Traveling comes with a lot of challenges, but eating healthy while traveling internationally doesn’t have to be one of them.
Consistently eating healthy can sometimes be a task. Our modern day environment is just not supportive of a truly healthy, wholesome, ideal way of eating. Therefore, it takes a considerable amount of thought and effort at times to put the cleanest, purest, and most nutritious foods in our bodies. Eating optimally while traveling, especially internationally, increases that challenge.
Not only am I a fitness and nutrition professional, I am also sincerely passionate about health and wellness. Because of this intense passion, I am a more than above-average “health nut.” This means that for me personally, I don’t have “cheat” days, I hardly ever eat out, my greatest indulgence is organic and soaked or sprouted chips with freshly made salsa, and I am intensely committed to only putting the purest and cleanest foods in my body 100% of the time. To some, I might be considered too extreme, but it’s the way our bodies were designed to be fed, and I have no desire to ever feel less than my best!
Despite my commitment to clean, optimal eating, I struggled with knowing what to eat when I traveled recently out of the country. Below, I detailed some solutions that helped me to maintain a mostly clean and nutritious diet while traveling internationally in hopes of helping you to find solutions to eating healthy while you travel.
For me, this was huge. Getting prepared ahead of time was a multi-step process.
I began with mentally thinking of what I knew would be available to me where I was going, and what essentials would have to come with me.
From there, I made a three-columned list.
- Foods to buy at the store
- Foods to make and prepare at home to take with me
- Food items that will be available at my destination.
With my list in hand, I headed to the grocery store. These are a few foods I bought for the trip:
- Organic raw vegetables of choice (carrots, sugar snap peas, and mini sweet peppers) and Organic apples (for my carry-on)
- Mini (the smaller size) Ezekiel brand tortillas
- Whole Foods brand organic Monterey Jack cheese (or vegan option)
- Mary’s brand crackers
- Flavored protein powder
- Raw, soaked/sprouted trail mix
Next, I prepared the foods I was going to make at home for the trip. There are obviously many different options for this, but these were the ones I chose to bring:
- Homemade, clean chocolate protein bar
- Homemade, clean energy balls
- Homemade, clean 100% whole grain (soaked/sprouted) protein muffins
It can be easy, even after thorough preparation, to arrive at your destination and get lazy and lose commitment. Don’t let this happen! One of the key elements to staying on track while away from home was to keep a snack with me at all times. This helped prevent me from getting too hungry when healthy options weren’t available and falling back into convenient, but less-than-optimal, food choices.
When you arrive at your destination, make a stop to the grocery store to buy those things that just aren’t practical to travel with but that can be transformed into simple meals:
- Fresh, raw and organic fruits and vegetables
- Dried black beans
- Fresh, raw salsa and guacamole
- Unsweetened almond milk
- Soaked/Sprouted, organic, and non-GMO tortilla chips
Between the foods I brought and the foods I purchased when there, I had quite an assortment of healthy snack and meal options to choose from.
As a note, most foods can be taken with you through security when you travel. Thus, I allotted approximately ¼ to half of my checked suitcase for food items and then used one of my carry-on bags for a food bag, which is also nice to have when traveling so that you don’t have to go hungry or rely on poor airport food. Certain thick or liquid foods must be put in your checked luggage. Be careful in packing so as not to have accidental spills or breakages.
The main consideration to eating healthy while traveling is being prepared ahead of time and taking into account options for where you are traveling. Here’s to your happy, healthy travels!
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