March 14, 2003
Nice to see you paying attention to this issue. I've only experienced it 'badly' once (and that was enough!).
It happen on Copper Mountain in Colorado. Not the highest of peaks, but good enough for this near native Californian! (near native: been here many years :--)
In addition to the real and factious options for preventing the ailment I'd like to add what the Copper Mountain medical staff told me: WATER! Being dehydrated makes you more susceptible to altitude sickness!! For those of us with not so good water drinking habits it's a sure setup for misery. Paradoxically, they also mentioned a particular "diuretic" was also helpful (don't recall the brand, but I'm sure a call to the Copper Mountain Medical Clinic could fix you up).
To those two I'd like to add my own, from the health food store item. When you're picking up your Garlic and Co-Q 10 tablets you might pick up some DMG (Di-Methyl Glycine ). I've used it to enhance endurance for running so I strongly suspect that it too would be helpful in helping your body handle oxygen better. I'm not aware of any toxic affects of any of the above, but as usual it's always best to consult your doctor and other knowledgeable health care professionals before taking the plunge.
Oh yes, one other endurance enhancer and oxygen better user product (yes, deliberately twisted grammar) is Octacosanol (AKA Octacosal Alcohol). It too helps the endurance, BUT with this product there is a six to eight week "saturation period." AND to have any FEELABLE affect you have to exercise near the upper end of your comfort zone. If you do, after the saturation period you'll notice the wall you probably hit consistently for weeks suddenly moves back several paces!
Pretty consistent stuff!
You can take it w/o exercising and it may do some good such as when you hit the higher altitudes, but at sea level w/o exercise it's like taking sugar pills...you wont feel anything.
My take on the matter. Thanks for the tips!!