Americans take over 405 million long-distance business trips every year. In other words, 1.1 million people are traveling for work every day in the U.S. That’s a lot of trips to the airport and a lot of protein bars.
If you’re trying to stay healthy despite all the business trips, good for you!
However, it helps to have a plan. That way, you can focus on eating healthy and staying on track.
Keep reading for our guide on how to eat healthy when traveling. Pack your bags and get ready for take-off with these 10 tips!
1. Stay Hydrated
Before you depart, make sure to pack an empty water bottle in your bag.
Taking a refillable water bottle with you will act as a visible reminder for you to drink more water. Staying hydrated throughout the day is as important to your health as a balanced meal. Water helps you flush toxins out of your body.
If you’re flying, you might feel a little dehydrated after your trip. Packing a water bottle will keep your body functioning properly.
Drinking water will help you feel full between meals and curb cravings.
The next time you start reaching for a chocolate bar, snatch up your water bottle instead.
For those of you who don’t like drinking water, add a little flavor. You can use water flavoring packets or travel with bags of tea to mix it up!
2. Stick to a Schedule
While you’re traveling, it’s easy for your schedule to get off the clock.
Try to maintain a meal schedule. Plan to eat when your body is usually hungry during the day. If you have to wait for clients or coworkers, have a healthy snack in between meals.
That way, you can avoid overeating before mealtime but still keep your blood sugar levels stable.
3. Pack a Snack
Our next tip for how to eat healthy when traveling: pack a snack!
Airport meals are often packed with sodium. Meanwhile, the bars and other snacks you can grab on-the-go are usually processed and full of nasty ingredients.
Instead of relying on these last-minute snacks, plan ahead.
Pack healthier snacks such as raw veggies or string cheese. You can also add nuts or whole-grain crackers to your carry-on bag. If you’re ever feeling snacky while traveling for work, you now have a healthy option within reach.
4. Plan Ahead
Once you know where you’re traveling for work, make a plan.
Research where you’re staying. Check for a healthy restaurant or a farmers market nearby. As you create a list of possible restaurants to choose from, make sure to check the menu.
Bookmark a few options for easy access before your trip. Now you know how to eat healthy while traveling and have the info you need at hand.
Knowing what you’ll eat and where can help you avoid impulsive, unhealthy meals.
If you can’t find healthy options around the hotel, research the hotel itself. Most hotels offer a continental breakfast. Instead of pastries and bread, plan for an omelet.
Most hotels don’t give you access to a kitchen. That’s okay! Instead, improve by buying veggies and eggs at a grocery store.
You can always make hard-boiled eggs with a coffee pot or snack on fruits and nuts before your next big meal.
Heading to Newstead? Check out this list of the Best Newstead Restaurants before you go!
5. Check Nutritional Labels
It’s easy to reach for the most convenient options when you’re traveling on business trips. However, it’s important to remain vigilant.
Read the nutritional information on any snacks or pre-packed meals you eat. If you’re eating out, you can ask the restaurant for the dish’s nutritional information.
Keep an eye out for meals that are heavy on the salt. Instead, prioritize healthy fats (such as olive oil) and protein. Make sure to add some leafy greens for a balanced meal!
6. Ask for Substitutions
When you’re eating out at restaurants, don’t be afraid to ask for substitutions. Push aside unhealthy sides such as fries or potatoes. Instead, ask if you can have grilled vegetables or a salad.
You can also see if the restaurant is able to prepare food using a healthier method.
For example, try to avoid fried chicken or fish. Instead, see if the chef can offer a grilled option.
7. Don’t Skip Breakfast
It’s the most important meal of the day! Unfortunately, many people skip breakfast, especially while they’re traveling.
Skipping breakfast could leave you hungry. You might end up craving convenient, junk food options later in the day. To avoid those cravings, have a breakfast that’s balanced in proteins, carbs, and healthy fats.
A balanced breakfast will set you up for success in the day ahead.
8. Shop Smart
During your trip, head to a farmers market or the local grocery store. Shopping smart can help you eat healthier options while you’re traveling for work. Plus, you’re bound to save money, too.
Look for meats, cheeses, fruits, and vegetables.
Now you can stock up on healthy snacks for your trip (and spend a little time out exploring between meetings, too).
9. Don’t Forget Protein
Plan to eat protein with every meal.
Eating proteins such as eggs, poultry, or fish will ensure you stay full. As an added bonus, the protein will help you think clearly, even while you’re traveling.
If you have a lot of long meetings ahead, don’t neglect protein beforehand. That way, you don’t have to worry about your stomach grumbling mid-meeting.
10. Avoid Empty Calories
Most Americans eat more than the daily recommendations for added sugars, saturated fats, and sodium. Unfortunately, these calories won’t help you while you’re traveling on business trips.
Try to avoid empty calories from alcohol, juice, and soda.
Instead, grab your water bottle. You can also switch it up by drinking sparkling water.
Worldwide Wellness: How to Eat Healthy When Traveling for Work
Ready for take-off? With these 10 tips, you can learn how to eat healthy when traveling for work. That way, you can stay healthy regardless of where you head to.
Enjoy your next trip!
Head over to the Travel section of our blog for more helpful tips.