How to Eat Healthy While Travelling
How to Eat Healthy While Travelling
I have just returned from a 9 day trip to the USA, the weather was lovely and hot and it was great to see friends that I haven’t seen in 3 years!
I have to admit I wasn’t able to stick to my diet 100%, I did make some allowances for the fact I was on vacation and I decided that I would just focus on avoiding my main enemies-gluten and sugar.
The USA is definitely the epicentre for unhealthy food. We ate out most evenings and since we were on a budget we stuck to cheap and cheerful bars and restaurants.
I was quite excited to find that most places do sweet potato fries, which most of my friends sampled. Although they have been deep fried so don’t really qualify as a healthy food, they are a better alternative to potato fries, because despite their sweet taste they are low on the glycemic index and therefore release glucose slowly into the blood, preventing blood sugar spikes. They are also high in vitamin A which is important for eye, skin and immune health.
However, if you are Celiac or strictly gluten free, ordering fries from a Restaurant is not a good idea because you can’t guarantee that the oil in the fryer hasn’t been contaminated when used to fry other foods such as battered fish. So be sure to ask the establishment if they use a different fryer for gluten free options.
9 Tips to eat healthy while travelling
1) Don’t forget to pre-order a gluten/ dairy free menu option with the airline, but be aware that it might still contain sugar and other unwanted ingredients. I’m a food snob and try my best to avoid plane food, so I made my own hearty quinoa salad packed with protein and antioxidants. This recipe by Deliciously Ella, one of my favourite bloggers, was just the ticket:
You can take any food on the plane as long as it is not a ‘liquid’, unfortunately liquids include humus (my favourite on the go food), nut butters and pastes. Some airlines don’t give out cutlery so be sure to grab some plastic knives and forks before you take off!
2) Take as many snacks as you can fit in your luggage. I took gluten free oat cakes, gluten free oats, gluten free bread, quinoa, almond butter, chia seeds and cinnamon for my porridge. The oat cakes and almond butter made fantastic healthy snacks and for breakfast I ate gluten free oat bran with chia seeds, coconut milk and cinnamon (for sweetness), this provided the fibre I need to maintain healthy digestion.
3) I also packed plenty of these amazing guilt free/clear conscience Raw chocolate pies, raw chocolate is a true superfood and was known as the ‘the food of the gods’ by the Aztecs. It is associated with happiness because it boosts endorphins that help alleviate depression and promote a sense of well-being. It also has the highest antioxidant rating on the ORAC scale and unlike commercial chocolate which looses all its nutritional value in the pasteurization process, raw chocolate retains all its vitamins and minerals such as: magnesium, calcium, sulphur, zinc, copper, potassium, vitamin C, E and B vitamins.
Now I’m not a paranoid flyer, just an informed one. Flying can deplete your energy due to the massive electro magnetic radiation that the plane gives off, the plane ride itself can give off 1000 times the radiation of the airport body scanners. Raw chocolate is a great way to boost your energy levels after landing, as is meditation so it’s also important to rest after flying so that your natural energy field, known as ”chi” in Chinese medicine, can reboot.
4) If you are staying in a hotel take a teaspoon and maybe a bowl. You can use the coffee machine to heat water and then add the oats. I did this, but didn’t have a spoon so I used a coffee stirrer and drank the oats out of a cup. It provided my friends with a good laugh!
5) Research the menu online before going to the restaurant to make sure they cater to your needs. I found this tasty Organic Power Greens Salad with added chicken at Houlihan’s restaurant in Hershey. The blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, goats cheese, poppy seed dressing served on organic kale, spinach and chard leaves was a delicious combination of sweet and savoury. This superfood salad was a nice treat.
6) Most burger options can be ordered without the bun, this burger with cheese (I eat cheese rarely since I seem to tolerate it well) and mushrooms was really tasty. Note the sweet potato fires.
7) Order sauce on the side and check that it is gluten free. It will probably still contain sugar though so this way you can limit how much sauce is on your food or avoid it all together. Ask for plain olive oil instead, which is a healthier alternative.
8) Make sure to specify gluten free when you order a salad (they seem to love to put croutons in everything), I ordered a lot of chicken salads during these 9 days. I have to say I’m impressed with the portion sizes, it is a nice change because for some reason chefs in England seem to think people who eat salads are not very hungry!
9) If staying at a friend’s house get them to take you on a shop and give them a private cooking lesson. My friend Jason now knows how to cook a healthy stir-fry with vegetables, gluten free tamari sauce, fresh basil and garlic! I don’t think he has ever seen a garlic bulb before. I love teaching people how to eat healthier and spreading the message of conscious living.
Wishing you safe and healthy travels.