Intoduction toTravel Health




    An Introduction to Travel Health

     Why a travel link you ask? Well, if you look through our site, you will see many adventure photos from around the world, and with each adventure comes personal growth and insight. The worst feeling in the world is being in a foreign country, and getting sick. So to start this travel section off, some suggestions on "must haves" and "must avoids" that just may be the difference between a great trip, or a horrible trip.

    One of my favorite places in the world is Machu Picchu in Peru. No place in the world can match the peace and tranquility that sitting by the caretakers shack looking down at the lost city of the Incas, no matter how many times you go there. One of my best friends is a licensed guide from Cusco, Juan Ruben Aguarirre. I met him in 1995 when he was only 14 years old. He spoke a little English and I told him I wanted to see some Inca ruins that was off the beaten path. I guess I was probably his first guided tour. He arranged a taxi to take us to Pisac, about 20 miles away. Back then, we had to hike up to the site as the road was closed. The elevation at Pisac is higher than Cusco, but slowly, 2 hours later,  we got to the top. To this day Pisac is one of my favorite sites and only now coming into the public eye. The road up is now complete, and many of the Sacred Valley tour buses go there and give you an hour to see the site.

     I remember that day like it was yesterday. We hiked down on the western side and Juan showed us the shared agricultural terraceing as well as water irrigation system. By simply putting a couple bricks in the irrigation trench, the water was diverted in the opposite direction to water the crops, mostly corn, quinona, and beans. It was getting late afternoon and it was hot, really hot. We'd been gone almost 6 hours. We were resting by a small bridge and we could see a little boy running as fast as he could go toward us, and he was luaghing and in a hurry to meet us. Juan said he probably had never seen a North American. When he got to us, he stopped and said "ola". He was wearing an old worn out sneaker on one foot, and the other was barefoot. I pointed to his sneaker and asked, "hey amigo, what did you lose a shoe"? He just started laughing and replied "no senor, I just found one".

     We finished the final leg of the hike down along the waterfall and we were exhausted. The altitude of 14,000 feet, the heat, and the hike itself (probably 6 miles) took its toll. Our taxi had waited for us, and took us back to Cusco. (The taxi cost $20 by the way). We were starved and Juan said he knew a good place to eat. In Cusco and surrounding area, during the day it gets hot because of the elevation. But as soon as the sun goes down, it drops to 30 degrees in a matter of a few minutes. He took us to a small restaurant off the Plaza de Armas. Chez Maggie, a small brick oven pizza place. The brick oven heated the place, and the pizza was very tasty. We also had a salad and some bread. By eight o’clock, we were back in our hotel, the Hostel Inka World, and went right to sleep.

     The next morning I felt absolutely horrible. I had a horrible headache, I was sick to my stomach, and had very bad diarrhea. Rule #1 on the don't do list. If it ain't cooked, don't eat it. Rule #2, don't ever drink the water.

    Apparently, the salad had been cleaned with the water. I am not implying that the salad was bad, however, it was uniquely different that what my system was used to. This is probably the easiest way to get sick, no matter how careful you try to be. One day away from Machu Picchu, and I was so sick I just wanted to die. All I could think was that I was never going to make it. However.............

     Previous adventure trips to Mexico and Egypt had taught me to always be prepared, and prepared I was. We had brought a lot of supplements on the trip, these should be on everyones "things to do" list. I can honestly say "I would never leave home without them", and don't. As soon as you land in Cusco (45 minutes by plane from Lima, or 2 days by car) the elevation hits you the second you get off the plane. The airport in Cusco is 11,900 feet, and its at the foot of the hill. Everything is up from there. Coca tea will almost immediately allieve any headache, and I also bring a sublingual COQ10 (100mg). Yes I suppose an aspirin will do the same thing, but the dangers of taking the aspirin make it a no brainer. I also would never leave home without probiotics, digestive enzymes, and fiber.  That morning in Cusco, I literally took 10 of my acidophilus caps, and a fistful of my fiber pills. I also did about 100 drops of olive leaf extract, and about 50 drops of Virginia Snake Root. I made about 3 more visits to the toilet, but by noontime, I was almost back to norm. The next morning at 5:15, I was on the train to Machu Picchu, and the rest is history.

     Olive leaf is a truly remarkable herb in that it destroys any bacteria, and yeast, any microbe, and any virus, as clinically tested not only in the US, by around the world. The problem with olive leaf, that no one will tell you, is you need a lot. The liquid form is superior to capsules, but not many companies make a liquid form. The only liquid herbs I would even consider are called Good Herbs, and come from Troy Michigan, please check my web site for the Good Herbs link. When in doubt, try olive leaf. There is a shocking book on Olive Leaf by Morton Walker. I sell the book and highly recommend it as a must read. It sells for only $5.99. Virginia Snake Root is another miracle herb that should be in everyones medicine cabinet. It neutralizes poisions in the body, almost immediately.  Be it food, water, or microbe, Virginia Snake Root seeks out the villian, and neutralizes it fast. Insect bites stop itching on contact. Bee stings stop stinging within seconds with topical application. As the name implies, its historical use has been to neutralize a rattlesnake bite.

     Thus, this is my introduction to our travel link. Doris and I have been about everywhere, and most places at least twice. We've been to the Kava Kava farms on Easter Island, and the Noni plantations in Tahiti. We have met and talked with the local people to see what health problems their country has, and what they do about it. Along the way, we have met a lot of knowledgeable people, and made some rock solid contacts. If you're planning a trip out of the US, please email us and we may be able to answer some questions, save you some time, and especially save you some money. We can provide some short cuts and give travel tips you probably won't find elsewhere. Last December, we went back to the Yucatan. Just before we left, I got in contact with John Anthony West of N.Y. who was bringing a group to Egypt. I asked him how safe that was, and he said Egypt was probably much safer to travel than Mexico. Both his trip and ours were flawless, but I kind of have to think he was right. Mexico has not only gotten very expensive, its also gotten pretty rough to travel. So, with this introduction to travel, I have added a link to Johns web site on Egypt. I have known him since 1999, and highly recommend anyone considering Egypt (do it soon), consider going with him. He is a little pricey, but you will get a lot of extras that the other tour companies simply can't provide. John can get you in the pyramids, or Sphinx, for private meditation or exploration. When we went, he got us in the Red Pyramid, and into the subterranean chambers of Kaffu (nobody gets in there). We also got to meet Zahi Hawass, Robert Duval, and Grahm Hancock, all on the same trip.

     If your interested in herbs, please check our Good Herbs link. I have personally used Good Herbs and sell them exclusively. I currently offer close to 500 different liquid single and combination herbs, the majority only available from Good Herbs. So, until next time, remember the story of the little boy and the shoe, and as my hero Bob Marley would say, "wake up and live".............  j

Jaun Gomez








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