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Helen Pensanti, M.D.

Quick Order Natural Hormones Dr. Pensanti Interview with John R. Lee M.D.

Eating Tips for Traveler's Health

It is very easy to pick up infections from contaminated food and drink when traveling overseas. The most common infections are E coli, Shigellosis or Bacillary dysentery, Giardiasis, Cryptosporidiosis, and Hepatitis A. Less common infections are Typhoid, Cholera, Rotavirus, and Norwalk-like virus.

How can you stay safe health-wise if you are traveling outside the U.S.?

Make Sure You DO NOT:

  • Use ice cubes. Even if ice has only come in contact with the glass offered to you, discard the ice and clean the glass with soap and water thoroughly.
  • Brush your teeth with tap water.
  • Eat any raw food.
  • Eat or drink any unpasteurized milk or milk products.
  • Eat or drink undercooked or raw meat, shellfish, and fish.
  • Eat food from street vendors.

Make Sure You DO:

  • Select all food and drinks with CARE.
  • Boil water vigorously for one minute and then allow to cool to room temperature.
  • Drink canned or bottled carbonated beverages or alcohol.
  • Wipe clean any surfaces with which the mouth will have direct contact.
  • If you drink tea or coffee, make sure that it is made with boiled water.
  • Have children with weaker immune systems use straws brought from home.
  • Eat fruit you have peeled personally.
  • Eat cooked food only if it is still HOT.

Use iodine drops from a first aid kit to sterilize water in a dire circumstance. Use 5 drops per quart/liter for CLEAR water and 10 drops per quart/liter for CLOUDY water.

Some people have premedicated themselves with antibiotics before traveling but the CDC does not advocate this because it can cause additional problems, especially if you encounter a drug resistant strain of pathogen.

Instead, BOOST UP YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM BEFORE TRAVELING. There are many good immune boosters available, most easily packed. Be safe, and happy traveling!

Cordially,

Helen Pensanti M.D.

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