The natural remedy

Roz Crompton is a Homeopath at Helios, Tunbridge Wells…

Long haul flights can often cause all sorts of problems, is there anything we can do to make the process easier? Homeopathic and natural remedies can help with fear of flying, physical discomfort, general tiredness and sleep disturbances. Helios Stress Relief contains three remedies all associated with fear, anticipation and anxiety, which may be experienced before/during flying. Long periods of inactivity can leave you feeling stiff and achey, with swollen lower limbs, so I recommend wearing flight socks and taking Arnica every 3-4 hours during your journey.

Are there any repellents/bite creams that are less chemically harsh? A great chemical free alternative is Incognito insect repellent products. They’ve been tried and tested at the Centre for Tropical Diseases, and you can choose from a spray, roll on, body wash, soap and incense sticks to burn if you are sitting outside. Vitamin B1 is purported to have insect repellent properties and the homeopathic remedies Ledum, Hypericum and Apis can be very useful to lessen the effects of bites. Miranda Castros Healing Gel for bites & stings and Helios Urtical cream for itching and burning are very soothing and without harmful chemicals.

When travelling to certain countries, why should we take probiotics? A good probiotic supports the gut flora and helps protect against bacterial infection. Due to dietary shifts, un-hygienic food preparation and a change in water, stomach upsets are a possibility, so drink bottled mineral water, don’t have ice in your drinks, stay away from salad which may have been washed in tap water and ensure you peel all fruit. If you do have a stomach upset whilst away probiotics will help put the good flora back into the digestive system. I recommend Solgar Multibillion Dophillus and Optibac probiotics for the traveller. There are also homeopathic remedies that can help with food poisoning and other digestive upsets such as Arsenicum and China.

All remedies are made by traditional methods by hand at the Pharmacy and Manufacturing premises in the heart of Tunbridge Wells and Covent Garden, London. Visit to find out more.


The eye care specialist

Sundeep Vaswani is based at Benenden Hospital….

How significant are the sunglasses we wear? Don’t be misled by cosmetically appealing inexpensive sunglasses with dark lenses. While you may think they’re sufficient, only lenses that provide 100% UV protection will give you the necessary protection from the sun’s rays. When choosing sunglasses it’s important to choose a frame that maximises coverage of the eyes and they should have lenses with 100% UVA and UVB protection. In certain activities, such as skiing and sailing, the brightness levels tend to be higher so it’s useful to have darker tints and polarized lenses to reduce glare.

Is there anything else we can do to look after our eyes? Keeping properly hydrated during the hot summer months will go a long way towards protecting both your eyes and skin. The recommended daily water intake is a minimum two litres. Wearing a visor or wide brimmed hat will give you added protection against harmful UV rays and wearing goggles in a swimming pool gives your eyes protection from germs and chlorine. When the sun is hidden by clouds UV rays are still able to penetrate through them, even if you’re in the shade. So stay indoors when the sun and its UV output are at their peak: midday.

Sundeep Vaswani is a Consultant Refractive Optometrist at Benenden Hospital. To book an appointment or find out more call 01580 240333 or visit

The GP

Dr Zoë Barron’s travel tips….

Any tips on avoiding jet lag? It can be very difficult to avoid jet lag completely, but there are a few ways of minimizing it. Maintaining good hydration is an obvious one, and avoid getting a hangover! Start thinking about the time-zone you will be landing in prior to reaching your destination and nap on the plane accordingly. When you land, try to adjust your body to the new time zone by staying awake and getting an early night. I, like many other GPs, don’t recommend sleeping tablets. They can leave you feeling worse during the flight and can easily become relied upon if not used with sensible care and attention. Best to avoid.

Any advice on great products to take to make travel more pleasant? Anything cashmere. Socks, a scarf or a jumper make everything infinitely more comfy and warm as in-flight air-con can be brutal. A facial misting spray can help keep the skin hydrated and baby wipes are useful to freshen up with before arriving at your destination. Grab a good lip balm and use skin moisturiser, as massaging the hands and feet can help with circulation. Rehydrating eye drops reduce that pinky, bleary eyed appearance at arrival and an eye mask and ear plugs are a must if you actually want some shut-eye!

Dr Zoë Barron. MBChB, MRCGP qualified in 2002 from Leeds University and is a GP partner in Yarm, Stockton-on-Tees.

Jumping for joy 

Bounce your way to better muscle mass with  Sarah Maxwell, as she explains the benefits of one of her favourite forms of exercise – trampolining  As a child I always wanted a trampoline but it wasn’t until my twenties that...

Nourish to Flourish – the effects of alcohol on our bodies

Nutrition & Lifestyle Coach Charlotte Lau takes a look at the effects of alcohol on our bodies For some, drinking alcohol can be part of a balanced lifestyle and a way of celebrating and marking social occasions. But everyone is...

Keep Your Cool

With the climate hotting up, Sarah Maxwell get to grips with exercising safely in the heat Today I’m enjoying basking in glorious sunshine, contemplating doing a lunchtime workout. The usual excuses come to the surface, ‘it’s too hot to exercise’,...