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My (NEW) Travel Wellness Kit

Travel Wellness Kit

 

When I’m traveling, I’m easy to spot.

 

I’m that girl stirring green powder into her fruit smoothie on the street in Thailand. The one sprinkling chia seeds on her breakfast at the hostel. The one brewing her own science experiments in her backpack to protect her from getting food poisoning.

 

travel-health 02

 

I’m that girl who will hand you charcoal to cure your stomach bug. The one who will insist you inhale her essential oils when you’re nauseous on the bus. The one who openly talks about coffee enemas and parasite cleanses with cute boys.

 

I’m that crazy hippie health nut girl.

 

travel-health 03

 

Because I’ve also been the girl with food poisoning in hostels for days on end. With fevers on party islands in a beach shack. With chest infections in tropical storms. With a bloated belly after months of bread in Europe, feeling insecure because of her broken out skin. I’ve been the girl who almost quit traveling, because she wanted so desperately to feel healthy again.

 

Travel Wellness Kit

 

I decided that I never wanted to sacrifice travel for health, and I never wanted to sacrifice health for travel. There had to be a way to have both.

 

Two years ago, in Southeast Asia, I shared with you all my Travel Wellness Kit, and it served me well for a long time. However since then, I’ve learned some new tricks, traded up, and created what I believe to be a more effective, longer lasting wellness kit. When I’ve got these goods, I know I can handle what the road throws at me.

 

Without further ado, here’s my latest ultra witchy hippie dippie travel wellness kit:

 

Travel Wellness Kit

 

What I Get Locally

 

Oh wait, just kidding. Let’s start off with what I get locally. Because I believe, that going local is always the best way. You carry less luggage, save money, contribute to the local economy, and receive the experience of connecting with the food medicine of your environment.

 

In the tropics I always buy fresh herbs, ginger, garlic, chilies, limes, and turmeric from the morning markets. I make a special tea that stimulates digestion and kills any bacteria or virus. Local honey and bee pollen are readily available in most countries in the world, and help acclimate you to the local environment preventing you from getting allergies.

 

Young coconuts are antiviral, antifungal, antibacterial, and ultra hydrating. Papaya is full of enzymes to help digestion and the seeds are known to kill parasites. Aloe grows wild and is sold in markets in many countries in the world, which not only saves sunburned skin and cleans wounds, but also repairs the digestive tract after food poisoning.

 

I always make sure to buy high quality, cold pressed oil, whether it’s olive oil in Spain, argan oil in Morocco, or coconut oil in Thailand. I slather it on my skin, put it in my hair, and use it to cook with.

 

Alright, for real now, this is what I pack:

 

Travel Wellness Kit

 

Essential Oils

 

The biggest change to my new wellness kit is the addition of high quality essential oils. It’s hard for me to imagine I ever traveled without them. These ultra potent powerhouses come in tiny bottles that you can take in your carry on, last for months, and have so many uses. I also have tiny sample bottles that I carry in my daypack wherever I go.

 

I always travel with tea tree, for its antibacterial properties that come in handy for wounds, insect bites, and blemishes. I’ve also started using a blend called Purification (which includes tea tree) that’s great for cuts, insect repellent, and even deodorant. Copaiba is the strongest anti-inflammatory in the world and I’ve found it extremely useful for relieving the itch and swelling from insect bites. DiGize, another blend I use, is great for nausea and when taken in high doses can actually kill parasites. Peppermint is another one I always travel with because I get motion sickness easily, and inhaling it stops the spins.

 

To boost my immune system and balance my stomach acid, so important when traveling, I have a homemade morning tincture made from 10 drops of Thieves essential oil, 10 drops of Copaiba, 5 drops of Lemon, and 25 drops of olive oil. Most mornings I get a big glass of warm water and squeeze half of a fresh lemon, along with a few drops of the tincture. I have not been sick once since I started taking this four months ago.

 

Read more about how I use essential oils for travel (and sign up to order them wholesale) in my post Why I’m Obsessed With Essential Oils.

 

Travel Wellness Kit

 

Water Kefir

 

If you travel with just one thing on this list, let it be water kefir grains. These tiny freeze dried crystals are packed with thousands of strains of probiotics, enabling you to rehydrate them on the road and brew your own powerful probiotic beverage. When I started using water kefir, it completely changed my life, preventing me from ever getting food poisoning, and almost always preventing me from getting sick.

 

I know what you’re thinking, why not just bring probiotic pills? In my experience, even the highest quality probiotics (we’re talking $100 a month) are not as effective as water kefir. Plus, eventually you will run out, which will certainly happen if you’re on a long backpacking trip.

 

The beautiful thing about water kefir, is that you can continue to make and consume it indefinitely. All that you need is a glass jar, the water kefir grains (completely vegan, dairy free), filtered water, and sugar.

 

Read more about how to make your own water kefir in my post How to Travel the World and Never Get Food Poisoning.

 

Travel Wellness Kit

 

Activated Charcoal

 

For me and activated charcoal, it was love at first swallow. It clears food poisoning within hours, makes my skin glow, and since I started using it in my toothpaste, my teeth have never been whiter. Because it’s ultra absorbent and detoxifying, the charcoal attracts and collects poison and toxicity, that you then flush out. You can buy it in pill form or in a loose powder. The pills are less messy for travel, but I like the powder, which is easier for me to add to a skin scrub with coconut oil and raw sugar, or sprinkle into a homemade coconut oil and peppermint toothpaste.

 

Travel Wellness Kit

 

Spirulina

 

When I travel in places where dark greens are impossible to come by, spirulina powder is a lifesaver. It may not have the same nutrition as a bunch of kale, but one small teaspoon is packed with iron, vitamins, minerals, omega 3s, and protein. It’s extremely anti-inflammatory and when you’re struggling to even find vegetables, it might save your health! It tastes really really bad, so your best bet is to order a fruit smoothie (no sugar please!) and stir in a teaspoon of the powder. Though I’ve gotten pretty used to the taste and can now handle it just stirred with water.

 

Travel Wellness Kit

 

Pink Himalayan Salt

 

It doesn’t take up much space at all, is packed with important minerals, and is soooo much healthier for you than the bad quality salt that’s sold in supermarkets all over the world.

 

Travel Wellness Kit

 

Baking Soda

 

Ok, so you would assume that you can get baking soda anywhere, right? Color me surprised when I got to Morocco and even in a fancy grocery store that carried 10 different brands of ice cream, they didn’t have it. The good news is, it’s a powder so you can absolutely pack it in your carry on and a little goes a long way. Baking soda has seriously saved my life when I was very, ahem, backed up. If you struggle with that problem when traveling, it’s a MUST. Mix a half teaspoon with warm water and lemon juice to drink first thing the morning and your problem will be… eliminated.

 

I also use baking soda to make my own deodorant, toothpaste, and clarifying shampoo. Even hair stylists have told me that the most effective way to clean your scalp (necessary weekly if you’re a beach bum like me) is to mix a spoonful of baking soda with your regular shampoo.

 

Travel Wellness Kit

 

Digestive Enzymes

 

While in the past I had problems with not being able to keep anything in, after excessive quantities of bread in Morocco, I had precisely the opposite problem. Getting raw vegetables, or really anything with fiber, seemed nearly impossible. Since then I’ve vowed never to travel without digestive enzymes.

 

When your diet is constantly changing and often less than ideal, your digestion is bound to get out of whack. Taking a supplement replenishes your body with the digestive enzymes necessary to break down your food so that you can actually absorb nutrients and eliminate more effectively. I recommend taking a couple with every meal, especially if you’re already having digestion issues.

 

Travel Wellness Kit

 

Homeopathic Sleep Aid

 

I’m pretty sure that the number one reason why our immune systems go down when traveling, is a lack of sleep. Between red eye flights, long bus rides, and constantly changing beds, we rarely get the rest we really need. When I planned to take the long haul flight from Seattle all the way to Vietnam in the middle of the night, I wanted to arrive fresh instead of jet lagged. I knew I needed to sleep on the plane.

 

Well, I can almost never sleep on the plane. Back in my pre-health nut days I even took a Valium once, which believe it or not made me MORE chatty. This time I bought Natural Factor’s Tranquil Sleep, natural homeopathic chewable sleep tablets with valerian root in them. I took two, fell asleep during take off (?!?!) and didn’t wake up until we were landing. I slept 11 hours on an airplane. That’s scary effective.

 

Travel Wellness Kit

 

Chia Seeds

 

Sometimes it’s hard to know where your next meal is coming from during long travel days. That’s why I always travel with chia seeds. They have protein, fiber, and tons of Omega 3s, and are known for offering a boost of energy. I add them to my water (which they turn into a gel) if I’m stuck on a long bus ride or sprinkle them on a fruit salad at breakfast so I can get some protein.

 

Emilio's Cafe Manuel Antonio

 

Enema Bag

 

Yes, we’re going there. We’re going to talk about enemas. Because there’s nothing sexier than a clean liver and clear skin, and the travel lifestyle can take a toll on both. Specifically, I’m talking about coffee enemas, which I believe are the most effective way to cleanse the liver that exists. I’m very sensitive to caffeine, so I don’t drink coffee, but I haven’t had a problem taking it this way. By retaining the coffee (fair trade organic please) it moves through your colon into you liver, opening up your bile ducts and allowing the toxins to release. I’ve had my skin clear up within hours of doing one, and I always feel lighter and more energized afterwards. It’s especially good to do after a long flight or after a bout of food poisoning. Order your bag online here, and be sure to pack some good quality coffee.

 

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Travel Yoga Mat

 

Travel is hard on your body. It just is. You’re probably walking more than you’ve ever walked in your life, doing all sorts of physical activities you’ve never done before, and sitting in cramped uncomfortable spaces for long flights, train rides, and bus rides. Yoga is the answer.

 

I’m a pretty strong believer that yoga is in fact the answer to everything, for everyone. Because there is a yoga for every body. Whether you have injuries, tight muscles, a restless mind, sleep problems, digestion difficulties, or headaches, there is a yoga for you. Whether you struggle with accepting your self worth, believing in your dreams, being alone, being with others, motivating yourself, letting yourself relax, there is a yoga for that. Even just spending ten minutes in the morning to breathe and stretch can profoundly change your life.

 

Fortunately yoga has spread across the world, making it easy to take classes anywhere, but I still travel with my own mat. This way I can do yoga whenever I want, wherever I want, especially when I’m totally off the grid. I used to travel with the Manduka ecoLite travel mat, but it’s very very very thin and not very supportive. I’ve since upgraded to the slightly thicker (so it doesn’t pack quite as easily) Jade Travel Mat.

 

This American Girl

 

Good Vibes

 

More important than what you put in and on your body, is the energy and attitude that you radiate from within. Learn a healing art, become certified in Reiki, give yourself massages, do trades with other travelers. Smile. Be positive, be happy, relax, and you will be the healthiest you that exists. Take that attitude with you wherever you go. There’s no better medicine.

 

What do you bring with you when you travel the world to stay vibrant and healthy?

 

 


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Comments

  1. We must be homeopathic twins. 😀 good stuff Camille. Much love

  2. This is a great and super helpful list for an upcoming long term trip. So far this is the only thing I’m worried about..how to stay healthy with a clear skin during the travels. I’m already a huge fan of coconut oil-for my body, hair, white teeth (oil-pulling). Now I’m trying the oil cleansing method for my skin. Would you mind sharing a recipe for your toothpaste and deodorant? I tried to make my deodorant with baking soda, coconut oil, arrowroot powder and essential oil, but I after I poured it into a container for deodorant stick, it was so hard I couldn’t get it out to use it.

    • Yes! I would also love your toothpaste and deodorant recipes!

      • Camille Willemain Says: September 7, 2015 at 1:44 pm

        You are a mind reader sweetie, next week I’m publishing my All Natural Travel Toiletries! Toothpaste, deodorant, insect repellent, hair product, skin oil, and more!

    • Camille Willemain Says: September 7, 2015 at 1:46 pm

      I am sharing my whole beauty kit next Monday :) So excited to share with you!! I’ve found that if I rub a drop of Frankincence essential oil on my face after washing it, my skin looks amazing. Let us know how the oil cleansing goes, I also use it everywhere, but haven’t gotten into oil cleansing for my face yet. With the deodorant, have you tried just putting it in a little glass jar and getting it out with your finger?

      • Yeah, I should have done that. Cause I didn’t make enough for deodorant stick container, it was really hard to get it out even with my fingers. I will use little jar next time. I’ll keep you updated on oil cleansing method for the face. I’m excited to see some results!

        • Camille Willemain Says: September 7, 2015 at 9:13 pm

          I also highly highly recommend you try the coffee enemas if you’re struggling with skin breakouts. It could be bacteria on the skin, but it could also be that your detoxification system isn’t working properly and the toxins are being released through your skin.

          • Hi Camille, This is exactly what I was looking for. Thank you so much.
            Btw: The Himalaya Salt is great for toothache as well (warm water and salt, rinse mouth)
            One question about the enema bag: Isn’t it difficult to clean? Have you tried disposable bags?
            Thank you for sharing this
            Birgit

          • Camille Willemain Says: September 8, 2015 at 8:07 pm

            Ooooh nice thanks for sharing!! I have tried the disposable ones and they work well too. I prefer the bag in the link because it’s more eco use a re-useable one. I just clean it out after each use with some Dr Bronner’s soap and it works fine :) xx

  3. Carolina L Says: September 7, 2015 at 3:52 pm

    Hi! I really wanna try the water kefir thingy but sadly i can’t find any retailers in Sweden (… where I live)! And it doesn’t seem like the stuff on Amazon ships to Sweden either. So annoying:/ Do you have any suggestions? XO Carro

    • Camille Willemain Says: September 7, 2015 at 9:15 pm

      That is crazy that they don’t have it in Sweden…I’m shocked. Have you checked with local health food stores? I also highly recommend making your own sauerkraut, which has tons of probiotics as well, it’s just not very easy to travel with. But if you’re in one place, it’s great.

      • Carolina L Says: September 8, 2015 at 4:48 pm

        Me tooooo! No but nothing came up when i googled it… gonna check again! Mmyees will definitely try sauerkraut, not gonna travel for a few months yet!:)

        • Carolina L Says: September 8, 2015 at 5:24 pm

          WOOH! I found a place where I can buy it from! Haha, wasn’t that hard after all. Costs $24 (209 SEK), seems like a lot but might be worth it since the grains seem to last forever if you take care of them!

          • Camille Willemain Says: September 8, 2015 at 8:04 pm

            Great! Ya, that is expensive but it’s TOTALLY worth it. And they proliferate and multiply, so you can start giving them away to other travelers and spreading health :)

  4. Thank you so much Camille! This is the kind of practical info that I and so many others needed for traveling. And yes, you are so hot in your photos! :-)

    xoxo

    Dave

  5. Haha yes! I love enemas/colonics, too! And I will talk all day about them to anyone with the stomach to listen ha!
    Also a few months back I bought some water kefir grains and have been loving making it! So much better than drinking over priced store bought kombucha!

    • Camille Willemain Says: September 10, 2015 at 11:41 am

      Kombucha is fun for a yummy treat, but to really get the probiotics, the homemade kefir, I find, is way more effective! And cheap!

  6. Hello, I have a quick question. Sorry if I missed it in another post, but, how do you deal with fleas and things of that nature? I am strongly leaning toward traveling.

  7. Hi Camille!

    I am wanting to get some Activated Charcoal for my upcoming trip to SE Asia, however, I think I am wanting to try it in pill form.

    Do you know/suggest a good brand of Activated Charcoal in pill form?

    Thanks :)

    Erica

    • Camille Willemain Says: September 28, 2015 at 9:34 pm

      Hey love did you follow the link on the page? There should be pills there… NOW Foods is usually a good brand for supplements. xx

  8. You are amazing! You somehow were able to consolidate and clearly (and cheerfully) explain so many helpful all natural options – I have literally been looking for something like this for a looooong time. It takes so much effort and it’s so confusing to sort through so many sources online to figure it all out. Thank you SO much for putting this together!

  9. Maggie Buchanan Says: October 17, 2015 at 10:08 pm

    I have been following you for quite a while now and you are a fountain of information. You have inspired me to become a better and healthier person. So because of this I am a member of YL and you are my leader. I am doing quite a few of the things that you have suggested like yoga, meditation, essential oils just to name a few.
    So thank you for being such a wonderful person.
    Maggie

    • Camille Willemain Says: October 22, 2015 at 10:37 am

      Maggie that is wonderful, I am so so so humbled by your comment. HAPPY to have you on my team!! Please let me know any questions that you have xoxoxo

  10. Wow, loved this blog post! Very informative and comprehensive. I also used Thieves on my last trip to prevent sickness, and it really helped me. Have you published specific details or recipes for some of the remedies you use? Would love to know more!

    • Camille Willemain Says: December 30, 2015 at 1:38 pm

      Awesome! This is what I have for now, but stay tuned I’m working on a new ebook The Healthy Girl’s Guide to Traveling the World for 2016 xo

  11. This is simply amazing and I’m eternally grateful. You definitely need to write that book about health on the road and I can assure you it will be a success! (I would definitely buy it!)

    Question:

    I suffer from anxiety. I was going to say that I am an anxious person but I am not. That is not who I (normally) am, but anxiety does creep in from time to time (especially when I am not travelling!). You say that there is a type of yoga for anyone, do you know which one would be the best for that? And what about essential oils? Do you ever suffer from anxiety/panic attacks and if so do you have any tricks?

    You need to do a healthy travel retreat where you teach all of this. :)

    Thanks again!

    • Camille Willemain Says: February 19, 2016 at 10:27 pm

      Hey sweetie, thanks so much for your openness!! I always appreciate that <3 I highly highly recommend ANY kind of yoga for anxiety, mostly because it's a great way to start learning about meditation and breathing. For me, Yin Yoga has been particularly powerful in helping with anxiety, and very easy to do on your own at home once you've taken a few classes. Funny that you mention that I should do I travel retreat, I already do!! I have two coming up, one in May and one in October! Check out the details here:
      http://www.thisamericangirl.com/retreats/

  12. Hi, i was wonderkind if you take malaria tablet. We travel a lot and my husband is sensitive to them. We dont like taking them.

    • Camille Willemain Says: November 22, 2016 at 6:26 pm

      Hey Christel I haven’t taken Malaria tablets because I haven’t yet traveled somewhere where it’s actually a problem. The doctor told me I needed them for Costa Rica which is BS. I recommend asking people who have traveled in or live in the places where you’re going before taking the pills. Best of luck :)

  13. […] my posts How to Travel With Nothing But a Carry On, What Every Girl Should Bring Beach Backpacking, My Travel Wellness Kit, and My Travel Beauty […]

  14. […] for health, cleanliness, and beauty, that last me months and can go in a carry on back. Check out My Travel Wellness Kit and My Travel Beauty […]

  15. […] be sure to check out My (NEW) Travel Wellness Kit with everything I take in my travel medicine […]

  16. My indispensable object in my travel kit (except tootbrush, soap, etc…)

    1) an old SLR film camera with a standard 50mm lens and some colors film rolls. To explore the world, to wait to have my photos printed, to SLOW the process, to think before taking a photo.

    2) a yoga mat – every day, indoor in winter, outdoor in summer, I love a 40 – 60 minutes yoga session

    3) a neti pot – a great help to clean daily my nose

    4) a 2 quarts travel enema kit – for a weekly relaxing and detoxing enema

    • Camille Willemain Says: July 4, 2017 at 8:25 pm

      So cool that you are shooting with film! I have a friend who does the same and loves it <3 What do you put in your neti pot? xx