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Health & the Modern Traveler: How to Travel with Body and Sanity Intact

By Deidra Garcia, Men Science

    Keep in mind these tips to stay in top shape no matter where your travels take you:

    - Pack a small first aid bag containing aspirin/ibuprofen, cortisone cream, band-aids, antibiotic ointment, antihistamines, sterile gauze pads, safety pins, adhesive tape, tweezers, travel scissors, anti-nausea tablets and antiseptic wipes. All of these products can be found at your local pharmacy. If you're really roughing it, you might consider adding insect repellant, water purification tablets and a small flashlight.

    - If you're traveling internationally, research your destination and find out all the required immunizations and vaccinations. A trip to the doctor's office can take care of this and can also inform you about any illnesses or health risks associated with your country of choice.

    - No matter where you go this summer, it's a good idea to pack sunblock. An effective sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher with broad-spectrum protection against UVA/UVB rays can insure your one day at the beach won't mean three more days of agony in the hotel room (or a lifetime of wrinkles and dark spots down the road.)

    - Although water in many countries is safe to drink, stick with bottled H2O so you don't upset your system with an unfamiliar water filtration process. Boiled water in tea and coffee is usually safe to drink.

    - Resist the urge to load up on calorie-popping, "roadside" food, and take along some healthy alternatives instead. A vacation isn't really a vacation unless you get a break from your usual routine, but try to maintain your regular diet, drink plenty of water and get some exercise. Otherwise, the credit card bill won't be the only thing you're working off for weeks after you get back.

    - Keep a personal medical history with you that states your contact info, doctor's name and number, allergy list, medication list, blood type, insurance company info and any relevant medical facts. It can be a lifesaver when you travel and it fits easily in your wallet.

    - Take an extra pair of glasses or contact lenses. Checking out the action on the beach isn't quite the same when all you can make out are vague, pinkish blurs.

    - Pack your usual grooming and skincare products and take them along to avoid the hassle of shopping in a new place that may not even carry what you need. A simple, convenient bag can keep all of your stuff in one place and go anywhere you do.

    By Deidra Garcia,

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