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Tips for staying healthy while traveling

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Posted at 1:26 PM, Dec 03, 2014
and last updated 2014-12-03 14:26:24-05

We've all been there. Traveling in a new country, and we find ourselves spending more time in the bathroom than out enjoying the sights. Or we're all set for a week of sitting on the beach and a cold keeps us in our hotel room instead. 

Getting sick on vacation is no fun. And while there's no guaranteed way to stay healthy while traveling, Consumer Reports has come up with a list of tips to give you your best chance.

Wash your hands. A lot.
You should be doing this anyway, but areas where large numbers of people congregate together (you know, like an airport) are just germ factories. Washing your hands with soap for at least 20 seconds, or using hand sanitizer, is one of the best ways to protect yourself from germs.

Water, water, water.
It's easy to forget to take care of yourself when you're traveling.  But taking frequent water breaks are necessary for your health. Getting dehydrated can make you really sick, and a dry nose is like a welcoming mat to colds and bugs. If you're traveling in a country where the water can make you sick, make sure you don't go anywhere without a good supply of bottled water.

Pepto-Bismol. Really!
The best way to prevent traveler's diarrhea is to stick to bottled water and only eat hot, freshly-prepared foods. But taking bismuth subsalicylate four times a day while you're traveling can cut the chances of getting diarrhea in half.  Be sure to check with your doctor before deciding to self-medicate though.

Moderate your food intake.
I know, I know, half the fun of vacation is the food. But over-indulgence can cause coronary artery inflammation, a common prelude to a heart attack. You can enjoy the local cuisine without stuffing yourself to the max.

Keep your meds with you.
If your luggage gets lost, you don't want all your prescriptions lost with it.  Keep them in your carry-on where you can reach them easily.

For more health tips, check out the original article here.