I’ve been thinking and talking a lot about summer travel lately. There are a number of products I recommend traveling with, but if I had to narrow it down to just one, I’d say don’t leave home without your probiotics. Traveling usually involves going to new places that your body isn’t as familiar with. You eat new foods, encounter new people, and spend your time in new places. As a result, you become inoculated with new microbes. (That means that new bacteria, yeasts, and fungi colonize you, inside and out. I know—it’s hard to imagine, but it happens.) Sometimes the new microbes you encounter are pathogenic, and you get sick as a result—either digestive upsets or that dreaded summer cold. Traveling with probiotics can help keep your immune and digestive systems healthy while you’re away. Don’t leave home without them.


New Foods and Your Digestion

Vacations are the perfect time to try new foods and even indulge a little. We tend to stray from our diets when we come across enticing treats or when we stay with people who are preparing our meals and we don’t want to be a burden with our dietary particularities.

I’m not saying that probiotics are going to prevent you from being uncomfortable when you polish off two scoops of ice cream when you know that you are lactose intolerant, but you may be able to avoid mild digestive disturbances that arise from a slight deviation from your normal food intake, especially when it comes to trying new foods that you aren’t already allergic or sensitive to.


Promote a Healthy Immune Response

Why do summer colds feel so much worse than colds we contract in the fall or winter? No one wants to catch a cold in the summertime, but when it happens while on vacation, it can make you wish you were back home. To keep your immune system healthy and running strong, start taking a daily probiotic well before your trip.

Up to 80 percent of your immune system resides within your gut. Your gut bacteria actually “prime” your immune system. They let it know how it should respond to outside invaders. When your gut bacteria are out of balance, your immune system doesn’t get the right message and may not be able to do its job correctly. This makes it easier for you to get sick.


Probiotics for Traveling

I recommend taking a probiotic every day no matter what, but even if you begin a week or so before your trip, you’ll be better off than if you hadn’t taken it at all. Continue to take the probiotic every day while traveling.

Probiotics do best when stored under refrigeration, but some probiotics are formulated to withstand higher temperatures for a period of time. Look for a shelf-stable probiotic to take on your trip so you can be sure your probiotics are live when you take them. Renew Life’s Ultimate Flora Go Packs are the perfect travel companion for your next trip because they are shelf stable and come in sealed, easy-to-carry go packs.