Summer travel season is about to kick off with a well-deserved start. Many folks have spent much of the last two years sequestered in their own homes or within the small sphere of their immediate community. This situation helped to determine the strength of our adaptability in our living and workspaces, our relationships, and our diets.
There were limited restaurant options for quite a while, but that, fortunately, led to many of us cooking more at home. We now had time to evaluate what we eat and what improvements could be made.
Now, travel is unrestricted business trips and personal vacations are in full swing, but that brings a new potential problem with how we eat when we travel. No one wants to reverse the healthy lifestyle journey we have worked so hard to achieve.
Any travel merits some meal planning before boarding that plane or starting up the RV. Don’t reverse course in your healthy habits when a few steps can keep you on the diet you want and need.
Before You Venture Off
A little Googling is your friend. Know your destination so it is easier to put together a list of restaurants that have healthy eating options. Many restaurants list their menus on their websites and often include selections geared toward vegan and vegetarian, gluten-free, and heart-healthy.
Chefs are ready to welcome back diners in their establishments, prepare diverse menus, and accommodate most dietary requirements and requests. You can also contact many chefs via their websites if you have food questions that don’t appear to have an online answer. More and more venues are serving items made with gluten-free flour or other baking flour substitutes that are healthy. Take advantage of these healthy food options.
Packing Some Snacks
It’s easy to revert to noshing on something unhealthy if we get too hungry while traveling or when waiting in airports. When packing your flip flops and sunscreen, don’t forget to include a few healthy snacks so hunger won’t become your enemy. Fill snack-size bags with dried fruit and nuts or homemade granola. Apples, oranges, grapes, and bananas are easy to carry in a purse or overnight bag as well are carrot sticks and celery stalks. Whole-grain crackers or pretzels with peanut butter or small pita pockets filled with other nut butters or individually wrapped string cheese make a handy, protein-laden snack.
Road Trips and Restaurants
You are on vacation so, of course, there will be meals in restaurants and maybe the occasional indulgence. But filling a cooler with healthy food options while taking a road trip will cut down on expenses and help you stay true to eating healthy.
A cooler provides more options for food when you travel. Bring along single-serving containers of hummus or guacamole and include cut-up veggies like peppers, mushrooms, cucumbers, and broccoli for dipping. Tuna pouches and hard-boiled eggs are also easy ways to get a healthy dose of protein and to help you feel satiated without turning to something salty or sweet. Single-serving applesauce and yogurt mixed with other fruits, nuts, and oats are great substitutes for empty-calorie desserts.
Never forget your hydration. Drinking water is always important and easy to forget! Always carry a multi-use water bottle and if you need something with a little more taste, small bottles of coconut water can add a delicious spin when trying to quench your thirst.
You’ve Arrived at Your Destination
Whether you stay at a five-star hotel or backpack down a coastline, there are myriad options for maintaining an enjoyable, yet healthy diet. A little preparation regarding what you want to eat is all it takes to maintain nutrition that sustains you throughout your travels.
But don’t forget- you are on vacation. A little indulgence can make your journey fun and worthwhile. Maybe the town you are in has an old-fashioned ice cream parlor or your hotel restaurant has a world-class chef. Sample some delicious foods and enjoy all the experiences they and their multiple grams of sugar bring. You deserve this vacation.