COVID Travel: A Holistic Guide to Optimize Travel

With COVID vaccinations opening up more opportunities for travel this year, it’s starting to feel a lot like summer! 

It goes without saying that travel increases one’s vulnerability to illness; a change of environment, time zone adjustments, stress, close quarters with groups of people, shifts in eating habits, all contribute. Whether you are planning to keep it local or take a trip overseas, we want to make sure your journey is as safe and fun as possible. Below are our go-to travel tips for every leg of the way: 

Travel Prep

It's important and wise to prepare ahead of time if you are able. It is far easier to prevent illness than it is to treat it!  Fortifying your immunity is key to staying safe and happy while traveling (or any time for that matter).  So let us suggest a few key ways to boost your immunity as you prepare to travel this holiday season:

  • Probiotics A healthy biome makes up 70% of your immune system. With a healthy gut, you are assured of good immune protection and support.  One of our favorite and best selling probiotics is Metagenics’ UltraFlora Balance. However, a probiotic that does not require refrigeration such as this one, is easier to bring when traveling.
  • Medicinal Mushrooms One of the best ways to ensure a vital and balanced immune system! These powerhouses support all immunity functions and assist the body in dealing with all manners of stress. They are both adaptogenic and immune supportive. One of the best is Host Defense’s MyCommunity which is a blend of 17 different mushrooms. Another really popular one (especially for flying) is Mycoshield travel size peppermint throat spray. Spray right in the back of the throat to ease any worries while breathing recirculated cabin air. 
  • On the topic of mushrooms: if you are travelling to higher altitudes or plan on doing a lot of hiking at higher elevations, try supplementing with reishi and liquid chlorophyll for a few weeks before your trip. Both will help support lung-health, bring oxygen to your tissues, and curb altitude sickness. Our previous blog post talks more about it!
  • Vitamin D3 Clearly the science is strong regarding this immune supporter.  D3 is KEY to a strong and vital immune response.  It is both prophylactic in action against attack, and protective during infection. We can highly recommend a number of good Vitamin D products.  One I particularly like is INNATE’s Vitamin D as it is very bioavailable.
  • Herbal Allies if you really want to bump it up ahead of time, you can add in a good botanical formula designed with anti-microbial herbs and/or immune-boosting herbs.  You can take it prophylactically to get your immune system humming. As long as you are not already ill, you can take a small dose daily.  One that really fits the bill is our very own Immuno Well RX. It contains Astragalus which has long been known for overall immune protection (with especially lung-protective qualities, as well).  It also contains Echinacea, Isatis, Garlic, Forsythia Fruit, and Honeysuckle Flower; all of which are indicated for viral activity. 

On The Road (or Plane)

While traveling it is vitally important to continue being diligent regarding immune protection and support.  Any or all of the above suggestions are appropriate to begin or continue.  Just bring your travel pill pack along with you.  Here are a few suggestions to keep on hand for use along your journey.

  • If you are crossing time zones, it is best to mitigate the physical stress of circadian rhythm shifts.  These throw off sleep, and as we all know sleep is the great healer.  My very best choice, hands down, is this extraordinary product NO JET LAG. Melatonin can also be very supportive to rebalance or maintain circadian rhythms.
  • As we all know, physical hygiene is important while traveling. Bring along this well-loved Grown Alchemist travel-sized gel sanitizer to protect your hands while keeping your skin hydrated.
  • Hydration, hydration, hydration.  Make sure to be conscientious about getting enough water during your travels. Dehydration can set you up to be more vulnerable to infection and can cause discomfort while traveling, as well as interfere with good sleep. It’s always a good idea to add electrolytes to your water, to ensure efficient hydration and prevent muscle cramps.
  • Be mindful of travel requirements. Even if you are fully vaccinated, you never know when guidelines might change. Pack a mask, and maybe a back-up mask just in case!

Destination Suggestion

Once you are at your destination, it’s always good to have a few things on hand in case something comes up. Many of the above suggestions will continue to be useful. For instance, if you find yourself getting a cold or flu, you can bump up your daily dosage of Immuno Well Rx. All the while, continuing your Vitamin D3 and probiotics should go a long way in keeping you protected.

  • Tummy Troubles oftentimes travel means eating differently than one is accustomed (of course, many times this IS the time to splurge). But if you haven’t had a huge variety in your diet for months and then decide to eat the local delicacy, you might want to take digestive enzymes so you don’t regret it. Digestive enzyme supplements contain an appropriate amount and blend of enzymes that cover the basic macronutrients so that you are supported even if your body is not accustomed to seeing some of the foods you decide to eat. Less common but still more common when traveling is catching a stomach bug (or experiencing a reaction to unfamiliar food, etc.). If you are looking for an overall stomach soother (think natural alternative to Pepto Bismol) check out this awesome product, which contains a winning combination of TCM herbs to soothe stomach-upsets of various kinds.
  • Sleep support Finding oneself in a different sleeping situation can be off-setting, even in the best of circumstances.  So bringing along a gentle sleep aid to get you there can only be helpful.  We are a big fan of Remedy’s Sleep Formula which is a blend of both melatonin and sleep supporting herbs.     

Nowadays many destinations and airlines require COVID testing prior to travel. We continue to offer appointments for Rapid COVID Antigen tests, as well as PCR, Molecular/NAAT, and Antibody tests. Visit our Covid testing page to learn more and book an appointment. 

As you embark on your journeys, remember we are here to serve you! For those of you flying in and out of San Diego, we are conveniently located 10 minutes from San Diego International Airport. Stop by and say hi, and let us help you get going!