Staying Healthy While Traveling
Do you ever feel like your healthy eating habits fly out of the window as soon as you’re on vacation or traveling? If your answer is yes, you’re definitely not alone.
Traveling and going on vacation can be an amazing way to re-charge and let go of your daily routine. Yet, it can also be a time where your eating habits seem to vanish.
For a lot of people, being on vacation is also a time where you feel more “allowed” to indulge in everything from ham and cheese croissants and truffle oil french fries to creamy pasta and chocolate drizzled sundaes. And don´t get me wrong, it’s perfectly fine to indulge once in a while, but just because you are on vacation it does not automatically mean that your body is more receptive towards unhealthy food.
With that said, even if you want to eat healthy and satisfy cravings it might actually be a challenge to find healthy food. The country you’re visiting will most likely have a different food culture, you might be travelling with a group of people where everyone has different routines and tastes, and you simply don’t have access to your own pantry.
So, what are some concrete things you can do in order to stay healthy while traveling?
Bring your own (healthy) snacks
Regardless if I am going on a three-hour train ride somewhere, or a long-haul flight to a different continent, I always bring my own snacks. Especially at the airport (and also on the plane itself) a lot of the snacks and meals are processed and filled with sugar (not to say expensive!) so bringing your own snacks is a great way to stay healthy, while also being kind to your wallet (win-win!)
If you need some inspiration in terms of what to bring, here are some of my favorites:
- Healthy nut & fruit bars (without refined sugar)
- Cooked quinoa with sweet potatoes, seeds or nuts, sprinkled with some olive oil
- Dark chocolate (min 70%)
- Carrot sticks
- Veggie chips
- Nut butter (either single servings or just fill up a container that is maximum 100 ml)
- Dates (I love filling them with almond or peanut butter!)
Navigating the hotel breakfast
Depending on where you are staying this can either be a hit or a miss, so a good idea is to check with the hotel beforehand what kind of breakfast they serve. I have been to hotels where they have had several amazing healthy and organic options, but I have also been to places where white toast with ready-made jam and pastries pretty much were the only options.
When I know I am going to stay somewhere where they hardly serve any healthy options, I bring my own toppings. That way I know I can always go for a delicious plate of fruit (which most hotels serve) and sprinkle my toppings on there, such as:
- Homemade granola
- Chia seeds
- Flax seeds
- Hemp seeds
- Shredded coconut
- Dried figs
- Cacao nibs
A lot of people also feel that they need to eat as much as possible when a breakfast buffet is included. Anyone who can relate? Again, if you do, you´re not alone. However, overburdening your digestive system (and most likely feeling more heavy than satisfied) just to make sure you take advantage of the “free” buffet is by all means not worth it.
Instead, take your time to eat and eat until you feel satisfied. If you are worried about getting hungry again too soon, bring one of those delicious snacks on the go with you on your day out.
So, are there any other alternatives? Absolutely.
One of my personal favorites is renting an Airbnb (if the location allows for it). What I love about Airbnb is that you have the option to cook some of the meals at home. Not only is this usually a more healthy option (since you know exactly what you are putting in to your meals), but it also helps you stay within your budget.
One of the main reasons why you´re normal healthy eating habits seem to fly out the window when traveling is that you tend to eat the majority of your meals at restaurants, where you are not guaranteed healthy options.
My best advice around restaurants is to do thorough research beforehand. Check to see if you can find some good restaurants in the area that serve healthy options. That way you can also ask your travel companions in advance if they are okay with the list of restaurants you come up with.
Taking all of this into consideration, let’s not forget that you are on vacation and the last thing you should be doing is stress about keeping up with your normal health routines. Eating healthy should never be associated with stress or any other negative feelings.
Simply be mindful of the things you are eating, and do your best to integrate as many healthy options as possible. Your body and mind will thank you for it.
For similar topics take a look our article about Beach Boday How To Keep Fit On Holiday
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