Fall has arrived and the leaves are changing. Some areas of the mountains just got 3 feet of snow over the past 2 days. The sun is shining and it is going to be a gorgeous week of warm days and cool nights. I just love this Colorado weather!
Wednesday morning, September 27th, Gloria and I leave for Italy for our two week honeymoon. Dr. Thom Brown will be here to take care of everyone who needs his help. He is a very good adjuster and is strong enough to adjust all you big guys, too. I know you will be in good hands while I’m gone. I thought it would be timely to discuss how you can travel and stay healthy on your trip. Nothing worse than going on a dream vacation only to end up sick in your hotel room or too jet-lagged to enjoy your trip. I will give you some of the tips that I have been telling patients for years on how to minimize your chances for getting sick when you travel.
We have had a jet lag chart available in the office for our patients for years. I got it from my acupuncture instructor years ago. He would rub these specific points on his trips to and from China and would never suffer from jet lag. We have the handout in the office and we are getting the version on the web site updated to show the chart. Melatonin is sometimes good for jet lag. Starting the night before your trip, take 1mg up to 5mg of melatonin each night to help you get your sleeping pattern on the right track. If you wake up feeling drugged or drowsy take less melatonin the next night. I don’t recommend you stay on melatonin for more than a few weeks since it is a hormone and it will impede your body’s production of its own melatonin. Sleeping with eye shades on the plane helps block out light and your body will produce more melatonin on its own.
Getting severe diarrhea is a common ailment when traveling to other countries. It is brought on by parasites or bacteria that were consumed in the food or water. Many believe if you only drink bottled water you won’t get sick but it can just as easily come from tainted food. I take an anti-parasitic supplement every day that I’m on my trip just to be safe. I take one to two Paradex, Wormwood Complex or Jug/art on my trips. They contain wormwood and black walnut which works to kill many parasites. Food poisoning is however, usually caused by bacteria so these supplements may not help. I take two to four Echinacea and goldenseal every day of my trip (like Phytogen) to handle any bacteria or virus I may come in contact with. The best solution though, for food poisoning, is Thorne’s SF734. It has Oregon grape and bismuth which will help kill any stomach bacteria. If you feel you might be getting sick take 6-8 SF734 immediately and then the same dose each day for a week or two to kill the bacteria.
If you are traveling to humid climates you stand a pretty good chance of staying in a moldy room or house. In this country, I travel with a small ozonator and plug it in as soon as I get to my hotel room. I turn it on and leave it running the whole time I’m there. I do that even in Colorado because it also helps fight the chemicals that build up from daily cleaning. It has saved me from getting mold and chemicals in my lungs countless times traveling around the country. The ozonator also kills viruses and bacteria which may be left over from the last sick person who slept there. We don’t sell ozonators in the office but we have information on where to get them. If you travel a lot I highly recommend you look into either a travel sized ozonator or a personal air purifier that is about the size of a pager. It can even be worn on the airplane to protect you from the nasty plane air. I also take either 2-Undecyn or 4-SF722 daily when I’m traveling to protect me from any mold I may encounter in old buildings or ruins.
I used to carry Thieves and Purification from Young Living on the plane with me but thanks to the new regulations, no liquids, gels or aerosols are allowed in your carry-on bags. Now I put them on my feet, abdomen and chest before I fly and take two Phytogen, Paradex and SF722 (or Undecyn). Thieves is good for strengthening the immune system and Purification is good for fighting off chemicals and other pollutants. Peppermint oil is good for nausea, fevers and stomach pains. Tea tree oil is good for all kinds of infections and cuts and should travel with you always. I like Melrose because it is tea tree oil mixed with rosemary so it smells a little better.
Sinus Pain and Flying
I also carry Fisherman’s Friend cough drops on the plane just in case my sinuses decide to get clogged up on the descent. If you have ever felt the pain of not having your sinuses and your ears open up as the plane descends, you know how excruciating that can be. Popping a Fisherman’s into your mouth as the plane starts to drop altitude can many times help your ears to open up. If not, you can do a little acupuncture magic on your head and open those sinuses right up. Start by tracing a line straight up from the tip of your nose, between your eyes and up to a point just behind the natural hair line and stick a finger or a thumbnail in that point. For those guys who are follicle-ly challenged, remember where your hair line was as a kid and stick your thumbnail just behind that line straight up from your nose. At the same time, with the other hand, rub at the base of your skull in the back of your head where your spine muscles attach to your skull. I used this technique on a sweet old lady sitting next to me on a plane whose cries of pain and agony interrupted my nap. Without warning her, I reached over and stuck my thumbnail in her head and started rubbing the base of her skull and 10-15 seconds later her pain disappeared. She was able to relax in her chair until we landed while I continued to rub the points. When she found out I had used acupressure to help her pain she showed me the bands on her wrist she was wearing to treat her motion sickness with acupressure.
If you are troubled by motion sickness, we have a homeopathic remedy called Travel Sickness that works well (especially for kids). Dr. Shulze recommends chewing on ginger root and then there are the bands mentioned above that treat an acupuncture point on your wrist. For boats or deep sea fishing trips, keeping food in your stomach is a big help in fighting nausea. Eat and take your ginger or the pills before you get sick because once you start throwing up, it is hard to stop the vomiting without medication.
Lastly, hydration is always important but especially when you travel. Airplanes dehydrate you, higher drier climates dehydrate you, hot beaches and cold mountain slopes dehydrate you and alcohol in any climate dehydrates you. If you drink lots of water (2-4 quarts a day) you can do whatever you want and still feel pretty good. Remember to take your minerals too because water is only half of the dehydration equation. Vacations are for eating and drinking what you want and doing all the fun things you want to try so don’t let dehydration slow you down or spoil your fun. I know I won’t!
We would like to announce that Tiffany Cope has recently joined our staff. She is helping us at the front desk while Deirdre is helping me in the back office. She is originally from Tennessee but does a pretty good job of hiding her accent and is doing a very good job for us in the office. Dr. Cari Brown is still working Friday and Saturday mornings from 9-1 if you need to get in on the weekends. As we mentioned earlier, her husband Dr. Thom Brown will be in the office while I’m gone except on Mondays. He has his other practice in Golden to attend to on Mondays so there will be no doctor in the office on October 2 and 9. The staff will be in the office during the normal office hours of 9-6 Monday-Friday and 9-1 on Saturday. I know things will go smoothly while I’m gone. I will be back in the office from 2-6 on October 12th and 9-1 on Friday October 13th. Ciao!