coughs and sore throats. This has an antispasmodic effect, and it can suppress involuntary coughing. Manuka honey lozenges also can help as the manuka has antibacterial properties.
  • When a cold has started to take hold, attack it head-on with supplements which provide symptomatic relief and the nutrients needed to fight off the infection.

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Disclaimer:  Information supplied by Flannerys Organic & Wholefood Market.