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How Traveling Affects Your Health and What You Can Do About It

People have different motivations for traveling. Most people long to relax and unwind somewhere far from their usual environment. This could be to get away from their typical stressors at work or home. They might need some time, so they can give themselves a break, clear their minds, and come back healthier and more productive.

Others have different media to thank for their yearning to visit other places, experience different cultures, taste different cuisines, and meet new people. Social media made many of us want to travel thanks to the travel pictures celebrities and our favorite influencers share on their favorite social networking sites. For instance, a reputable travel website or food blog can be enough to make you travel in search of the best soul food and local cuisines from different parts of the world.

While traveling can be great for your mind, body, and soul, we can’t deny that this can also negatively affect your health. This is aside from the fact that many things can go wrong while traveling, like your plane crashing, you getting sick, your baggage getting lost, or you getting abducted in a foreign state or country.

Here’s how traveling can negatively impact your health and how you can avoid each one.

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Ruin Your Skin

Many people, especially those with light skin, would travel with the intention of getting a tan. Those with pale white skin often envy people with dark skin tones, which is why we can often see them sunbathing in some travel destinations. While this can help you achieve that beautiful dark brown skin tone, this can also wreak havoc on your skin health.

Sunbathing can lead to sunburn, which results in red, itchy skin. This can also cause blistering and melanoma in severe cases. Even those who don’t sunbathe intentionally can get sunburn.

Traveling can also dry and dehydrate your skin due to the lack of humidity inside airplanes. Getting stuck in your car or by plane can cause puffiness since your movements are limited. Since your diet changes while on a trip, this can also cause significant changes in your skin.

It helps that you keep up with your daily skincare routine and make necessary changes to accommodate your travel. This includes packing your favorite moisturizer and sunscreen, keeping yourself hydrated, and limiting sugary food. Prioritize comfort clothing instead of simply dressing for the sake of style and social media.

Cause Havoc in Your Gut

It can be tough to say no to local cuisines, exotic delicacies, and appetizing drinks when traveling. There are simply too many flavors to taste and tempting food smells to savor and treat yourself with. But the changing diet that often entails increased food intake and possibly more alcoholic consumption can ruin your health and result in a grumpy gut.

Traveler’s diarrhea can cause pain and discomfort and even ruin your travel plans. You can also end up feeling dehydrated, bloated, constipated, or nauseated. The following can help you keep your gut healthy while on a trip.

  • Avoid overeating
  • Stay hydrated
  • Eat lots of fiber-rich food
  • Shop from local stores
  • Avoid indulging in coffee and alcohol
  • Wash hands frequently
  • Bring along over the counter and prescribed medications
  • Know the ingredients of any cuisine before eating if you have allergies

Stress Your Mental Health

Traveling can help you relieve stress. It can help make your mood better and even alleviate signs of depression. Overall, this kind of activity has beneficial effects on brain function and mental health.

But then, we should not forget that some people tend to overthink. Traveling can increase anxiety levels since they are basically leaving their comfort zone. They are essentially leaving the environment that makes them feel safe and secure.

Planning for your next trip is already a tiring and overwhelming task. You can end up feeling stressed thinking about the things you can forget, the dangers you might get yourself into, as well as the scams you can encounter while traveling. The secret to reducing stress, depression, and anxiety while traveling are as follows.

  • Know your triggers
  • Accept that there are things you have no control over
  • Plan your travel but leave room for other activities
  • Enjoy your downtime
  • Share your travel plans and details with someone you trust
  • Invest in travel insurance
  • Get to know the common travel scams and how to avoid these
  • Learn deep breathing techniques and other relaxation techniques
  • Limit time driving
  • Travel with a trusted companion
  • Have something to look forward to after getting back from your trip

While traveling has its benefits, it also has its fair share of drawbacks. Your safety, sanity, and health can be at risk if you are not careful enough while on a trip. Be prepared, learn the must-knows, and enjoy the ride so that you can get the most out of your next trip.

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