Are you headed out on the open road, rails, or sky? Traveling, whether it’s for vacation or business, can totally derail our normal routines and maybe throw a wrench in our healthy choices. Regardless of where you’re headed, here are 6 secrets for healthy traveling:
Vacation is a time to kick your feet up and relax, maybe even indulge a bit, but that’s no reason you can’t have a few healthy options up your sleeve. Scope out the area where you’ll be staying – get some dinner reservations on the books or find a nearby market where you can grab a few essentials. Cruise through online reviews, browse menus, or crowdsource your friends for recommendations on food spots, it can save everyone the dreaded “what’s for dinner?” debacle.
Keep it clean
Getting sick on vacation can definitely put a damper on the fun. The easiest way to prevent a lot of illnesses is through simple hand hygiene. Try to wash your hands more often while traveling since you’ll be exposing yourself to a lot more germs. If you’ll be flying, consider bringing some disinfecting wipes in your carry-on to wipe down your tray table and seat area and avoid touching the items in the seat pocket if you can help it.
Pro tip: You can give your immune system a boost before traveling by keeping your microbiome healthy.
Maybe it’s just us, but airports and major highways don’t tend to conjure up thoughts of fresh, healthy meals. And with many airlines not providing meals during flights, it can be hard to keep your tummy full during trips without turning to convenience foods that may not be the friendliest to your health goals. Plan ahead and throw a couple of snacks in your bag to keep cravings at bay after a long day of travel. Some of our favorites include fruit, nuts, and trail mix. Bars are a convenient option too, just be sure to read the label before you buy. Try to find bars with few ingredients and little to no added sugar, like RxBars or Kind Bars.
Flying is particularly dehydrating – altitude can dry you out more than you may feel. Add in that you can’t bring liquids through security and things can get tricky! Staying adequately hydrated can help you arrive feeling refreshed and energized, and trust us, that’s worth the bathroom breaks.
Pro tip: pack a reusable water bottle that you can fill up once you’re past the checkpoint. It will ensure you have plenty to sip on before the beverage cart’s trips down the aisle (which will help you avoid the temptation for that mid-flight soda or juice). If you do need to grab a beverage from your friendly flight attendant, we recommend tea, coffee, or some bubbly water.
We all deserve a little R&R, which can be a healthy component of vacation time. For those moments when you need a break from the beach chair, introduce some movement into your day. In a new city? Try a walking or bike tour to catch all the sights. Planning a trip in the great outdoors? A walk, hike, or swim can be a great way to get a dose of fresh air. Many hotels have gyms or offer free exercise classes, give one a try if any catch your eye! Beach yoga anyone?
Check in with yourself
Lines, crowds, flight delays, traffic…let’s face it, traveling can be stressful. Take a moment to check in with yourself, especially during travel days. A few deep breaths can go a long way. The Brook Experts are available every day if you have questions, concerns, or need someone to check-in with.
While Brook Experts can’t help you pack your suitcase, they are full of ideas to ensure you have a happy and healthy trip. Head on over to the Expert Channel on the Brook App to chat travel tips & tricks.
Chat soon 💬
Reviewed by Emily Matson, MS, RDN
on February 27, 2020. Emily is a Registered Dietitian with her Master's degree in Nutrition from Bastyr University in Kenmore, WA, and is one of our Brook Experts.