The Healthy Traveler
Traveling can be a tricky game.
I travel often so I frequent airports regularly. I can’t escape junk food, or stressful “safety” routines, annoyed passengers, and irritated airport security. Not to mention the stress of time changes on the body and waiting at airports that are either freezing cold or hot as hell.
So it doesn’t surprise me that most people catch a cold soon after traveling. Our bodies intake an enormous amount of things in the times we travel. It is no secret that those of us who are health conscious try to choose the healthiest food we can find, wash our hands regularly, and drink lots of water. But there are two things that I want to recommend become part of your travel regime: (1) sleep and (2) a scarf.
Sleep is the most rejuvenating act that you can do.
Per Chinese medicine, the time we sleep is when the blood that has been utilized to power our brains, our multi-tasking and all of our social interactions, gets reallocated back to the organs. The blood then focuses on replenishing the organs so that they are ready to work the next day. This replenishment also applies to our muscles, our brains, our sinews, and definitely our immune system. Sleep isn’t just about getting 6 or 7 hours, but a full 8-9 hours. Furthermore, Chinese medicine tells us that the organ systems work on a clock so the time when our body begins to go internal is around 10-11pm. Therefore, the ideal time to get to bed is before 11pm. This may be a stretch for the busy bodies of the world, but if you want to keep your body youthful, healthy and strong, try when you can to make this a priority.
Before I take a trip, I do many things. Generally, I try to get as much sleep as I can a few days before and certainly the days following a trip in order to let my body to recuperate and rejuvenate. I know sleeping more before a trip can be difficult because it is also when we have a million things to do! So I really do my best to plan ahead and factor sleep into the things that I have to do before I go.
Regardless of the Season, Wear a Scarf
The second thing that I do when I travel is to wear a scarf. I don’t pay attention to the season; it can be winter or summer. I admit that it’s easier to remember the scarf in the winter because of the cold. I make more of a conscious effort in the summer, but add it to your check list, and I will tell you why. One word: Wind.
Wind: The "Cause of 100 Diseases"
Of course we are susceptible to what goes on in our environment such as freezing cold winters or burning hot summers. But in Chinese medicine there is a climatic factor that westerners don’t pay much attention to. This is Wind. Wind is called the “cause of 100 diseases”. It penetrates and invades the most susceptible areas of the body like the back of the neck. This area is very susceptible to wind and can be the first point of entry for either hot or cold wind. When wind invades our bodies, it causes an immune response and voila, we have a cold. When we control wind, it is either the air conditioning or the heating system. Either way, it is usually on full blast and if you are (un)lucky enough to sit right under a blower on the plane you are far more likely to catch a cold. When we take into account that our neck is a sensitive area for invasion, it is a great idea to keep it covered and protected against the erratic temperature fluctuations of an airport.
When we’re trying to keep our immune system strong and intact on a long trip, we have to do whatever we can to take care of ourselves just as much if not more than we would when we are home. Traveling isn’t easy, but traveling while you are well rested and comfortable is a step towards an enjoyable trip and a healthy immune system so that we can continue on with our regular day to day lives.
Two Amazing All-Natural Travel Kits
Our Travel Kit Special Collection includes 3 of our blends specially designed to help you travel with ease. Our Jet Lag blend helps you stay centered in space and time, Hydrate prevents dehydration and Dream helps you get to sleep. Use all 3 to cultivate adaptability and arrive feeling refreshed and ready to go.
Our Travel Kit Sampler Set has 6 of our organic herbal blends: Relieve, Prevention, Tranquility, Dream, Jet Lag, Hydrate and Gut Health. This organic herbal tea blend set is designed to address all the ups and downs of travel from boosting the immune system to calming the nerves, staying hydrated and putting the tummy and digestion at ease.
Factor sleep into your pre-travel To Do List, wear a scarf and try either travel tea kit to help you and your loved ones adapt to your journey comfortably. Bon voyage!