Tasty Tricks for the Traveler

Fight five on-the-road ailments with these foods.
By Lora Shinn

Bites and Burns.
Apply shredded carrots and potatoes to the skin, says Paul S. Anderson, ND, instructor of naturopathic medicine at Bastyr University in Seattle. These root vegetables draw interstitial fluid out of irritated tissues and provide moisture for healing.

Traveler’s Diarrhea.
Burnt toast contains traces of carbon, which absorbs nasty bacteria in the intestines. Prone to this vacation buzz kill? Take one to two capsules of carbon-containing activated charcoal with each meal as a preventative measure.

Jet Lag.
Go heavy on proteins when adjusting to a new time zone—and steer clear of high-carb and high-sugar meals. After a sugar binge, the spike in insulin causes your cells to take in tons of glucose from the blood, and the consequent drop in blood sugar leads to fatigue.

Motion Sickness.
Licorice and peppermint teas relax intestinal spasms. Licorice’s slippery demulcents coat the stomach, and peppermint’s antispasmodic action stops GI muscle contractions. Other mint-oil products (like breath mints) can work in a pinch, says Anderson.

Coughs and Colds.
Reach for that reusable water bottle and stay well-hydrated—especially before getting on an airplane. Lots of H2O helps your body make nasal mucosa, which provides a barrier against airborne viruses. If your nose dries out, seat 22B’s hacking cough becomes more contagious.