I got a chest infection on my honeymoon
I landed in Maui with my new hubby, and promptly realised I’d not only forgotten my ventolin (sorry, Mum!) but that I was feeling a little niggling tightness in my chest. Anyone with asthma or a history of chest infections will know this feeling all too well.
And, with only a limited amount of herbs on my trip, there wasn’t much I could do to fight it off. I actually ended up having to take antibiotics, and buying ventolin from the US health system (for $90!). Thankfully, I felt better within just a couple of days and could enjoy sunsets and a crisp sauvignon blanc with my hubby for the majority of our honeymoon.
Even before our wedding, I knew I should be taking very good care of myself because I had a history of getting sick as soon as I rested (as so many of us do!), but I clearly missed the mark a little bit.
Since then, I’ve made extra sure to take very good care of myself before, during and after holidays, to ensure I can enjoy myself to the max.
I know this happens to so many of my clients too.
So why do so many of us get sick right before our well-deserved, much-need, highly anticipated holidays?
From a physical point of view, you may be suffering from adrenal depletion and as soon as you ‘let go’, your body does too. From a mental, emotional and spiritual point of view, in some cases it’s even a self-sabotage; I know people who’ve been working so hard so who go on amazing trips only to spend the whole trip in bed! That’s a very subconscious way of saying to ourselves hmmm, not sure I deserve such a beautiful holiday, I better ruin it for myself somehow.
I know we obviously never want to consciously ruin anything for ourselves, but our subconscious mind is powerful, and knows a lot more about how we’re feeling than we’re always conscious of.
So here are some things you can do to ensure you don’t get sick on holidays (or right before or after your trip!):
Echinacea root is well known as being a wonderful herb to boost the immune system. It modulates the immune system, reduces inflammation, has antioxidant, anti-viral and anti-fungal activity, and has lymphatic, blood cleansing and wound healing actions*.
I never travel without Echinacea (especially after our honeymoon!). It’s important to take it before, during and after flying, and I’d suggest taking it throughout your trip as well.
Other beautiful immune-boosting herbs include andrographis, cat’s claw, Siberian ginseng, and you can also up your vitamin C, zinc and probiotics.
Have a mini holiday before your holiday
How many times have you said (or heard others say), OMG I can’t wait to just get. On. That. Plane! I can’t wait to just be on the beach and do NOTHING! I SO NEED A HOLIDAY. I just need to keep pushing through until then.
Basically, you’re saying to your body Don’t give up yet. You can let go and do whatever you want to do when we’re on the beach / snowfield / plane / train / boat, but until then, keep pushing, striving, holding on, and then whatevs, just get me through to the holiday and you’re off the hook.
Of course we get sick with that mentality. Don’t make your holiday such a big deal to your body. In the weeks leading up to your holiday, give yourself some time off to relax and let go, not with the intention of getting sick before your break, but with the intention of resting before you think you deserve it on your holiday.
Replenish your energy and nourish your adrenals
You can do this in many ways – and it usually begins with making the decision to become a little bit unbusy. Clear some clutter in your schedule and devote some time to your own self-care, to clearing overwhelm and perfectionism by allowing yourself to just be and not do.
You can also take beautiful herbal medicines such as licorice and rehmannia, rhodiola, Siberian ginseng, withania and codonopsis. Plus up your healthy, clean-eating, add a pinch of Himalayan salt to your water for the added minerals and to actually help water balance in your body, which helps with dizziness and fatigue, and slow down.
De-stress for an hour a day, everyday
By doing this, you’ll be giving your body something it really needs. There’s no denying that most of us don’t get enough time to relax, unless we make it! So make time for yourself to replenish your energy by doing absolutely nothing. This is probably one of the simplest things you can do stay healthy.
I don’t need to tell you how to de-stress for an hour a day, but I’ll tell you some of my favourite ways to do this: taking myself off to yoga, lying on the couch with a book (or just lying on the couch for a bit!), walking my dog, going for a walk with music or a podcast, sitting in a café with a pot of chai tea and the paper, journaling, meditating, hanging out with my hubby, family and friends, going for a coastal walk or to a park, reading, writing, colouring in mandalas or painting.
You may even choose to get a massage, facial or acupuncture, which would also be so helpful for your body to rest and replenish its energy.
Eat clean, healthy foods
Of course this goes without saying, but I know oftentimes when holidays are around the corner, the healthy food goes out of the window in place of faster food and more alcohol.
Eating poorly puts a great deal of strain on your body, so while it’s so important to allow yourself treats and to eat for your body and soul, it’s more important that you feel you’re deeply nourishing yourself with the food you’re eating. If you feel you’re not eating healthy, nourishing food, then it’s time to.
Don’t plan anything too strenuous for your first few days of holiday
Unless you’re going on an adventure holiday, allow yourself a little bit of time to recalibrate after all the flying and travelling, drink lots of water, do a little self massage to get your blood flowing, take lots of Echinacea root. Then, let the celebrations begin.
I hope this post is helpful, and I hope your next holiday sees you doing whatever you want to be doing… because you’re so healthy!
*Herbs & Natural Supplements, Braun & Cohen