I love to travel and I love to eat.
Dining as per the locals is my favorite part about traveling; there is nothing quite like saying yes to foods you can’t pronounce or identify when abroad especially when the cook or vendor detects your culinary curiosity.
It is no surprise that when I eat different foods (and normally too much) that my body isn’t used to; I experience some adverse effects like bloat, fatigue and grogginess. Instead, I try to eat one or two simple meals a day with light snacks which allows me to get an appetite going for a delicious, locally inspired dish.
By doing this I am able to enjoy my chosen city while keeping my health and wellness goals in mind.
I’m going to share 3 tips for staying on track (whatever your track may be) while traveling, my mini rule book not surprisingly starts off with “be prepared”, mainly in terms of breakfast and snack items.
Once deciding on your wellness goals before you leave it is important to prepare yourself on how you are going to achieve them, specifically about food choices and how brining your own snacks and making sensible purchases abroad can help you meet those goals – Like mentioned earlier I tend to eat a simple breakfast just like my routine at home, and that saves me both time and calories while I wait for my appetite and senses to guide me to the local tapa bars, izakayas or piazzas for a meal.
It begins before you leave!
Being prepared can start from the get-go, from when you pass security to arriving in your destination city! Did you know that in most countries you can pack some food away in your carry-on or checked luggage (you should double check your departing and the arriving countries rules though) as long as they are solid foods. Albeit there are some guidelines but generally speaking as long as you refrain from any liquids; think soups, dips, mashed potatoes and stews you should be fine. Hello granola bars, wraps and rice cakes!
Bring your own snacks!
- I’ve traveled before with home-made muffins and granola bars. They are pretty light but pack a good nutritional punch if you want to save your appetite for a bigger lunch or dinner later.
- Make home-made trail mix with your favorite dried fruit, nuts and seeds.
- If you are a creature of habit and love your oatmeal every morning than why not bring some with you? Transfer your oats to plastic baggies, add your spices of choices and maybe some dried fruit and all you need is a bowl (or hotel coffee mug), hot water and a spoon.
- If you like a more filling meal you can travel with powdered eggs, add some water and you can zap them in the microwave if you don’t have access to a stove. Pair these with some fresh fruit or veggies and you’ll get a great healthy start to your day.
- If you like protein powders or nutritional shakes transfer some powder out of your huge tub into small ziploc bags, bring your shaker cup and if you’re in a pinch all you’ll need to add is water. Or bulk it up with almond milk, apple sauce, peanut butter, oats or more!
Buy snacks there!
- Find a market nearby and stock up on fresh fruit and veggies, maybe even some hard boiled eggs!
- You can still find snacks and try novel food items in many stores or open-air markers while abroad, in many places you can buy fresh juice from street-side vendors or small dumplings and BBQ meat kebabs to tie you over until your next meal.
How this can help!
- If you have food sensitivities or avoid certain foods totting your own foods can be useful when you’re in a pinch and need something to eat but unsure if the snacks around you will cause you intestinal discomfort. You don’t want to be THAT guest on the walking tour who needs to take multiple bathroom breaks…
- You don’t want to be stuck waiting for your delayed train while hungry. Searching for decently healthy foods from vending machines will be both challenging and unsatisfying.
- No-one likes hangry travelers (hungry + angry). Most travelers are already stressed at airports, stations and ports so don’t make it harder on yourself or your companions.
- Lowering costs- if you are staying in a hostel or hotel with access to a kitchenette you can save some money on take-out or restaurant foods by purchasing seasonal foods from around town.
If you have fitness/wellness goals while traveling, be it to maintain, lose or gain weight this can help you adhere to your travel goals.
Leaving for a trip this fall? let me know and I will follow along with your journey!
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