Hopefully you will soon be heading off on your long-awaited and well-earned Summer holidays. If your journey involves a flight and is more than 2 hours long you will be feeling a little peckish en route (or is it just me that needs food every 2 hours?!) This is where you can get your trip off to a great start by giving it a little thought beforehand. If not, you may well end up eating some of the awful, highly processed, fatty and stodgy food on offer on many flights. This is the worst possible start to any holiday and will only leave you feeling bloated, sluggish and tired.
So here are a few of my tips to get your holiday off to the perfect start.
Before you leave home……. make yourself a lunchbox!
I know, this seems a bit OTT however believe me when you have done this once and you have seen the difference it makes you won’t look back and it will become as important as packing your bags! Foods to avoid are rich carbs like bread, rice, pasta and noodles, especially on long flights. Reducing your carbohydrate intake will reduce fluid retention and bloating. Filled homemade wraps are an excellent healthy option as is a salad made up with say smoked salmon or cooked chicken, cucumber, tomatoes, grapes, avocado, roasted vegetables and / or some (undressed) salad leaves. The Butternut Squash Quinoa & Goats Cheese salad from one of my previous posts would be ideal – the photo above is what I brought on a recent 4 hour flight including this salad and it really hit the spot. What’s more, I didn’t arrive ‘hangry’ !
Snacks…crackers, cheese, fruit, energy bars, unsalted nuts* are great. Avoid snacking on sweets, chocolate, biscuits as these will wreak havoc with your blood sugar levels, leaving you feeling tired, agitated and hungry.
On the flight……go easy easy on the alcohol as it will contribute to dehydration which is one the most common reasons our gut and body feels poorly after a flight particularly a long flight. If you really want to have a drink, make sure you drink extra water. For every hour of flying you should drink at least 250ml of water. Don’t worry about having to get up to go to the toilet – it is actually important particularly on a long-haul flight to move regularly to help avoid the risk of deep vein thrombosis (DVT).
At the airport….there are now good healthy food outlets in many airports so if you are having a meal before you fly opt for a light meal consisting of plenty of vegetables and or salad, and some lean protein and avoid deep-fried and fatty foods.
One last tip – give yourself plenty of time to get to the airport so you can relax – your holiday starts here!
Believe it or not the secret to successful flying / travelling is to drink more fluids, eat less food and sleep.
*Before eating nuts on a flight just be careful that there isn’t anyone around you with a nut allergy.