Research has shown that between 20 and 50 percent of international travellers suffer some form of stomach bug, and furthermore it can be dangerous, causing severe dehydration, malnutrition and in worse cases, hospitalisation. However, there are a number of things you can do to prevent traveller's upset stomach both before you begin your journey and while you are exploring your vacation spot. Follow these top tips for preventing, identifying and treating traveler's tummy...
Drink bottled water only. In some foreign countries, tap water can carry bacteria and a host of other unpleasant diseases. Bottled water is generally safe, but always remember to check for a secure seal to increase safety.
Shower with your mouth closed. Sometimes, even a small amount of water from the shower can have disastrous ramifications later.
Try iodine tablets. If you can't get hold of bottled water easily, use iodine tablets to purify tap water, ridding it of harmful bacteria. However - you should always use common sense: iodine tablets are safer to use in mountain stream water, but they probably won't have much effect on tap water from an India slum.
Avoid ice in drinks. Order drinks without ice, as this can often be a hidden source of bacteria as often comes from unsafe tap water.
Be careful with street food. There is no need to avoid it completely, but be cautious. The safest street food is cooked or heated in front of you.
Choose clean restaurants. Excellent food can be found at grungy restaurants, but it's better to be safe than sorry. Choose restaurants where you can see your food being cooked.
Take a travel probiotic. Probiotics are essential for travelers, as they work to increase the good and prevent the bad bacteria in your gut, meaning less nasty symptoms. Try ProVen Travel Probiotic (£6.95 for 14 capsules. Available in Lloyds pharmacies, leading health food stores and online at www.provenprobiotics.co.uk.).