Eating Healthy While Away From Home

Traveling can make it difficult to eat your usual healthy diet. However, with a little planning, you can still eat healthy while on the road. Follow the tips in this article to eat healthy while away from home.

For many of us, while we are in our usual everyday environment, we can follow the recommended dietary guidelines that consist of a variety of vegetables, fruits, low-fat dairy, whole grains and lean protein, along with a minimum of 30 minutes of moderate exercise daily. However, when we travel, we are at the mercy of our surroundings. For some, these changes cause unfavorable effects on the digestive system and energy level.

With some planning and organization, it is possible to reduce undesirable side effects. Here are some suggestions:

  1. Remember to drink. Individuals often reduce liquid intake during travel for various reasons, the primary being lack of access to bathrooms. This reduction may leave us feeling fatigued. With 60% or more of the human body consisting of water, it is vital to proper bodily functions. Additionally, for some, caffeinated drinks may increase urgency for bathroom breaks so limiting caffeinated drinks is a good idea. You may be saying, “but how do I keep awake?” Try whole fruits and plenty of water to help keep you alert.
  2. Travel with healthy snacks. Pack a cooler for road trips that include healthy snacks such as celery, carrots, melons, grapes, peanut butter, cheese, and whole-grain crackers. When a cooler is not an option, pack or purchase whole fruits, whole grains snacks, nut butters or dry roasted low-sodium nuts.
  3. Purchasing food. Select items that are baked or grilled instead of fried or covered in heavy sauces. Just like at home, think fruits and vegetables. Soups and salads are often available as quick and easy alternatives but for the latter ask of for the dressing on the side.
  4. Stretch and exercise. Utilize what is available while traveling; take walks, do stretches or light exercise when stopping for gas or food. If flying, some airports now have gyms in the terminals for public use or try walking those long terminals while you wait.
  5. Don’t be afraid to ask. Restaurant staff are often willing to alter menu options for food to be prepared the way you prefer. Also, order dressings and sauces on the side or vegetables in place of fries. An additional option may be shopping at supermarket for some of your meals.

A bit of planning may reduce some of unpleasant side effects of pre- and post-travel. Make the travel as nice as the vacation itself, knowing that you will arrive at your destinations feeling like yourself will make everyone more comfortable and your experience more pleasant.

Happy and safe travels.


Dietary Guidelines
The United States Department of Interior’s United States Geological Survey USGS, The Water in You: Water and the Human Body,

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