There’s something special about airports: the sense of adventure, the anticipation of getting together with friends and family..
…and the risk of falling ill because there’s so many people around.
Yep, with the scores of travelers going back and forth, it’s a prime place for illnesses to spread. And if your flight is delayed or you’ve run into some inevitable problem trying to get to your destination, your body falls under a ton of stress, meaning your immune system is low and not ready to guard against germs.
We want to give you 7 must-know ways to keep yourself healthy before embarking on a flight! Because we know journeys on an airplane can’t all be as joyous and feel-good as this:
So before you step foot on that airplane, check out these 7 tips to keep you in top shape to travel:
Stay hydrated. You may not be able to bring full water bottles through security, but you can bring empty ones. Airplane cabins can be notoriously dry due to the high pressure, and the refreshments cart may not come around as often as you’d like. While you’re in the terminal fill up your bottle at the fountain, and while you’re on the flight feel free to ask a flight attendant for a refill.
Use the restroom right before you board. Although airplane crews do try to keep onboard bathrooms as clean as possible, remember you’re sharing this bathroom with 100+ other people on board. If you do have to use the restroom, close the lid before flushing, since flushing sprays water and easily spreads germs.
Keep your eyes from drying out. Again, because of the pressurized air, the lack of humidity in the air will dry out your eyes. You might be tempted to rub them, but don’t! Rubbing your eyes is another surefire way to contract the cold and flu (they can travel through the tear ducts in your eyes). Instead of contacts, wear glasses, and if you do need to wear contacts try not to sleep in them.
Keep warm with a blanket or several layers. Even though the economy is recovering, money is still tight, and airlines are trying to cut costs as much as they can. So, when you request a blanket, that could be the same blanket dozens of other people have used before you… and it’s not like they have time to wash it in between flights.
Eat a good meal right before boarding. Meals served in the airplane aren’t known for being the finest cuisine, but they may not be the most healthy either. Instead, grab a bite to eat from a restaurant in the terminal or take it to go with you on the flight.
Pass on the alcohol. Alcohol makes you more dehydrated and lowers your immune system, so in a dry airplane cabin, it’s not the ideal situation to be in. If you’re more inclined to have a drink or two to sleep better during the flight, try some more natural alternatives, like taking melatonin or drinking some relaxing tea (like chamomile).
Load up on some yogurt before you fly. The helpful probiotic bacteria contained in yogurt are known to boost your immune system and strengthen your digestive system. Yogurt can also come in handy as a mid-flight snack!
Do you have any other tips on staying healthy while traveling? Feel free to share them in the comments below.