Traveling and eating healthy does not have to be difficult. It can be a challenge, especially if you’re flying and having to navigate all of the airport rules and regulations regarding what can and cannot be taken through security. In this post, I’ll share some of the tricks I’ve used to help me stay on track with my nutrition while traveling.
You can see a full list of TSA’s allowed/prohibited list for food on their website. Any liquids need to still fall under the less than 3.4 oz. rule. What this means is you can most certainly bring liquid food items onboard as long as they’re under the 3.4 oz. rule. You can also pack any liquids you may want to bring with you in your checked baggage, just be sure to double bag those to prevent any leaks. The last thing you want is a suitcase full of coconut oil! With that being said, here are some easy wins to bring on the flight with you:
- Wholly Guacamole Minis
- Beef jerky/beef sticks – Epic, Krave, and Chef’s Cut are three of my favorite.
- Hard-boiled eggs (in clear container)
- Vegetables (in baggies)
- Dark Chocolate
- Paleo nut-free granola
- Nut-free energy bars
- Seeds and dry fruits
- Seed crackers
Of course, any dry food is always acceptable. Get creative! With your liquids, always try to keep them in a spill-proof container that also has the volume size stamped somewhere on the package. It will create less hassle for you in the long run.
If you’re going to be in the car for the long haul a small to medium-sized cooler will be your best friend. You can stock up with any of the foods mentioned above and have meals and snacks ready to go without having to hit a drive through. I like to also bring my own salad dressing, like the vinaigrette dressing used in my Apple Cranberry Spinach Salad. I will mix up a batch of this homemade dressing and store it in a mason jar. Then, if you run out of food options in your cooler, you can always order a salad without dressing and instead use your own!
Research your destination online ahead of time and look for Paleo/gluten-free friendly restaurants within your destination area. I search for farm-to-table restaurants using Yelp or other trip review sites. I will also search for gluten-free or organic restaurants. You’ll be surprised at the amount of information you can find ahead of time so there’s no last minute guessing once you arrive. I will also check out local grocers in the area that carry organic, whole foods.
My family typically likes to stick with vacation home rentals. I LOVE scouring VRBO for fun vacation rentals! By renting a house you’ll most likely have access to a full kitchen and refrigerator, making it much easier to keep good, wholesome food on hand. I know, I know, who wants to cook on vacation, right? But you don’t have to! Just keep some healthy snacks on hand to keep you from loading up at the local convenience store. I personally don’t mind cooking on vacation, especially if it’s just my husband and I traveling.
Of course, there’s always the argument that vacation is all about living it up! I’ve been there, I’ve done it, but for me throwing my nutrition to the wind for a lengthy vacation usually results in me feeling like absolute crud once I get home. Try sticking to the 80/20 rule, 80% on target and 20% splurging. You’ll feel much better at the end of your trip!
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Jennifer is the recipe developer and food photographer behind Wanderlust and Wellness since 2016. She creates easy, approachable gluten-free recipes for the everyday home cook; because cooking gluten-free doesn’t mean food has to be complicated or tasteless.