Sonja called me to see if I was preparing my body for the trip. I told her I bought Ethiopian coffee beans at the organic market. Apparently that’s not quite what she had in mind. She recommended I start taking vitamins, drinking a cola a day, and limiting my food intake. Whaaaaaa????
VITAMINS: Although I already should be taking a daily multivitamin, the routine is hard for me to stick with. However, I started (for the fifth time this year) taking a multivitamin today. I’m supplementing that with Echinacea and vitamin C to boost my immune system. I found numerous references stating that taking a daily multivitamin or mineral supplement to prevent malnutrition and improve immune function will increase your chances of warding off parasites.
COLA: It’s been at least 2 years since I’ve had a Coke, or Diet Coke, as it were. It’s strange to think that I’m taking steps away from being healthy so that I can stay healthy in Ethiopia, but Sonja says that parasites don’t like the chemicals in soft drinks, so today was the first of many over the next couple of months. Cheers!
DIET: Particularly in remote areas, food in Ethiopia is the scarcest, and most sacred, resource. Well, food and clean water. I’m less worried about the lack of food and more about the repercussions of whatever I put into my mouth. I do plan to pack a few energy bars and a bag of nuts in my allotted 16lbs, but I should really lay off the 2,000 calorie dinners to prepare my body for the much smaller meals (i.e., a banana and injera) to come. (This is going to be rough.)