When traveling abroad, something as simple as a sip of tap water or a swim in an untreated pool can put you at risk for diseases and infections. West Virginia University Extension experts warn spring breakers to use caution before eating and drinking when traveling.

“Nobody wants to spend a vacation sick with a stomach bug or stuck in a hospital,” Litha Sivanandan, WVU Extension food safety specialist, said. “Education, prevention and preparation are the best ways to ensure a safe vacation.”

The WVU Extension Service website features information on eating, drinking, and medical considerations to limit your risk of illness when traveling abroad. Visit www.fh.ext.wvu.edu, for more information on spring break safety.

Tips range from tap water safety to eating fresh fruits and vegetables when traveling. According to Sivanandan, the biggest mistake most travelers make is falling into habits from home instead of using caution.

“We take for granted that water from a faucet is safe to drink, but when you’re in unfamiliar territory that isn’t always the case,” she said. “Something as simple as brushing your teeth can put you at risk for illness it the water is contaminated.”

For more information on WVU Extension food and health programs, visit www.ext.wvu.edu, or contact your local county office of the WVU Extension Service.


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bu/cw 3/19/12

CONTACT: Ann Bailey Berry
304-293-5691; 304-376-7740; Ann.Berry@mail.wvu.edu