Whether it is travelling 8 hours to get to your holiday destination or if it’s travelling for work purposes, many of us find it difficult to stick to a healthy way of eating while travelling.
Traveling definitely has an impact on stress and energy levels if you don’t plan ahead of time what it is that you will be eating. So here are a few tips to help keep you healthy while travelling.
1. Choosing the right snacks
Keeping healthy snacks with you means that you don’t have to rely on unhealthy takeaway foods or petrol station convenience store pies and chips. Keeping a few healthy snacks with you in your handbag, car, laptop bag etc. or keeping a lunch bag while traveling will make sure that you are never left hungry.
Here are some healthy options:
- Boiled egg with 3 crackers
- Cold meat
- Fruit (fresh fruit cut into pieces / dried fruit / fruit bars
- / fruit rolls)
- Health bars
- Low fat cheese (matchbox size) with 3 crackers
- Nuts and seeds
- Popcorn: preferably air-popped
- Small pack of mini-cheddars
- Small pack of Low GI cereal
- Trail Mix
- Tuna in an easy to open pack
- Vegetable Crudités and dip (dip can include low fat cottage cheese or hummus in a small container)
- Yoghurt in a small tub or drinking yoghurt: preferably fat free and unsweetened
2. Planning ahead
Choosing which snacks or foods you enjoy from the list above and buying a few of the non-perishable food items in advance so that you always have these items available if traveling catches you by surprise. It’s always a good idea to keep fresh foods like yoghurt and fruit in your fridge as snacks during a regular workday.
3. Staying hydrated
Drinking enough water will always ensure you remain hydrated throughout the day. It may mean stopping more often to go to the bathroom, but it can actually break up a long trip. Try working towards 200-250ml per hour while traveling.
4. Forgot your snacks???
Not to worry as many One-stops have healthy food options available. Keep your eye open for health bars, dried fruit, biltong and yoghurt. Get familiar with the shop at the garage before relying on the pies in the back. If it’s a fizzy cold drink that you would like, there are many sugar-free options available in every store. Almost all takeaway facilities available on your travels do offer healthy options. Choosing salads, wraps with grilled options, or even the burger with little sauce (can be requested) can still form part of healthy diet. Make sure that you don’t ask for the chips on the side.
5. Stick to your routine
When arriving at your destination, try keeping to the same healthy eating habits as much as possible. Always start with a healthy breakfast, even in a hotel there is cereal and yoghurt on offer, or you could ask for poached egg on toast. It doesn’t always have to be a fry-up breakfast. Keep snacks in your bag for during the day and if you have a fridge in your room keeping foods for the next day wouldn’t pose a problem.
Lila Bruk is a registered dietician, nutritional consultant and freelance health journalist.
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