We are coming up on that time of year where we will plan our trips to either visit family, see friends, or just escape for a little rest and relaxation. Having a food intolerance shouldn’t hold you back from any of this, especially if it’s a gluten intolerance. Many clients will ask me what they can do when they are traveling to help avoid a reaction so, I have come up with a few tips that will help anyone enjoy their vacation while staying gluten free.
It’s important to remember that having a gluten free diet doesn’t stop you from enjoying food and eating when you get hungry, you just need to ensure you are providing your body with wholesome foods. You can still enjoy consuming healthy carbohydrates, protein, and fats but when it comes to traveling, you just need to plan ahead and find foods that can withstand the trip as well as your body.
Tip #1: Plan out Your Snack Foods Before You Begin Your Travels.
- Its best to travel with foods that you can prep into containers for easy storage and convivence with carrying.
- Try sliced apples, bananas, or oranges as they travel well and add some almond butter for extra richness.
- You might bring a homemade trail mix on your trip with your favorite mixed nuts and dried fruit.
- Consider a protein shake for those short notice, quick travel trips.
- If it is a long trip you may consider preparing a cooler to allow yourself to have a bit more variety for food items such as a homemade kale salad with cherry tomatoes, shredded chicken, and an oil of your choice to dress. You may also prepare homemade guacamole or salsa with your favorite fresh vegetables.
- Try to travel with homemade snacks rather than purchasing prepackage gluten free snacks. This way you can guarantee that you will not have a reaction since you know the exact ingredients you put into your food.
Tip #2: Choose Only Gluten Free Foods from Menus.
- Avoid chain or fast-food restaurants. Majority of the time these menus are set and there is not much wavering or customizing you can get, which could result in a gluten reaction.
- If you are unsure that a particular restaurant will have food selection that match your dietary needs, look the menu up online or call. Most places have an online menu that will allow you to peruse before dining in.
- Stick to food choices such as grilled or poached salmon, or a vegetable salad, even rotisserie chicken to ensure your meal stays gluten free.
- Traveling somewhere a bit more international? Not a problem, order gluten free dining translation cards to help minimize language barriers between you and your server to help express your dietary requirements.
Tip #3: Don’t Be Afraid to Ask Questions.
- Having an reaction to gluten during a trip must be avoided and if you are unsure about a certain food item, ASK!
- The internet is a wonderful thing, if you are reading an ingredient and you don’t know what it is, Google it. It will give you piece of mind.
- When dining at a restaurant and you find the most delicious meal on the menu, don’t be afraid to have the waiter ask the cook if certain ingredients are used.
- Always trust your gut, if you have an instinct that a certain food just might not be right to consume… its probably true.
The key to traveling gluten free is to plan ahead and stick to simple foods. It doesn’t hurt if the hotel you are staying at has a fridge or a microwave because then you know any food item you decide to bring or purchase on your trip will not perish and you can feel confident that you can enjoy your vacation and not worry about an unexpected allergic reaction.