• Sweden edition
India worst for stomach ailments for Swedes

India worst for stomach ailments for Swedes

Published: 05 Jan 2011 09:33 GMT+01:00
Updated: 05 Jan 2011 09:33 GMT+01:00

The Swedish Institute for Infectious Disease Control (Smittskyddsinstitutet, SMI) has list the countries where travellers are most likely to be affected by diarrhea and vomiting, according to newspaper Dagens Nyheter.

Top of the list is India, followed by Indonesia. Other countries include Morocco, Thailand, Tunisia, Egypt, Turkey and Bulgaria. In addition, there is also a risk of Swedish tourists getting sick in Greece, France, Portugal and Spain, although the odds are not as high.

The most common stomach bacteria are campylobacter in the water and those from chicken, pork and lamb meat, as well as shigella in vegetables and salmonella in eggs and chicken meat.

In India, the risk for campylobacter is high. Salmonella is also very common there, as well as in Indonesia, Thailand, Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco, Turkey and Bulgaria.

Shigella, which causes stomach pain, diarrhea and bloody stool, is most common in India and Egypt.

Other infections that tourists are at risk of contracting include hepatitis A and B in Egypt, the rest of Africa, Turkey and the Middle East, dengue fever in Thailand and South America and malaria, which is prevalent across large parts of the world.

TT/The Local/vt (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

13:02 January 5, 2011 by Aimal
u see how gud and safe Pakstan is for Swedes visitors....
13:40 January 5, 2011 by arslan11
You will travel to India and at least come back.. But in Pakistan you will be killed by Taliban or kidnapped for ransom. Even the body gaurd has killed the Governer of the largest and modern province yesterday as he said something in support of Christian woman who said something against Prophet Muhammad..

see top story on http://www.bbc.com/
14:39 January 5, 2011 by J. Doe
And LYME DISEASE in North America (Canada and U.S.)

Lyme disease is caused by the bacteria BORRELIA. Different varieties of this bacteria exist in different geographic locations, and thus, the varieties manifest with varied symptoms in varied individuals.

Swedish diagnostic/treatment protocol only recognizes the varieties which exist in Sweden/Europe. Läkemedelsverket guidelines repeatedly state that because N. America borrelia is different, N. American guidelines are not applicable to Swedish/European varieties. However, Sweden has NO guidelines to diagnose/treat N. American borrelia, and Sweden does NOT allow the diagnostic/treatment protocol used in N. America. Patients with neurological borrelia infections of N. American origin are denied treatment in Sweden. Furthermore, Swedish doctors refuse to recognize diagnoses from outside Sweden.

Around 300,000 Swedes travel to N. America EACH year. Around 20,000 N. Americans live in Sweden. U.K. sources state that 20% of UK reported borrelia cases are aquired abroad, including the U.S.

The Riksdag Ombudsman has said this issue lies within the realm of the Socialstyrelsen. The Socialstyrelsen refuses to answer questions related to this issue.

Borrelia is also found in Asia. Current European protocol is challenged by patient advocacy groups throughout Europe.

(Google info yourself. This site has rejected a list of sources.)
15:03 January 5, 2011 by N0DE
Why even talk about Pakistan when news is about India ... ?? Some kind of complex people have ....
15:15 January 5, 2011 by cloud&rain
This must be actually true, but some biological considerations are being negated. Yes there are such diseases common in Countries in between both the tropic of cancer and tropic of capricon. Most of the countries listed lies in these geographic areas. In warm climates, all living organisms thrive, and all kind of life forms are present. The thing is Indians are more immune to those diseases than those people who live in Europe to those diseases. Its just evolutionary logic. Those people who are recessive to those diseases would have been eliminated earlier by natural selection. So most people in India and other tropical countries have developed immunity to those diseases by evolution. But to expect scandinavians to develop those immunity who evolved in not a tropical zone is understandable. I have lived all my life there, I have drank the same water everyone does there, but I am more resistant to those diseases, than a normal scandinavian. But Scandinavians could survive tundra climate, very cold places, and european diseases more than me, Because they have lived here for generations and could evolved to suit this geography. I can't complain Scandinavia is too much cold, because it is so for millenniums. Also rain forest are the worst places, where all kinds of diseases, insects live. One can't blame if they go in to rain forest and get bitten by leaches, get some diseases.

Also taken in to consideration, yes there are poor sanitations in India, and lot more diseases, but according to some replies done here, how come people responsible for those diseases? If people should have to be responsible for diseases then entire europe is responsible for almost wiping out native americans, who were infected with small pox, which is unknown in Americas until the arrival of europeans there. Also agreeing to the fact that India needs a lot to do to comfort the tourists.


//lol hahahaha last time in some olympic games it was more worse. more diseases in india.//

Amuse me more. Olympics never happened in India.

//its better go to africa but not india.their food their bathrooms. indian people also take shower once in a month.//

Its pure prejudice, if not bigotry. Probably you have camera fixed in all Indian bathrooms, I guess. At least Post sensible, if not intellectual.
15:21 January 5, 2011 by Fernandis
In general, ppl in India love to live in filth, they don't want any change. There is a famous statement by indian foreign minister when he was complained for dirty toilets and apartments during common wealth games 2010, he replied "You must accept this, this is what we can do maximum for hygiene" :)
16:05 January 5, 2011 by cloud&rain
@ Fernandis.

Could you please give me some reference for the post you made?
17:01 January 5, 2011 by kshatriya
@ cloud & rain

I am an Indian and what fernandis said is true. I am not sure if its the foreign minister or the jack ass member of parliament who was appointed to organise the games said that but he was removed from that responsibility and the crowd booooed him on the opening ceremony of games when he came to give his speech.

@theibmsstate you are so mistaken,,,, indians take shower much more frequently than others, most of them twice a day. Its a religio-cultural practice.

Atleast the risk of hep A,B and dengue which are more dangerous than a stomach upset are not so prevalent in India

Welcome to Incredible India! hahahaha
17:03 January 5, 2011 by roaringchicken92
I just wanted to be in the editing room when TL was deciding what picture to include with this story. Ah, the Swedish humour!
17:47 January 5, 2011 by EP
Wonder why the report doesn't include Sweden itself, together with the bog inducing beer and machine coffee? Typical of the Swedes commenting about far-flung places but never looking at what's going on at home.
17:48 January 5, 2011 by Fernandis
check this out:

P.S. some pictures can be very offensive to someone :) so be careful!

17:54 January 5, 2011 by Joydeep Dash
We have a number of Swedes( clients )visiting India every year. Barring a couple, we have never got this problem. The ones that get into trouble sometimes do not heed travel advice.

There is a always chances of food-borne, water-borne and other infectious diseases in India if you are not careful. It's equally true for most tropical countries.

One needs to consider taking vaccinations before travelling (you will of course survive without it ;-), stick to bottled water and be judicious about restaurants. Your hotel can give you a list of good restaurants.

I am from India but have lived abroad for a number of years- so it's no different for us now. When we visit India for a fews weeks, we follow a restricted homecooked/safe diet for " acclimatisation" before venturing out for more adventerous food.
19:08 January 5, 2011 by hjoian
hardly a news worthy item. ..... Swedes also get sick travelling to Denmark due to the amount of alcohol they consume.......
19:43 January 5, 2011 by kshatriya
@ Fernandis

check this out:

"P.S. some pictures can be very offensive to someone :) so be careful!


That matter was cleared without confusion, those rooms were not to be occupied by the visiting sports persons. they were used by workers, I understand thats very unhygienic behavior from their part but it was not supposed to be given to the visitors. And they were cleaned before the visitors arrived.
20:00 January 5, 2011 by Freelife
I have lived in India for quite number of years. Safe water is a big problem in India. Thousands of people die there very years because of unsafe water.

Please check the following link. If you are concerned, you can contribute.


India is not cold country. It is a tropical and temperate country. Many places in India get heavily rainfalls for almost 5-6 months. The climate is much suitable for bacteria and fungi growth. Sweden has 4 months of winter with less than 0 *C temperate, whereas in many places temperature never goes below +20 *C.
20:06 January 5, 2011 by wxman
As a matter of fact, every country mentioned in the article makes everyone else sick, not just Swedes. Filthy water, bad hygene and questionable cooking habits all contribute to the toll on tourists from clean places.
23:38 January 5, 2011 by theibmsstate
indhra gandi was killed by his own Gunman do you know this.

pakistan one province governor was killed by his gun man.

pakistani nation living standard is much high than indians.

pakistan everything is good then india
01:08 January 6, 2011 by ngecenk
@theibmsstate boy your swedish must be good because your english suck as hell!

but its true that hygienist is not entirely depend on how often we clean. i come from indonesia and its a tropical country. its harder to get rid of dirt down there since it will come and go very often. and also the steady temperature is the best condition for any living things, including microbacteria. swedish extreme temperature is not suitable for any species, including human. thats why we invented jacket, heater, and hot shower :)

but one thing for sure, tropical people has a better antibody against those bacteria :D
01:42 January 6, 2011 by pathfinder.uppsala
@theibmsstate !!

are you some freaking crazy?

better then india !? hahhahahaah !!

i am not an indian but i am well aware of india and pakistan.

You are just an retarded person...no point of talking to you and i can see your English skills which is enough to determine you how much better you are then an ordinary Indian :))

and you are not even feeling sorry for an assassinated person from your own country !!

Grow up buddy :))
07:10 January 6, 2011 by adnans
cloud&rain @ well written and informative! u r absolutely right and i do agree with ur opinions.
09:25 January 6, 2011 by Bölö
Every year 16 million people visiting India. There is no report of death or acute health problem for these problem. I agree there are lots of health & hygiene problems internally. It is not affecting the short term visitors. With the population of 1.25 billion...it will be difficult to provide health for all scheme like EU nations
09:56 January 6, 2011 by love is my religion
@ all those who are so concerned or worried about the "diseases" in India then please read the theory of famous biologist CHARLES DARWIN- SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST,thats why indians can survive anywhere in world.:).Superior immune system !!! Its a blessing in disguise my friends:):).

You are most welcome to this beautiful country if you are fit enough or vaccinated ;):)

@all those who never get tired of ruining the respectful image of India, please take a look and think before you comment.


We are one the most strongest country of the world but we respect all and expect the same.:)

I hope world live in peace...
10:01 January 6, 2011 by Bölö
Every year 16 million people visiting India. There is no report of death or acute health problem for these people. I agree there are lots of health & hygiene problems internally. It is not affecting the short term visitors. With the population of 1.25 billion...it will be difficult to provide health for all scheme like EU nations
10:27 January 6, 2011 by Raady
@theibmsstate !!

your words say that u have absolute no knowledge. Do have some basic knowledge before you comment on some thing ! Read wiki's about Pakistan and India first. Indians or Pakistanis had never problems with intercountry people.

Bathing is so regularly done that anyone else as part of tradition. Indians even doesnt eat food without bathing.

Just check out how people when they are drunk messing up with such little population. And when there is huge population it will be more messed up. Swedish medical services are more worst here than in India, cant keep one suffering for many days.

Effects from the food depends on the place where you eat also. India is a country where you can live with a living sek 20 per day , where sustainability cant be provided by any means ! If you are rich enough you can stay skin untoned by sun !!

@roaringchicken92: I support you, worng picture for the topic discussed.
10:34 January 6, 2011 by jar123
why !!! whenever there is a post of india or pakistan....the indians and paki's start to fight like dogs :).....and as mention by the @bolo,its hard to manage 1.25 billion or provide health benefit to all...same is the case with china...if u guys been to villages of china..they are filthy like hell...whereas sweden got mere 9 million ppl's and swedes eat things which they get as ready to cook without salt or spices in it(as they lack their own food culture).....so it's obvious tht they gonna fall sick...plus weather of sweden is not just unfit for humans its even unfit for bacteria's to grow..lol :D...
11:07 January 6, 2011 by Joshe
@jar123 why !!! whenever there is a post of india or pakistan....the indians and paki's start to fight like dogs :) Good question!

This answers me why just few hundreds of Brits ruled over hundreds of millions of ppl in hindustan (now india and pakistan).
11:25 January 6, 2011 by jar123
i have been many times to india and loved the place,yes agree some places there r very dirty..they r just developing coutry..if some swedes sissy r falling to sick,its there problem...who said them to eat frm rodeside stalls or stay in cheap hotels...and talking of medical facilities in sweden r too good...where docter checks google before writing the prescrisption..(always makes me to laugh..lol)...*point i m tryin to make*..every coutry got his or own problems...no one is perfect...same follows for USA.-.-if u guys seen the Sicko movie...and no comments on pakistan...all knw very well..[i love too live :D]...
17:27 January 6, 2011 by Icarusty
You guys are just being racist. Nothing like a bit of Delhi Belly! India is a WORLD SUPERPOWER now so if you don't like their customs you can go home. Why should they have to wash once, or even twice a year to accommodate those strange westerners with their strange customs? Maybe we should bring some Indians to Sweden instead of the usual Muslim asylum seekers, at least that way we won't have to house them in rooms with showers and a mains water system!
19:29 January 6, 2011 by Bölö
there is no major difference between PAK & India. Culture is same. Food habits are same. Language is same. Fight is due to political and corrupted army officers. They get lots of money by corruption in arms purchase. Developed countries supply arms to these countries and making money. 30% of national budget they spend on arms purchase. too bad for the developing countries. Time will change the status of these countries.
21:01 January 6, 2011 by bow290

what about after a night out on the town and u make the terrible decision to grab a bite of Indian food or... even worse and more common is Australia a "kebab "! if the sauce and doesnt kill u ur wife will in the morning!
00:20 January 7, 2011 by einsteins monkey
th swedish socialstyrelsen makes swedes more sick than any country they visit. the picture should show a governmental person flushing a bunch of kroner down the toilet.
08:03 January 7, 2011 by Bölö
here in Sweden 100s of cases of death due to wrong medication. Will socialstyrelsen advice to people for not to go to doctor or not to buy medicine? for every problem there is a solution. If the tap water is not good in India, they can use mineral water.
10:43 January 7, 2011 by ngecenk
again, its not just about developing country. its harder to clean stuff over there, it took more effort. i think it because the humidity or something in the air i dont have much clue. but the fact that tropical country is dirtier than any other country up there is fact.

doesnt mean that it wont clean at all, yes we can clean it so it looks like in here, but sometimes its redundant. let the body immune system do half of the work :D

i life in sweden and clean my room once a week. so does my corridor being cleaned by janitors once a week. it still looks cleaner if not as clean as my daily cleaned house back there in my country.
11:04 January 7, 2011 by Fernandis
In india, Hindues don't care if they live in filthy and shitty conditions as they can compromise very easily BUT in contrast Christians pay more atention to hygien and they are more organised as a community to take actions against such things.
11:23 January 7, 2011 by Fernandis
if you see any hygienic standards or good health policies in india, its only Brahmons who take advantage, which make only 5% of population as they hold key administrative positions.

Sadly, Hunger is increasing in India with the time, in contrast money is going in few hands creating more billionairs, and if the hunger widely spread arround who the hell will take care of hygiene.

"India has been ranked 67, way below neighbouring countries like China and Pakistan, in a new global hunger index by the International Food Policy Research Institute"...a report by authentic news paper, see in below the link:

http://business.rediff.com/slide-show/2010...w-china-pak.htm For india, first give food to common ppl and then expect good hygienic conditions.
15:41 January 7, 2011 by cloud&rain
@Bölö //there is no major difference between PAK & India. Culture is same. Food habits are same. Language is same.// Please recheck your claim. The culture, language and food habits are not even same within India. There is a sharp contrast between the above mentioned traits between North, south and east India. Even you experience different such things in every provinces. India is a multi-cultural, multi-lingo, and multi-dietary country. May be some north western areas close to border with Pakistan might be having same culture, language and food habits. Please do not generalize everything. @Fernandis. //In india, Hindues don't care if they live in filthy and shitty conditions as they can compromise very easily BUT in contrast Christians pay more atention to hygien and they are more organised as a community to take actions against such things.// I think you want the Indians to be provoked by this comments, and if you might expect that Indians would abuse Christians in retaliation of your post in this forum, please feel free to be cheated. We don't generalize a whole group due to ignorance from a few people of that group. At least educated ones don't do. I even doubt whether you are a Christian. May be you are using a fake name. Who cares your words, that sounds ridiculous. //if you see any hygienic standards or good health policies in india, its only Brahmons who take advantage, which make only 5% of population as they hold key administrative positions. // Again you seem to be deluded from the real situation. You are thinking as if there is only one policy for entire India. Wake up from your dream, every province in India have their own governments and hygiene and health are taken care by the respective state governments. You can see states where the government have good health care and hygiene, and in contrast you might see the other end. Every section of the people has a voice, even if it is less. Even our Prime minister is a from minority, Vice president and many of former presidents a muslim who again are minorities, and government represents mix of all kinds of people living there. Point and specify any mistakes with proper references and claims. We are not reluctant to change. But do not let your prejudice or stereotype speak instead of claims with reference and reason. Don't just blabber something and generalize if you know nothing.
18:03 January 7, 2011 by jjoensuu
India is actually rather far from being a world superpower except because of their nuclear weapons.

They could be a superpower in corruption, however. This could be seen in the problems they had when organizing the last commonwealth games and in the fact that many of their politicians were criminals prior to becoming elected.

A large part of the "growth" in that economy comes from providing services to customers in other industrialized countries. One of the main reasons to why they had to open support centers for people in other countries is because they manufacture very little of anything on their own. If they invented or manufactured their own products they could open service centers for those products. But as it is, they instead open call centers for products made in western countries and other industrialized nations and as a result their country is a "service economy" (a 1980's economical fallacy).

Perhaps this is not so surprising considering that the Wikipedia list of Indian Inventions lists items such as "bangles" as an invention. For example the list of Chinese Inventions (also on Wikipedia) is more interesting because those items demonstrate a use of technology. But I do not think India would have any technology at all unless they had received it from abroad.

Some countries were bombed in the two world wars and afterwards built up their manufacturing base to world class. Germany and Japan are two good example of countries of engineers who had manufacturing even before the wars. India, on other hand, has been populated for thousands of years, was never bombed, and yet still has very little manufacturing.

But all of this is also reflected in the Indian accomplishments in the Olympic Games. Compare them e.g. to the Chinese who starts training at a very young age and in fact manage to get themselves to a medal level. Not that it should be surprising, perhaps. After all India and China have very different cultures and a very different mentality (India being more akin Pakistan and Bangladesh in mentality and cultural background).
18:22 January 7, 2011 by Rick Methven
Indians always have been very industrious and inventive as is illustrated by this story:

The Americans managed to make a thin thread of steel s thin as a strand of hair. They passed it on to the Russians and said ' look at this example of superior American Technology' The Russians drilled a hole through the middle of this fine thread and passed it on to the Indians saying ' this is an example of magnificent Russian technology'

The Indian just lookead at the American thread with the Russian hole, laughed ad stamped on the side in microscopic letters


Over the years, I have spent many many months in India ( and in neighbouring Pakistan) I never fell foul of Delhi or Karachi belly in all my dozens of visits, except on one visit accompanied by my wife when I was hosting a dinner for a senior Indian government official when a sudden attack of the runs lft my wife holding th fort and entertaining the minister while I sat on the Toilet!!
14:03 February 15, 2011 by afinasch
I seriously do not understand the prejudice people have against India and it's people.

I do agree that the the common wealth games were badly organised and every Indian is ashamed of the work done by few of its people in organising the games.

But now there is committee investigating the case and some key people have already been arrested as the investigations go on.

But do understand that no country is perfect, nothing is. We are working towards becoming a better nation and we shall continue to do so.

It is not a easy task to manage a country with 1.2 billion people. And India is not China, it is a democracy with a coalition government represented by both national and regional parties . It is not easy to 'get things done' when the stake holders are so many with varied views and opinions.

Coming to the question raised by the gentleman jjoensuu

Yes we are a service economy! and a proud one!

If you look at the growth patter in the western world, it has moved from agriculture to manufacturing and today majority of GDP contribution is from service sector. India due to its delayed economic liberalisation (1990s) rapidly grew its service sector owing to its surplus supply of well educated, English speaking white collared workforce. That being said, India today is also developing its manufacturing sector owing to the exposure the service sector has bough to this nation.

Coming to innovation, India was too busy dealing with more pressing issues like feeding tis hungry moths to be innovate and change the world as it is today.

We are need based innovators, 'frugal engineering' is our mantra. Our innovations might (A big one) of be little relevance to the western world (today) but definitely have changed the way we (Indians) live our lives today.

A brief case for your reference:

In the early nineties in India nearly 340, 000 were dying of Hepatitis B in every year due to the cost of the vaccine, which was priced at USD 17 per dose and USD 50 for an entire course. Shanta biotech (An Indian company) developed an Indian vaccine costing USD 1 per dose and USD 3 for the total course. Today, the same vaccine is available for USD 0.3. The total no. of vaccines rose from 80,000 in 1991 to 100 million in 2008. Today Shanvac (the vaccine) is widely used by the World Health Organization(WHO) and also sells in USA.

And coming to the point of how dependent we are on the western world, I would like to take you back a century when India contributed about 25% of the world GDP. Most of this wealth went to the British treasury, and Independent India started from scratch as a poor nation. And if India is so dependent on the western world I do not understand why USA with its F18s and Sweden with its Grippen are trying to woo India to purchase their respective products (Personally I think Grippen would be a wiser option).
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