Healthy holiday eating

Healthy holiday eating

Useful eating and drinking tips to keep your holiday safe and happy. Food and drink can cause stomach upsets at home, but when you’re abroad your bodies are dealing with potential nasties they may be less used to, plus more serious illnesses like cholera, typhoid and even hepatitis A can be caused by contaminated food and water. Sticking to fried food isn’t the answer! Just follow some simple rules.

Eating safely abroad

  • Only eat meals that have been well cooked and that are still piping hot.
  • Avoid food that has just been kept warm.
  • Don’t eat raw fruit or veg unless you have thoroughly washed and prepared it yourself. Peel raw fruits.
  • Only eat dairy products like cheese and even ice cream if you know it has been stored properly. Avoid kiosks and street vendors if you suspect ice cream might not have been kept cold enough.
  • Make sure the food you are eating hasn’t been exposed to flies.
  • Avoid raw or undercooked seafood.
  • If you are eating street food, think about whether or not you can see how it has been prepared and cooked, and how the ingredients have been stored.
  • Keep a bottle of hand cleaning gel with you in case you are eating out and about where there are not full hand-washing facilities.

Drinking abroad


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  • Only drink bottled water from sealed bottles, or boil and cool tap water yourself.
  • Don’t have ice cubes in your drink as these will probably be made with tap water – choose chilled drinks instead.
  • If you drink alcohol don’t forget it is very dehydrating. Especially if you are in a hot climate.
  • Don’t leave drinks unattended in hotel bars and public places.

Savvy tip
Many countries have the same hygiene standards as the UK so you should not worry unduly, but these guidelines are good practice at home and abroad.

Pass it on – know where you’re going
The Foreign & Commonwealth Office’s website has useful information on hundreds of countries, including details on health issues. Also read up on local cuisine to see what’s good to try and what’s safer to avoid.

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