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Eating Healthy While Traveling (With Food Allergies)

One of the first things that people say to me when they find out I travel a lot is how do I eat? I have Celiac Disease, a nut and egg allergy. I agree it’s a lot to keep track of.

When you’re traveling as much as I do, you would think it is a nightmare on my diet and that I am constantly sick.

But you want to know what? It’s actually strides easier to follow my diet and I feel far better when on the road.

First of all, I pay attention to what I am eating a lot more because having a reaction to something is a much bigger pain in the ass when in the back woods of Nicaragua or like you’ve read, it leads to shitting your pants in Vietnam. In Thailand, I ALWAYS tell the person preparing my food that I am allergic to nuts, or whatever the possibilities are for that dish.

At home, I am comfortable and subconsciously trust that I can get myself to a hospital or toilet should I need one so I am not as strict. I actually went to the hospital last summer from eating something I was allergic to because I didn’t ask. I would have absolutely asked if I was in another country.

When traveling, I actually tell waiters about my restrictions and do a lot of research about what dishes I should and shouldn’t be able to eat. I arm myself with a ton of information and make extra smart decisions.

At home, things like Moes exist and my caution goes out the window.

Second, what I am actually eating is better for me. I rarely eat fast food abroad. Not that I eat a ton at home, but it happens.

My parents are also infamous for eating horribly and living by the motto that if it comes out of a box it must be delicious. Because of this, I eat a lot more processed foods when at home. When I touch down at home, I am usually trying to save as much money as possible as quickly as possible so I try to leech as much off my parents as possible which means processed & boxed food.

I can literally feel myself getting bloated each day when I am the US. I’m sure it’s a hormones in our food, and pesticides on our veggies thing, but I’m not going into the politics of it right now.

When I am on the road, I’m typically eating street food which usually consists of food picked that day and simple ingredients. It may be dirtier with like real dirt, but its cleaner when it comes to chemicals and processing.

Third, I don’t snack as much when traveling. I’m not laying on a couch mindlessly binge eating a bag of chips while watching Fixer Upper when I am traveling. Meals are a thing, you sit down, you eat, you leave.

I don’t have unlimited access to food at all times so I eat less and more consciously. I also don’t have unlimited funding and therefore don’t go around buying huge, lush dinners everywhere.

And finally, I am much more active while traveling. I walk everywhere, hike volcanoes, swim in the ocean, you name it, I am doing it while traveling and that always makes me feel better.

Bottom line, don’t go into travel thinking you’re going to be less healthy than at home when following a routine. It’s quite likely you’ll feel better, make healthier decisions and maybe even lose a pound or two when traipsing around the globe!

2 Responses to Eating Healthy While Traveling (With Food Allergies)

  1. Susanna October 4, 2016 at 4:25 AM #

    Great points! A lot of people associate travel/vacation with packing on the pounds, but as long as you are mindful, avoid mindless snacking, and focus on special once-in-a-lifetime treats and local goodness… you can usually get by okay and find healthy options.

  2. Sarah October 4, 2016 at 6:30 AM #

    I also am gluten free and travel! It can be worrisome in some countries where celiac isn’t well known, and they have no concept of gluten, but you’re so right about being much more careful!! I was glutened in Athens, 2 days after my travel buddy had an allergic reaction to nuts, and it was no fun to be in such a beautiful place but either in toilet or bed!! That’s been the only incident though – much more happen at home when I’m too relaxed about it!

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