Wednesday 17 August 2016

How NOT to get sick while travelling!

Health and Wellness, travel: chronic medications, first-aid

Who wants to get ill while travelling? Apart from spoiling a wonderful holiday or ruining a valuable business meeting, it can be EXTREMELY expensive and VERY inconvenient.

Personally, I like to tackle my own travel-health from three sides:

  1. Prevention
  2. First-Aid and
  3. Special Reserve

Basic Tips:

  • Make sure you have enough of any chronic medication – including birth control pills - to last you through the entire trip, especially when travelling internationally. Medications are not necessarily the same across countries. Note that some countries will require a copy of the doctor’s prescription before allowing you to import your meds. Also be aware of extreme temperatures (aircraft hold as low as -70C, bus luggage hold up to +50C) which may negatively influence your meds.
  • Try to keep to your normal time intervals for the medication. Implement any necessary changes (due to time-zones, diet, etc) gradually
  • Have your teeth checked in good time to have any emergency work completed before your trip! Medical aids and travel insurance seldom cover more than the most basic pain control measures. On-the-road treatment is EXPENSIVE. 
  • If travelling to an area with endemic diseases (malaria, typhoid, cholera, zika virus, yellow fever, etc) take preventive meds or vaccines if you can, and take EVERY possible precaution to avoid being infected while you are exposed. If you are ill within 2 weeks of returning home, make sure to mention your travels to your doctor.


The body’s immune system is and remains our best weapon. Strengthening and supporting the immune system is the foundation of my travel-wellness strategy.
  • Load up with extra generous amounts of Vitamin C for a good week before travelling and keep up a generous daily dose for at least a week after completing your trip. Small doses spread throughout the day (or vitamin C powder dissolved in your glass water bottle) will ensure that the maximum amount is absorbed and used.
  • Get as much exercise and exposure to sunlight as possible (without burning) before and during your trip. This helps to increase your Vitamin D levels while ensuring a good supply of fresh nutrients to the furthest corners of your body. At the same time, waste products are flushed out and stress levels kept at a minimum.
  • Drink lots of good, clean water to help keep all systems GO!
  • If you have a sensitive gut, stick to the rules of sensible eating:
    • boil it, peel it, cook it, wash it or forget it
    • If you are not sure about the water, buy bottled to drink. 
    • NEVER drink anything that you did not see opened and keep it with you at all times!


When the first tummy rumble or throat-scratch occurs, some simple guidelines can still prevent the problem from becoming more serious:
  • Humic Acid (such as that found in Humi-Caps) is an absolutely marvellous all-round first-aid. Use 2 caps x 4 times per day for a quick and effective, proven anti-inflammatory and anti-viral agent (scratchy throat, sore knee, post-nasal drip, sinus, flu etc). For an upset stomach, take 8 Humi-Caps immediately and another 4 caps after 4 hours. All natural, no additives, no side-effects and very affordable – it doesn’t get much better than that! (*)
  • Burned toast (or well-burned charcoal) absorbs toxins in the gut. 
  • Take in sufficient fluids and salts to replenish those lost in the battle.
  • Make your own nasal inhalant using ½ cup cooled, boiled water with ¼ t table salt to combat the irritating effects of dust, air-conditioners and airborne allergens or pathogens. Use regularly and generously and make up a fresh solution as often as you can. 

Special Reserve:

When there is already some pain or the first signs of discomfort (such as fever, swelling or redness, dehydration, coughing and so on) there are a few simple meds which might still prevent a full-scale medical emergency. The normal rules of drug storage and use (out of reach of children, don’t use if sensitive/allergic, NEVER exceed the dose, etc) are even more important on the road than at home:
  • Paracetamol (acetaminophen) is known to combat pain and fever. 
  • Aspirin: For pain, fever, inflammation. Remember its tendency to thin the blood! NOT for children presenting with symptoms of flu. 
  • Chest rub or drops containing menthol for blocked nose or cough. Also useful to cool bites and stings.
  • Antiseptic cream for cuts, abrasions, traveller’s ‘nappy-rash’ and more
  • 2-3 plasters (blisters, fingers and toes, bites and falls)
  • Anti-emetic (car sickness)

If the condition is serious, or does not let up within a day or two, take the punch and see a doctor. 

It is not worth spoiling your trip (and that of everyone else) just to prove how ‘brave’ you are. 

This is definitely one of those times when discretion is the better part of valour.

Let us know your experiences – we would love to hear from you:
  • Have you ever been ill on a trip?
  • How did you stop yourself from becoming ill?
And above all – HAVE A HEALTHY TRIP!! 


Tuesday 19 July 2016

Back to School BLUES?

Millions of children suffer needless reprimands and rejection at school – simply because they do not obtain the right food!

Picture the all-too-familiar scene: Monday morning before school. Everyone gets up in a rush. Where are the socks? And the ironed shirt? Quickly pull a brush through the hair, swallow a few mouthfuls of the latest craze in breakfast cereals and away we go……

“So, what is wrong with that” – you may ask?

Most breakfast cereals consist of little more than refined carbohydrates. They are very quickly converted into glucose and this in turn causes a rapid spike in blood sugar levels.

Now, while all our cells need some glucose for energy, too much glucose in the blood is effectively toxic.

What makes glucose the ideal energy source? The fact that it ‘burns’ easily.

That means, it is chemically extremely reactive
It reacts with almost everything it comes into contact with, causing a massive increase in free radicals (oxidants) in the blood. 
The damage caused by free radicals to the cells lining the blood vessel walls, causes inflammation which leads to atherosclerosis.

This is why the body goes to so much trouble to ensure that the blood glucose levels remain strictly within the optimal limits. 
The Sugar See-Saw (Inter-Med Copyright)
  •  Too much glucose triggers a flood of insulin which quickly removes as much glucose as possible from the blood. This panic reaction by the body may over-shoot the mark and as our blood sugar sinks too low we become jittery, depressed and grumpy – commonly known as ‘dumping’.
  • Now, with too little glucose in the blood, the brain triggers ‘hungry’ signals and off we trot to the fridge or the vending machine (or the school lunch box) for our next sugar ‘high’.

This is the deadly honey-trap of refined carbohydrates which results in diabetes and all the pain, illness and heartache that goes with it.

Get YOUR kids off the sugar See-Saw!

And increase their ability to concentrate, learn and remember. Help them to ENJOY their school experience and make the most of it.

Make sure they enjoy a healthy diet with plenty of vegetables, proteins and whole grains. Save the refined carbohydrates for an occasional, special treat rather than the early morning staple. 

Brain Health will also help to ensure that you and your child obtain all the nutrients your brain needs to function at its best!

Friday 1 July 2016

Unscientific BS-Science

The 'Science' of presenting facts creatively for profit

You may have heard the expression ‘Tobacco-science’ before?

Up to the early 1990’s, tobacco companies were paying scientific research organisations to undertake tests to ‘prove’ that smoking was not harmful. These were reputable organisations such as the South African Standards Authority (SABS), and reputable tests such as determining just how minuscule the amount of tar in each cigarette really was.

Thus real, trustworthy and reliable science conducted by highly respectable scientists.

Until the marketing people got hold of it…..And then smoking became ESSENTIAL for GOOD HEALTH!

Slowly but surely the public has come to realise that there are many instances where similar eye-blinding has taken place. As a result, this kind of BS-Science has come to be known as ‘Tobacco-science’.


The urban dictionary ( defines tobacco-science as “"Science" done on behalf of an interest (organisation) which is defending it's cash cow from overwhelming credible science that shows it is harmful or detrimental to public benefit in some way.”

An example quoted by the urban dictionary is “Science conducted on behalf of the plastic manufacturing industry showing that BPA is a safe chemical for human consumption, when a wealth of credible independent scientific research shows otherwise”


Are there other examples of ‘tobacco-science’ around?

Much of the so-called ‘science’ surrounding the safety and efficacy of various medical interventions gives cause for great concern that it is nothing more than tobacco-science. For example:
  •           Fluoridation of drinking water: fluoride is an extremely toxic substance and the specific chemical used for this purpose is a hazardous waste product of the fertiliser industry.
  •      Dental amalgam: contains mercury and is classified as a hazardous, toxic substance the instant it is removed from your mouth. But putting it in is 100% safe?! REALLY?
  •      Vaccines: many of which contain still contain mercury and/or aluminium compounds. Despite mounting evidence to the contrary, manufacturers still claim NO HARMFUL effects!
  •      Cholesterol levels which for decades have been falsely blamed for risk of heart and vascular disease and been the mainstay for marketing trillions of dollars’ worth of  statins and other cholesterol-lowering drugs   

For more hair-raising information on tobacco-science and it’s implications for human health, this post makes one of many intriguing reads: