10 Years of Blog Archive

Thursday, October 09, 2014

Did You Get Sick on the Airplane Flight (Ecuador) Abroad? How We Stay Healthy and You Can Too!

Traveling abroad can be demanding on the body, especially for an older person or a small child; in fact it can be downright uncomfortable and stressful, and to top it off, some folks are sniffling, coughing, sneezing and vomiting on the flight, and they're sitting right next to you!

Can We Blame Airplane Air?

Did you know that sick folks (with germs) do not even have to sit next to you and you still might become ill? This is because you are breathing recirculated air.

NOTE: Modern jetliners maintain they filter the air inside the plane with that of outside air; the process uses HEPA filters, which supposedly traps most bacteria and germs.  They say the filters refresh the air on the airplane about 20 times per hour which would mean new filtered air is introduced into the cabin every three minutes.

However, what about in between refreshed air cycles?  The system is not fool-proof because it only reduces pathogens in the air, and in between refreshed air cycles, microbes can freely float around on the plane and it just takes a second to be infected, if your resistance is low.

Not only that, but airplanes are really dirty and harbor germs and microbes that can live indefinitely on the fabric of the seats, on the seat belts, on the blankets and pillow, the flip down tray, and virtually everything else you touch. It might be a good idea to bring antiseptic wipes and wipe everything down, and if your immune system is not at its best, wear a face mask.

Some Newcomers to Cuenca Get Sick

It is a somewhat common occurrence with newcomers to Cuenca. We met a man in his late 60’s that became so ill right after his flight to Ecuador that he lost 10 pounds the first week he and his wife were here. And it doesn’t stop with adults; children too can become sick from airplanes. We know of one family where three of their four children became ill with a stomach virus the next day after the flight to Ecuador.  The children got well after a few days, but older folks sometimes take weeks to get better and it can be scary for them being ill away from their usual surroundings.

Several other expats we have visited with, also told us they caught colds or bad bronchial infections the very next day after arriving to Cuenca.

Why Some People Get Sick and Some Don’t

It all has to do with the immune system of your body. Most folks don’t get sick, only those who are not in their best health and/or have lowered immune systems. Think about this for a moment. You’re not just moving into another house across town, nor are you moving to another state across the US, but you are uprooting your whole lives, moving abroad for Ecuador!

The preparation that is involved from trying to get everything sold and business affairs in order and finalized can be a hectic, exciting and exhausting experience all at the same time, and the body responds according to its physical condition.

We highly suggest vulnerable folks to heed this message well because a body that is already under stress, or a body with preexisting health issues could be the body that becomes ill from a long flight, and or the combination of the flight and the acclimation to the altitude and new environment of Cuenca.

Who Says You Have To Get Sick?

The good news is you don’t have to get sick. In fact, it is really up to you and how you take care of yourself days and even weeks before your flight, how well your body will withstand attacks to its immunity.

On our last trip to the northwest of the u.s, and weeks before the actual flight, we made sure to strengthen our bodies before traveling. This is something we have been doing for years because nothing is worse than being on a vacation and getting sick!

When we flew from Ecuador and into the US they make you get your luggage and recheck-it, again, and it just so happened we flew into LAX in the middle of the night and “check in” was closed until 6am the next morning. That means we were stuck in the uncomfortable basement of baggage claim.

It was a good thing we were healthy, as we ended up sleeping on a filthy carpet of the airport baggage floor in the Los Angeles Airport during a six hour layover in the middle of the night. We were not the only ones sleeping on the hard, dirty airport floor either. There were older couples, families, and young people resting on the floor, against the walls in LAX baggage claim; obviously they were on layovers too.

You see, this layover was not long enough to leave the airport and stay in a motel; it was just long enough to catch a few nods and catch our next flight to Seattle, Washington. We were already almost 20 hours without sleep, not drinking enough water, not eating healthy food, and we were exhausted. 

Our bodies were taxed but fortunately we strengthened our immune system before traveling and we did not get sick, even though many people were coughing, sneezing and sniffling on the airplanes.

What we do before we travel:  We stop eating white flour products and processed sugars, which we rarely eat anyway, so it is not difficult to go without. And we drink more raw fruit and vegetable juices, adding an additional antibacterial agent of garlic to the mix. Garlic works better than anything else in strengthening the immune system.  We’ve been writing about the miraculous properties of garlic for years! 

In addition to eating well we get plenty of rest, drink lots of fresh, clean water, and if we can we get anything in our lives that needs finalized done, BEFORE traveling, as anything that is not completed will stay in the back of our mind and may cause anxiety undue stress. And we don’t want that when visiting with our family in the states.

Strengthening the body for several weeks before your trip, works wonders. And there’s more good news; when stressful and challenging situations come knocking at your door, you are way better equipped emotionally to deal with whatever situation arises. Why?  Simply because eating a healthy diet affects not just our physical health but our emotional well being too; and these two components, physical and emotional health work together as they are part of our bodily makeup.

Emotional stress puts a toll on the body and a body that is ailing can emotionally exhaust us.  So this is just a friendly reminder to anyone who is preparing to fly abroad:

You can be healthy!
You can stay healthy!
And you can enjoy your travels, and arrive to your destination abroad feeling so much better because you have more energy, are happier, and more stress free!

We also suggest that anyone who is vulnerable to getting sick, for whatever reasons of their own, should actually think about cleansing out the system of toxins before traveling abroad. Cleansing the body of toxins is the most efficient way to get healthy and feel great, and at any age!  

Our health book Sugar Overload Syndrome is an excellent natural healing book for people that want to find natural ways to heal the body and succeed at good health. The book has two free cleanses and healthful whole foods recipes. Click here to see what's inside the book!

This book covers the issues of codependency, ADHD, bipolar, hypoglycemia, alcoholism, depression and more; Angie provides simple, valuable, proven techniques that incorporate a whole foods diet, cleansing, sprouting, juicing, exercise and herbs to treat illness. Includes wholesome recipes, two free cleanses and age reducing and skin enhancing chapters.  Available Here in eBook or Paperback
Print: $17.98  -----  Download: $7.50
Available in ePub Format too! 

Talk to us! Do you have a health tip you would like to share in the comments below? We’d love to hear it.

We're an Expat Family of Five Living Frugal, Healthy and Happy in Cuenca Ecuador! 

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