When you leave home for a long period of time, it can be easy to give up on healthy eating habits. It is too easy to eat food that is convenient but not always nutritious. But eating healthily while traveling doesn’t have to be difficult. While traveling for more than a few days, I often get tired of eating in restaurants – not only because of the expense but also because restaurant food is not always the healthiest food available. Not knowing much about nutrition and healthy recipes myself, I recently turned to the expertise of my brother, who trained at Westminster College in the Victoria district of central London, U.K., and has worked as a professional chef since 1987. He suggested to me that in any situation the body needs to maintain a stable blood sugar level, so it is advisable for travelers to stay away from sweet products like cakes and biscuits (cookies) and eat foods that will slowly release the energy the body requires. I plan to publish healthy recipes on my website, with my brother’s guidance, that will help keep travelers fit and healthy so that they can make the most of their travel time.
Keep in mind that finding ingredients and preparing your own meals can have benefits other than simply satisfying your hunger and energy needs. For example, shopping for a few basic ingredients for healthy recipes in a grocery store is a great way to learn about the community and country where you are staying during your travels. If you are staying in one place for several days or weeks, or even longer, shopping at a neighborhood grocery store can help you to appreciate local tastes and culture, and maybe even to feel more like a local.
Before we get to the recipes, here are just a few basic tips for eating healthily that can make it easy to eat the right foods while on vacation or a business trip.
(Note: The recipes are listed under the “Travel Food” category on my home page.)
Pack Your Own Meal
Packing your own meals for your trip allows you to avoid having to eat the unhealthy options that line the roadways or train platform, or fill the airport terminal. With your own packed meals you can ensure that you eat healthy food that will keep you full and nourished for your travel. You should pack foods that are protein and nutrient rich that are easy to store and won’t be easily smashed or leak. Great examples of these food options are nuts, dried fruit, protein bars and apples. It is preferable to pre-cut fresh fruit to convenient-sized pieces so that you do not have to stop to cut them. These snacks are portable and help to stop you feeling hungry during your travel.
Instead of filling yourself full of sugary treats and snacks, you can stay full and nourished by drinking plenty of liquids. Water, milk and juices are great options that you can turn to whenever you feel an unexpected craving. This will keep you nourished and hydrated during long journeys. It is best to stay away from sugary drinks and alcohol. Drinks, especially freshly squeezed juices (pre-squeezed and kept in a cool box for the journey) during warm weather, as well as water, are an excellent healthy choice for travel. Milk is also an excellent choice if the weather is mild to cool, but needs to be kept chilled if the weather is hot.
Take Healthy Snacks for Your Hotel Room
It is fine to eat some meals at restaurants, but think about which menu options are going to be the most healthy and nutritious. For example, you can choose chicken and fish that are baked or grilled rather than fried, with a selection of steamed vegetables. Also, plan to take along healthy food snacks for when you are in your hotel room so that you don’t feel tempted to grab bags of chips or candy. Bottled water, granola bars, fiber cookies and fresh fruit are great food items to have on hand at all times. This will help you stave off hunger in between business meetings or vacation activities.
Breakfast is generally considered by nutritionists to be the most important meal and the key to feeling full and nourished throughout the day. Breakfast will get your body ready for a full day and help you stay focused on learning about the places that you visit on your travels. High fiber breakfast foods like whole grain toast with peanut butter or oatmeal are great options.
Nutritionists suggest that eating moderate sized healthy meals throughout the day is better than having a smaller number of large meals to maintain proper physical and mental health.
I hope these tips and the recipes that I publish here will show that eating healthily is possible even if you are traveling.
Note (the Legal Bit):
The information presented here is for information purposes only. I am not a trained nutritionist, so before changing your diet or trying these recipes I recommend that you first consult with your nutritionist or doctor for their professional advice.