After traveling to 5 different continents and countless countries, I've had to learn how to stay healthy abroad.
When I ate healthy foods, I felt healthy, and whenever I ate junk, I felt like junk. I wanted and needed to feel my absolute best when traveling around the world.
The days I ate crap, I immediately wanted to fall into a deep sleep and cancel on all of my activities. No one wants an upset stomach and feels lethargic when they're traveling.
Eating healthy abroad is so doable, especially with most restaurants moving toward whole foods and healthier options.
I've found that healthier food is cheaper and more abundant abroad, so there really aren't any excuses to eat a bad diet.
Below are 15 ways to eat healthier while traveling:
1. Choose an Airbnb or hotel that has a fully stocked kitchen
I recommend using Airbnb before using a hotel, mainly because of Airbnb's being more affordable, as well as having a fully stocked kitchen.
Most Airbnb's will have top of the line kitchen appliances, as well as anything you'll need to create a healthy home-cooked meal. Using a hotel can be trickier because you usually only get a fridge, and that's if you're lucky.
2. Download workout apps before you go.
You can do these workouts anywhere at any time. This is perfect for anyone who is trying to save money and also wants to get a workout in abroad.
A few of my favorites are:
- 7 Minute Trainer
- 7M Fitness
3. Pack travel-friendly foods
Prepare foods before you get to the airport, especially because many airports do not have healthy foods to choose from, and if they do, they are way overpriced.
- vegetables such as carrots, celery, broccoli
- potatoes (I'm in LOVE with potatoes lately, haha!)
- fruits such as apples, bananas
- pre-made salad
- granola mix
- nuts and seeds
Related: Use Ebates to get up to 10% cash back on flights. Get $10 for signing up here.
4. Use the coffee maker to create hot water
Hot water can help make an awesome oatmeal breakfast dish or even make steamed vegetables. I've made instant oatmeal with a coffee maker and it did work in case anyone is wondering.
5. Sign up for Ibotta and get cash back on groceries, clothing, + tons more
Ibotta is perfect for the type of person who doesn't like collecting, clipping, and organizing coupons. I use it mostly for getting cash back on fruits and vegetables, but you can also get cash back on items related to cleaning, baby products, clothing, shoes, plus anything else you can think of.
Stay healthy on a budget with Ibotta. Get $10 just for signing up here.
6. Book a place that has free breakfast
Whenever I stay at a hotel or hostel, I make sure to choose a place that has free breakfast.
Free breakfast usually entails a lot of unhealthy foods, but they always have fruit, oatmeal, and tea to choose from.
You get to take as much as you like (unless stated otherwise) so eat what you want and save some fruit for later on.
7. Use Groupon to find local restaurants
Groupon will give you a huge discount at restaurants as well as many travel destinations.
8. Make sure to book your accommodations near a grocery store
I ALWAYS make sure to do this because when I haven't, I go straight to the closest restaurant and pig out on food, simply because I don't feel like walking to a store 2 miles away and then preparing food. Stay prepared and think ahead of time by booking your room near a grocery store.
9. Stay hydrated
Yeah, I know, you've heard of this tip a million times. But can you honestly say you drink enough water every day?
I know that I don't, which is why I invested in a water bottle and app to get me drinking more water.
Dehydration can lead to headaches, fatigue, feeling hungry when you're actually thirsty, and tons more.
This water bottle is motivational and will remind you to drink water.
10. Give your body the well-needed rest it deserves and lay off the booze
Alcohol has unnecessary calories that do no good for you and also leads you to make bad decisions, such as eating a bunch of junk food that will have you feeling extra crappy the next day.
Related: Healthiest Foods For A Tight Budget
11. Find a park near you and go for a walk or run.
I've even gone to gyms that would let me take a free workout class. All you have to do is sign up as a possible new member, and they give you the class for free as a trial run.
I enjoy my workout way more when I'm out at a park, with the sun beaming on the skin than in a stuffy cramped hotel gym. Do whatever you like the best.
12. Walk everywhere!
Walking is one of the easiest ways to burn off calories. It's also really easy to get in 5 miles of steps just by going on an adventure around a new city.
You also save money by not using taxis, ubers, or other forms of transportation. I also find that you get to find the coolest places by foot that you wouldn't otherwise see if you were in a car.
I got a Fitbit which really challenges me every day. This is the Fitbit I use every single day. Make sure to get the size that fits you.
13. Download the Lean and Clean guide
This guide will prepare you to get healthy in ALL areas of your life. I am so impressed with this ebook and cannot say enough good things about it.
I was expecting a simple 14-day meal plan but got so much more. You can check out what I'm raving about here.
This is also a great book to read on the plane or train because all you have to do is download it to your phone. Less stuff to carry with you is a major bonus if you're backpacking.
14. Meditate using a free app
I use Headspace to guide my meditation, but you can also use other free apps or YouTube to guide you. Meditating a simple 15 minutes a day can have drastic changes in your mind and body.
15. Wash your hands and bring sunscreen
Being healthy also means you must take care of your skin, which we often tend to neglect. I recommend bringing not only sunscreen but hand sanitizer as well, especially since you might be stuffed in a small area (such as a plane) with people who might be sick.
Even though this article is all about eating healthier while traveling, I also encourage trying out cuisines you've never tried and step out of your comfort zone. If a meal looks unhealthy, but you really want it, get it! Just try to eat healthy 80% of the time.
What do you do to remain healthy while traveling?
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