By Helen Sanders
Helen Sanders is Chief Editor at HealthAmbition.com, a site that provides easy-to-understand health and nutrition advice. She prides herself on providing actionable advice that makes a real impact, which can be followed by regular people with busy lives.
Whether you are traveling for business or pleasure, it can be challenging to stick to your health routine and find healthy food when traveling.
Back home, you have your preferred foods ready to prepare. You’re familiar with your weekly and daily schedule. You know when your “cheat days” are.
When you’re traveling, it’s a whole different story. Your schedule may be altered, or you might not have one at all.
If you’re staying at a hotel, you’ll take most of your meals outside. And it’s not easy to keep on track when you’re faced with a menu of delicious, high-calorie options.
Uncertainty isn’t a good thing when it comes to healthy travel. But sticking to a routine can improve your health and overall well being.
The Importance Of Routine When Dieting
A routine makes it easier for you to practice healthy travel habits and find healthy food when traveling.
For example, going to sleep and waking up at the same time each day. A stable sleeping routine can boost energy and combat fatigue. It also helps your body adapt to a set number of hours to sleep.
Another example is setting aside time before or after work to exercise and continuing it when you travel. You are more likely to commit to an exercise routine that you schedule ahead of time.
Your ability to follow a diet can also improve with routine. You can prepare snacks and meals in advance, even when you’re halfway around the world.
Preparation makes it easier to avoid unhealthy snacks and foods. If you’re in need of a snack, you already have a healthy one ready.
Healthy Travel Only Seems Difficult
When you’re traveling, preparation is not easy. Flights get delayed. The hotel you booked might not have a gym.
And that’s not all: temptation abounds when you travel. A healthy meal isn’t always an option when you’re waiting for a flight. It’s not always easy to find healthy food when traveling.
When you arrive at your destination, it may get harder. You may find yourself eating at odd times of the day. Room service is always available for a late-night snack.
While traveling, people tend to drink more alcohol. Cocktails are a big culprit of travel-related weight gain.
You’re also more likely to neglect your exercise routine in a new place. If you’re on vacation, settling in and relaxing will be the priority.
If you’re on a business trip, you’ll want to start networking and getting down to business. All of these aspects make it hard to fit in a workout.
Healthy Travel Means Keeping Your Diet on Track
So how can you make sure your diet stays on track while you travel?
- First, try to stick to your routine as much as you can. It might not be possible to prepare meals and snacks. Still, you can maintain some healthy habits even if you’re traveling on a budget. When walking about a city watch for restaurants where you’re more apt to find healthy foods even though you’re traveling.
- Try to eat at the same times as you do back home. If you have breakfast at 8 a.m., do the same while you travel.
- If possible, try to bring along a few staple healthy snacks for the trip. These can be nuts, seeds, or energy bars.
- If this isn’t an option, find a grocery store near your hotel. You can purchase fruits and vegetables to keep healthy foods on hand when you’re traveling.
- You can enjoy the local food but avoid heavy dishes. Check out healthy local dishes online. This way, you can have a culinary adventure without straying off your diet.
Let’s say there’s a delicious, decadent treat you were looking forward to. There’s no need to over-indulge.
Try the 3-bite rule. Take just three bites – savor the taste without derailing your diet!
You can also keep healthy boosters on hand to keep digestion stable. Try bringing along a few natural remedies like turmeric and aloe vera.
Healthy Travel Means Avoiding Temptation
Excessive drinking while traveling is one of the most common causes for straying off a diet. Alcoholic beverages are high in calories, especially cocktails.
You are also more likely to indulge in high-calorie foods while drinking. After all, bars often offer tempting snacks like chips and salted nuts.
Avoiding alcohol can be beneficial to your diet and your trip. Ideally, you want to take advantage of visiting a new place. It’s hard to plan or do activities when you’re hungover.
Staying hydrated is important as consuming healthy foods when you’re traveling. Make sure to drink water regularly, especially when you’re out and about. It can be easy to neglect your hydration when things are hectic.
Make an effort not to skip any meals during the day. Even if your schedule is busy, take the time to sit and eat a meal.
Finally, portions at restaurants can be overly large. You don’t have to eat everything on offer. Eat until you are satisfied, and leave the rest.