How to Stay Healthy While Traveling | Avoiding the "Travel Hangover"
Have you ever returned from a vacation and felt like you need a vacation from your vacation? We’ve all been there! We expect to come back feeling refreshed and ready to jump back into our routine, but instead find ourselves feeling fatigued - almost like a travel hangover! Why is that though?
My theory is this: When we travel, whether for work or for leisure, our routine is thrown off. We’re eating different and often-times more rich foods, our day-to-day schedule has changed, and if we’ve traveled to a different time zone, our sleep schedule has changed, too! Whether you’ve driven or flown to your destination, it means you’ve been sitting on your bum for hours on end, and the result is a gross, travel-hangover.
Here’s how to avoid the travel hangover and stay healthy while you’re traveling!
pack your own food / snacks / grocery shop upon arriving to your destination
This not only helps save money (airport food is CRAZY expensive amiright?), this will also keep you eating familiar foods and ease your stomach into traveling and eating more succulent foods!
Staying hydrated is especially important during your flight or drive! Sure, it’s inconvenient to get up several times to use the restroom, but it will be beneficial overall to prevent from dehydration which can lead to fatigue, headaches, and so on.
stick with your normal sleeping-schedule
If you wake up at 6am and sleep at 10pm every night, try to stick with that as closely as possible! Sure, it’s vacation, but you’ll feel most energized on your regular routine, and it makes the transition back to your normal working routine a lot easier! This also keeps the effects of jet-lag as minimal as possible.
dealing with jetlag
Avoid jet-lag by avoiding coffee for a couple day, not taking any naps, and again, sleeping to your normal sleeping schedule. Try your best to adjust ASAP to get your circadian rhythm back on track. If you’re having difficulties sleeping in the new time zone, try taking a low-dose of melatonin, a hormone that helps to regulate your sleep cycle!
This helps prevent bloating and makes up for the LACK of movement you will do whilst driving and/or flying. Exercise also keeps your mood and energy levels regulated!
I find this is especially helpful when traveling to a different culture where you plan to eat different foods. I’ve traveled to Nicaragua multiple times and every time I have gone, nearly everyone I was traveling with got an upset stomach due to water & food, but I managed to make it out untouched every time. My secret to staying healthy was starting probiotics about a week before I embarked on the trip, throughout the duration of my trip, and the week following my return.
Probiotics can also help boost your overall immune system to help prevent illnesses like the cold and flu.
Enjoy new foods, but don’t go too crazy.
I learned this the hard way during my honeymoon. I had decided to do a whole-foods, plant-based diet 2 months leading up to my wedding, meaning I ate zero sugar, zero processed foods, no animal products, including dairy and meat, and literally only ate fruits and veggies. On our honeymoon, however, I wanted to enjoy everything… and so I did. I felt fine for a couple days, and then on the third day I started feeling a little gross. I brushed it off, because I wasn’t eating “terribly” but I was definitely splurging a lot more than what my body was used to. By the 5th day, I ended up getting so sick that I spent two full days vomiting in the bathroom. My poor body! I realized at that point, ALL of the decadent splurging wasn’t worth it! I’m sure a few splurges here and there would’ve been fine - I think what really did it for me was eating a giant piece of chocolate cake. That was the first time I had ever been sick from eating junk food, and I swore to myself I would never do that to my body again.
All that to say, enjoy the new place you’re in and try new foods, but if you’re used to eating a whole-foods, plant-based diet, don’t stray too far from that, lest you get sick and spend days throwing up like I did.
Bring your essential oils
I’m a huge proponent of natural-health through essential oils, and every time I travel, I have to bring my oils with me to keep me feeling energized and healthy! My favorite travel oils are Lavender (to help me sleep), Peppermint (for headaches and cramps), Digize (for tummy sensitivity), and Thieves (for immune support). I either bring these in little roller bottles or the full oil bottle itself. They’re small enough to fit anywhere, and they keep my luggage smelling fresh!
Guard your immune system
It’s especially easy to catch a sickness like the flu or the cold while traveling because your immune system suffers due to dehydration, poor diet, and being exposed to other illnesses. If you don’t want to catch a sickness, be sure to boost your immune system by taking a daily vitamin (I take Ritual vitamins), upping your fresh-foods intake (oranges, kale, broccoli, berries, and clove are all GREAT), use Thieves essential oil hand sanitizer or take internally, and drink Organic Green Tea! All of these things will help boost your body’s immune response!
Get $5 off your first order of Ritual vitamins here!
switch out your coffee for organic green tea or Ningxia juice
Coffee is great, and I LOVE a good cup of coffee on vacation, but the caffeine can be draining for our adrenals. Instead of drinking coffee every day, try switching in some Organic Green Tea or Ningxia juice. Not only will you still get a healthy energy boost, you’ll get a ton of antioxidants as well. If you’ve never heard of Ningxia (pronounced “Ning-Shyah”) juice, it’s essentially juice made from wolfberries and other antioxidant & mineral-rich foods. It’s named Ningxia after a province in China, who’s people lived on average well past their hundreds. The secret was their diet - particularly their consumption of wolfberries, which are particularly high in antioxidants. Ningxia juice is filled with all the goodness to keep your immune system boosted and keep you energized in the process!
You can buy Ningxia juice here! (Sign up for the wholesale membership to get 24% off!)