Many think that travelling or vacationing away from home equals the impossibility of making healthy lifestyle choices. Although this concept is not completely foreign in our family, we have, over the years, grown into health-conscious travelers. Below is Part 1 with tips on how to achieve this.
1. Be prepared
If you take away one tip only from this article I suggest that this one be it! I cannot stress enough how important it is to be prepared if you want to eat healthy whilst travelling. This means:
Make and pack your own food as far as possible. For long-haul flights, I always prepare and pack all the meals, which usually consist of 1 dinner, 1 breakfast and possibly 1 lunch. It may sound foreign, but there are fewer things more satisfying on a flight than saying ‘No thank you!’ to the reheated airplane meals contained in plastic and wrapped in aluminium foil (I’m not even sure it qualifies as a meal?!). And I don’t have to attempt to feed a 2 year old who is mostly interested in opening the plastic lids on everything from the butter container to the fruit jar to the small water glass, all the while focusing on not bumping anything off my own tray with my ‘not-longer-than-average’ arm… Lo and behold when your cutlery or serviette falls down between the seats, or even worse, the passenger sitting in front of you decides it a good time to push his chair back…
I’ll explain my experience instead. Dinner time? Sure honey. I calmly get up and remove our dinner and a spoon from my hand luggage in the compartment above. I open the air-tight lid on the glass container, and feed my son, and myself simultaneously. Once we are done, I take the wet wipes out of the sleeve in front of me and wipe my son’s mouth (if necessary). I even go so far as to give him one of the homemade chocolate brownies I made for the flight, and hand him his water bottle. Dinner served. When the airhostess comes around, I order a water for myself.
What to pack, you might think. I always pack the same dishes, it saves me having to ponder over it pre-flight while I am knee-high in luggage.
Dinner – Paleo cottage pie which consists of a bottom layer of ground meat (beef or lamb) stir-fried with onions, zucchini and carrots, and a top layer of mashed sweet potato.
Breakfast – hard-boiled eggs, peeled – make sure they are boiled hard enough so that they don’t count as liquid and security takes it away.
I don’t like plastic so usually put everything in either glass containers or paper bags (e.g. grain-free crackers, activated nuts, Paleo trail mix). Yes, it gets heavy, but I try to use containers that I can discard instead of wanting to keep for future use. So your load gets lighter as the flight continues!
Similar logic can be used when taking the train, or travelling by car.
Buy healthy snacks upfront, like dried or fresh fruit, raw bars and chocolate from your favourite brands to make sure you are loaded. Upfront is the key word here, do not rely on getting healthy snacks at convenience stores along the way. You might be picky about what you eat, but you do not have to go hungry!
Google ahead for organic restaurants, organic chain stores, stores to buy water in glass bottles, etc. This information becomes invaluable to your holiday when you are walking around the city and feel like eating lunch somewhere. Or when you are planning your day and deciding on which area of the city to explore. Or, knowing where to stop for grocery shopping and how much to stock up on when you are travelling to the next town.
The list does not end here! We have even more tips up our sleeve that will help you in your attempt to stay healthy during your travels. Stay tuned for more next week!
To life & in good health,