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Staying Healthy in India

Dear Students and Parents,

As we are sure you know, staying healthy in India will require more vigilance than at home. You will find more information about health and medicines in the Course Prep Manual, and we will be sharing all that we know with you when you arrive in India, too. We want to emphasize that you know your body and your body’s needs best, and these extra things are only suggestions. We carry a very extensive first aid kit at all times, so it is not necessary to pack any common over-the-counter medications such as Advil, Imodium, etc. Also, please keep in mind that we will be collecting all of your personal medications once you arrive.

Here are a few extra items that we have found beneficial:

  • Anti-bacterial gel, to keep your hands clean (helpful, but not a replacement for good, old-fashioned soap!)
  • Probiotics, to support gastrointestinal health (make sure that it doesn’t need to be refrigerated)
  • Vitamins and herbal supplements, as you see fit. Alternatively, Ayurvedic herbal supplements are widely available in India; try the local way!

Anything which promotes a healthy immune system or works as a dietary supplement is fine. There is a huge range of options available and we encourage you to learn more about what makes the most sense for you.

We do our best to provide a diet over the course of the semester that we think is healthy and abundant. “Indian food” is extremely diverse, but often includes lots of vegetables, rice, flatbreads, lentils, and sometimes meat, and will most likely meet all of your dietary needs. Not to mention it is delicious, often all-natural, and sometimes even grown right where you are eating it! While this is our standard, in some rural areas the nutritional content can be lower, so you may want to consider bringing a multivitamin and/or superfood powder.

Additionally, you could bring a few face masks – with an N95 rating, harder to find in India – to use while walking around in urban areas, if you are sensitive to dust and pollution. You can find these at most hardware stores in the US/Canada.

Once you arrive in India, we look forward to having a more extended conversation about staying healthy here – we have tons of tips and tricks to share!

Thank you, and we’re looking forward to reading the rest of your introductions in the next few days!

– I-team