Join Date: Mar 2011
excerpt from my book: “Kroatisches Küstenpatent & Skippertraining”
(Croatian boat skipper License B & Skippertraining)
After histamine has been identified as the most important trigger of seasickness, a histamine-free diet is recommended.
This means that food and beverages that have to undergo a long maturing process (e.g. hard cheese or salami) or alcoholic beverages that are subject to a fermentation process (e.g. red wine) should be avoided. Any intake of histamine through food is counterproductive.
Since the organ of equilibrium is located in the head, head movements should be avoided, especially without visual control of the near and far surroundings.
This is best done by standing midships on deck, at the intersection of the longitudinal and transverse axes. The movements of the ship can be compensated with the legs.
Swings alone do not cause nausea. Only when the head is lowered and raised again does nausea quickly occur. This underlines the importance of the proprioceptive receptors (spatial perception) in the area of the cervical spine.
On a moving ship this means that one should not move the head in isolation, but the whole upper body. Head, neck and upper body should remain a stiff unit.
Therefore, working at the navigation table, where head movements are unavoidable, is particularly feared.
The helmsman rarely gets sick. His eyes see which waves are coming towards him. His somatic sensation corresponds to the expected movement of the ship and the centre of equilibrium in the cerebellum does not receive contradictory but congruent information.
Yawning is often an early warning sign for an upcoming seasickness and should initiate immediate therapeutic measures.
Dust with sea sickness medication and must not be used by the skipper!
One to two vitamin C chewable tablets (Cevitol® chewable tablets) also help at a late stage.
The usual remedies for seasickness (antihistamines) must be taken hours in advance. These remedies cloud the perception and are only suitable for accompanying passengers!)
If all this isn't enough, then sleep will help. During sleep, the histamine level drops towards zero. After one to several hours of sleep you are fit again.
Last but not least, the planning of a sailing trip is important. The trip on the first day should be short, about 5sm (nautical miles), so that a habituation effect can occur. In the naval study, seasickness complaints on the second day were significantly lower.
In total, the study yielded the following findings:
1) The blood histamine level rises with strong movements of the body and therefore also seems to be the most important trigger of seasickness in human medicine.
2) Getting used to strong movements occurs after only one day of pre-exposure.
3) Vitamin C helps above all sensitive persons (women and men under 28 years) against seasickness.
4) Seasickness occurs in 20% of people and is therefore not rare and should not be a taboo subject.
5) Nausea with mastocytosis can be fought with 1 - 3g vitamin C per day.
In summary, a number of measures are necessary:
1) Trip planning, i.e. the trip on the first day must be short in order to take advantage of the habituation effect.
2) Take medication against seasickness in time.
3) Since histamine is the most important trigger of seasickness, the intake of histamine-rich foods and beverages should be avoided.
4) Stay in the midship is prophylactic, standing is better than sitting.
5) Avoid head movements.
6) In case of nausea suck vitamin C tablets.
7) Sleep is an effective measure if everything else should not help.