Happy Healthy Holidays

by - 15:00:00

Hello everyone!

I hope you're getting ready for the summer! I definitely am! 25 days today until Dominican Republic and my fundraising deadline is getting closer and closer (I'll admit, I'm starting to stress a little). On the whole, I am so ready to relax and get some normality back home instead of this mad life I seem to be living at university currently! Holiday shopping needs to be done. Toiletries need to be bought. I need a visit to the doctors to check up on my vaccinations. Which has got me thinking about all the safety procedures we do for our health when on holiday.

Holidays always have memorable moments. That incredible sunset on the beach, that beautiful waterfall in the middle of nowhere, that unbelievably itchy sun burn on your back... just out of reach. Unfortunately, it's always the sunburn that has a longer lasting impact after you return. So, here's a bit of a reminder, check-list thingy of what NOT to forget to truly enjoy your vacation (without the bad bits).

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1) DOCTOR DOCTOR


Before you go on holiday, get your injections checked. Do you need them? Which ones do you need? Do you need a booster?  Jabs are never fun to have, but they're important. To be fair, they don't bother me too much these days because all I do is think about the places I'm going to. Even if you're going to places that are full of insects meaning you need injections to ensure you don't come back carrying something funky in your blood stream. I'd recommend visiting your GP and asking for a list of previous injections to take away with you. It's best to look at Fit For Travel to see if there is anything extra you need. It also lets you know if there are any outbreaks you need immunisations for. Plus, it's what the doctors use!

2) MALARIA 

Carrying on from your visit to the doctors, you'll most likely be recommended Malaria tablets if you're going anywhere exotic and lesser developed. I have not been recommended them when travelling to the Playa Del Carmen area of Mexico because it is quite tourist based but every time I go to Dominican Republic I need them. So off to the pharmacy I go! You can purchase them online, however. My recommendations would be Malarone, or unbranded Malarone tablets (atrovaquone/progaunil hydrochloride) which are taken daily before, after and during the course of your holiday. I remember my mum hiding the tablets in my ice cream back when I couldn't take tablets whole. Better to get the tablet in your system through ice cream than risk getting malaria!

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3) THE SUN IS HOT

Yes, whether you are a climate-change sceptic, we cannot deny this irrefutable fact - the sun is hot (sometimes very hot). Even a million miles and a shrinking o-zone layer away, this big hot ball of gas in the sky can still mess you up. A tan is always nice to finish the holiday with, but when your skin fades from tan to red - it's not nice. So - sun cream. Depending on where you go, the SF of this will vary. Anything from SF30 - SF50 are always worth having. Even if you're sitting in the shade, the sun can still burn you! Wear sun cream. Spend time in-doors too. As much as laying around in the sun is what some holidays are for, spend time away from the sun. Let your skin recover. It will thank you (maybe).

4) WATER IS WET

WATER. H2O. Aqua. Agua. All of these are incredible things. Why? They keep you hydrated. Enough of the condensation (condescension), it's great. Seriously, water/ keeping hydrated is really freaking important. I have experienced dehydration at completely the wrong time and it is not nice (think 10 metres up on a zip line in Mexico - Ed, or after a long night out with too many pina coladas - KC). Make sure you carry a bottle/flask/bladder filled with water. It can be cold (although more often than not it heats up in your bag throughout the day). Still, warm water is better than no water. If water is too healthy, even a fizzy drink, ice-cream or beer can be the difference between happy body or unhappy body.

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5) FOOD GLORIOUS FOOD

Of course food is good for you! As well as keeping hydrated, making sure you're eating enough food can help keep your energy up throughout a hot summery day. Seems like logic really but on holiday when it is too hot, even I often forget to eat. Or I simply snack on fruit and salad, feeling the healthiest I've ever been. Nonetheless, we still need our source of protein to balance out all the cocktails from during the day (and night). That said, watery foods, like fruits, keep us feeling fresh and even more hydrated. People often disagree, but putting salt on food does actually work. Salt actually helps food retain it's water hydrating you that little bit more, and meats often taste a lot nicer (trust me, I did research). I'm not saying put salt on everything, but I definitely put a good pinch on carved beef when the gravy isn't quite proper northern Brit gravy! 

Ok, so these seem like the simplest of points but it's always good to be reminded! It's taken for me to actually write this post before I realised I need to go and check out my vaccinations list and order some malaria tablets. Luckily, jabs wise, I think I'm up to date but there is no harm in double checking! I hope this has given you a little booster to start your holiday preparation list. No matter where you're travelling, whether it's a back packing trip around the world or a resort and spa break in Europe, it's best to check to keep your health as good as possible! If you are travelling to Europe, then remember to apply for your free NHS European Health Insurance card online!

Happy, and healthy, holidays!

- KC and Edmond!


*This post was co-written by Edmond (his photos too - I had a laptop crisis!), in collaboration with The Independent Pharmacy

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