Travelling is fun, but it is also a challenge for most travellers, when it comes to healthy eating. Travelling by plane or train is a comfortable and relaxed way to get to your destination. Finding nutritious foods at the airport or at the station can be challenging if you like to stick to your healthy diet.
Many airports already provide one or two outlets where light meals are offered but the majority of food outlets are still fast-food restaurants, coffee shops, and stores where sweets and unhealthy snacks are sold. Not choosing the sugary snacks and high calorie fast food meals demands some will power and convincing, especially when travelling with young kids.
This list with tips explains how you can easily change bad habits and opt for healthy and sustainable choices while waiting at the airport or station and during travels.
1. Get food ready before travelling
Holidays are usually planned in advance. This means that you have time to shop before starting your trip. You can not only control what you buy but you will also spend less as the local grocery store is much cheaper compared to outlets where travellers are targeted. Besides saving money, your own preparations will always be more flavoursome compared to the tasteless snacks that are available while waiting for your flight or train.
Be aware to keep your food in your carry-on trolley or in a cooler box for longer trips. Don’t forget that only small portions of liquid-like foods such as dressings, dips, and sauces are allowed past security in airports and stations.
2. Food that travels
Not all food is great to take on a trip. Thinking about what you can take on a picnic is a great start and adjusting the portions is also important to limit extra luggage. Choose food that is nutritious, diverse, well balanced, not bulky, and travel friendly. Use convenient meal containers or take Ziploc bags which are also great to pack your meals for travelling.
3. Getting to a restaurant anyway?
Some don’t like to prepare food or take an extra little bag which is understandable. Restaurants will always be the other option, but choosing them wisely, and ordering food well is the key! Avoid fast food chains if possible and select healthy options. Fried foods and sweets are a no go, but foods with fibre, healthy carbs and healthy fats are good choices instead.
Be aware that prepacked food might have multiple servings which immediately doubles or triples your food intake without realising.
We usually need to be ahead of time at the airport or station to check in and pass security. Once all the necessary things are done, there is still lots of time before boarding, meaning you have time to relax, and take your time to eat slowly. The feeling of being full after eating, kicks in only 15 minutes after finishing your meal. Eating slowly, might result in the long term, to eating less.
If you are in a rush anyway, bring the food on the plane or the train and enjoy it during the trip, it will always be better than what is available on board.
5. Drink water
Drink plenty before travelling, especially when taking a long-haul flight where humidity is low in the cabin. Most airports let you fill up your water bottle for free. Besides hydrating your body, water is also good against unhealthy cravings.
Keep drinking regularly during your flight and general travels as it will keep your energy levels stable, your skin will stay shiny and bright and you can enjoy the holiday straight away upon arriving.
6. Some easy recipes to take when travelling
Not everyone has a passion for cooking but you don’t have to be a chef to make an easy travel snack.
- Hummus is quick to make and contains proteins and fibre. This recipe can be adjusted in many ways with the addition of bell peppers or beetroot. Pack freshly cut vegetable sticks and your first healthy snack is ready!
- A pasta salad is easy to make and a crowd pleaser for the entire family! Extra cherry tomatoes and olives make it refreshingly delicious and meat lovers can also add slices of cooked chicken or beef to make it a full meal.
- Fresh spring rolls are the best when homemade. The fresh vegetables are all high in water which help to stay hydrated with a delicious snack.
- Never overlook a delicious fruit salad. You might want to pimp it with some cheese to make it special.
Nuts and dried fruits are always a good choice and easy to carry along. Moderation is required!
Salman Zafar is an ecopreneur, consultant, advisor, speaker and journalist with expertise in waste management, waste-to-energy, renewable energy, environment protection, conservation and sustainable development. His geographical areas of focus include Asia, Middle East, Africa and Europe. Salman is the Founder of EcoMENA, a popular voluntary organization based in Qatar. He is also the Founder and CEO of BioEnergy Consult, a reputed consulting firm active in biomass, waste-to-energy and waste management segments.
Salman is a professional environmental writer with more than 350 popular articles to his credit. He is proactively engaged in creating mass environmental awareness in different parts of the world.
Salman Zafar can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com