Preventing Travel-Related Illness


ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — According to the national travel and tourism office, 2016 saw an increase of eight percent more Americans traveling outside the u-s. More people traveling abroad means more people at risk for the unpleasant condition called “travelers’ diarrhea” or gastroenteritis. However, we share some food safety guidelines to follow so you and your stomach can relax when abroad and back at home.

Boil it, cook it, peel it, or forget it are the simple recommendations for people traveling abroad. However, this may not be enough to prevent gastroenteritis.

“Basically, you get this when you go to a foreign country and you are ingesting food that has different bacteria than you’re used to,” said Joe Kivett, food safety expert and author of The Food Safety Book.

Kivett says there are further steps people can take to lower their risk. “First is immunization.”

Even though there is not a vaccine to prevent gastroenteritis, he says vaccines for hepatitis a and typhoid fever can prevent foodborne or waterborne infections. Kivett also says to be careful of ice. Ice is, of course, made of water, so if the water is contaminated, so is the ice. And finally, another precaution is to carry ready-to-eat food, such as granola or protein bars in your luggage.

Gastroenteritis affects young adult travelers more often than older travelers. Location is one of the main risk factors. Under developed countries have a higher occurrence of gastroenteritis than developed countries. The CDC has divided countries into three grades based on low, intermediate, and high risk for travelers. See the CDC website for more information.

Contributors to this news report include: Milvionne Chery, Producer; Roque Correa, Videographer and Editor.

To receive a free weekly e-mail on Medical Breakthroughs from Ivanhoe, sign up at: