If you carry one book when you travel: make sure it is Lonely Planet Healthy Travel – Asia & India
In a world swathed in fast facts, guarantees, recommendations and promises it’s hard to take anything at face value. However when it comes to personal experiences I tend to pay more attention.
This little book by Lonely Planet has stayed in my backpack for over 7+ years. Longer actually but that would pre-date this current journey. Very few things have survived this long with me. And if I lost the book tomorrow I would go out of my way to get it again. Why?
How Lonely Planet Asia & India Healthy Travel has helped me over the years?
- Spain 2005: Torn calf muscle – I read up about the difference between tears, strains, pulls and ligament damage. I also learned how anti-inflammatories should be taken
- Spain/Portugal 2005: I learned about the side effects of Rabies, Tetanus, Hepatitis etc vaccinations and how to treat them
- West Africa 2006: I clutched this book going into a doctor looking for the chemical names for all manner of stomach treatments
- West Africa 2007: I used the knowledge in this book to help someone with Malaria get better medicine. Then did the same for myself
- West Africa 2007: You name it I needed it to eliminate any number of parasites
- Spain 2007: I used the chemical names of antibiotics to stock up on new ones
- Pakistan 2007: I used it to help treat my joyful food poisoning in Peshawar
- Nepal 2008: I learned more about acclimatization medicine and what not to take
- Philippines 2009: I knew the best medicine for Avian and swine flu prevention
- Philippines 2009: How to treat a hot oil burn
- Philippines 2010: Again to the rescue with giardias
- Malaysia 2011: Colon scare this book brought me the facts and what to check
- Nepal 2012: dengue fever and what to look out for
Internet health guides or a real book for health and travel?
I use the internet for many things including further research into aliments etc. It’s great. Only one problem exists when it comes to self-diagnoses. There’s a whole lot of garbage on the internet too. And much of what you read about medical facts ends up being so convoluted everything tends to be “fatal”. And that’s before you even get to the forums.
When you are sick and unsure of what to do or where to go this little book will offer you some great simple facts to steer you in the right direction without setting in any panic. Which when alone in a strange hotel room surrounded by a foreign language and culture can be a massive help in itself.
The very best resource in what to take
So your doctor told you to take 2 of this (brand name) if you get a bad stomach. Great, but when you go to the local pharmacy they stare at you blankly and shake their head. Lonely Planet Healthy Travel gives you the chemical name of many brands out there – meaning it translates well across many lands. I’ve used it constantly to show Pharmacists and doctors around the world what I need.
Pharmacists have smiled widely when I’ve shown them this book and will happily sit on a computer typing up their equivalent to what you need.
Healthy travel in Asia & India only?
No idea. But I used it in Africa and Europe with no issues. Truth of the matter is that if there’s a bug in Asia or India it’s likely going to be everywhere else too. If not there’s also a Lonely Planet Health Central and South America. Also a Lonely Planet Healthy Africa. I’m sure it’s overkill getting all three. But if you are exclusively traveling in one region then stick with the region specific book.
For me personally Lonely Planet Healthy Asia and India has been a life saver of valuable knowledge.
Too much to carry …
It’s the size of two decks of cards side by side. It lives next to my medical bag. I’ve carried it for over seven years and wouldn’t be without it.
Is this book a substitute for medical advice?
No. If feeling unwell please seek out proper qualified medical advice. This book is best used as a guide to possible ailments and should not be used as a substitute for proper medical advice.
For more do check out my article on long term travel and staying healthy.
If you’d like to buy this book, please consider purchasing it through my amazon affiliate stores below: I get a tiny, tiny commission of about USD$00.14. Maybe enough to one day save up and buy a Kindle so I can keep these books with me as I travel.
Due to Amazon’s system I can only realistically offer the .com and .co.uk distributors. To readers outside of these two Amazon zones please try your local listings!
This is an additional travel book review based on books I’ve read throughout my journey