Whether it’s heading out of town for work or going on a vacation many people fear traveling while on a ketogenic diet will be difficult but I’m here to tell you it doesn’t have to be. Sure, it might be more difficult than not having to worry at all about what you put in your mouth but with some knowledge and planning it can be pretty simple.
One of the biggest tips is to plan ahead. Many times you will be faced with unhealthy choices especially if you’re traveling by plane. Snacks on the plane are typically carb loaded and airports are littered with bad choices. Prior to departure stock up on some keto-friendly snacks that you can get through security; things like pepperoni/beef sticks, nuts/seeds, parmesan crisps, cut up vegetables and if you plan on eating any of the snacks sooner rather than later things like hard boiled eggs, cheese sticks, cold cuts or pickles are great choices. Whole foods are the best choice but if you use a protein powder like American Metabolix Keto Meal then you can put a scoop of that in an empty water bottle and then add water once you’re through security. These snacks can hold you over until you can get a healthy meal. In airports you can still grab a bite you just have to be careful. Order from a fast food restaurant and get that burger without a bun or ketchup and a side salad or grab a meat and veggie dish from one of the restaurants just watch for the sauces.
When taking a road trip it’s much easier because you can pack a cooler and all the keto-friendly snacks you want. If you need some ideas about keto-friendly snacks check out the blog here.
A great way to plan ahead is to book a room that has a refrigerator and microwave. I personally do this whether I’m traveling for work or on vacation because it’s a great way to save money but I understand when you’re on vacation it might not be the best option for you. It’s typically great for work travel though. You can do just about anything with those 2 modern conveniences. These days you can buy pre-cooked meats (just watch the ingredients) that you can heat up in the microwave and frozen veggies or a salad make a perfect side and are easy to cook in your hotel room. You can do eggs in the microwave too and add cheese, meat, veggies or whatever other toppings you like. This allows you to only have to eat out at lunch most of the time. I typically plan ahead if I know my room will have these items and will pack a knife, maybe a container to cook in and a couple of baggies to store stuff that way I don’t have to buy that stuff when I arrive.
If you do intermittent fasting it works great with travel! You can eat a good meal before your departure and then you won’t have to worry about eating again for quite some time. Just be sure to drink plenty of water while traveling; I don’t know about anyone else but I tend to get dehydrated when I travel so I try to be cognizant of this.
If you are a coffee drinker keto coffee is great and super easy on the go. You can get it at the airport once you’re through security and it will generally hold you over until you can get a good meal. You can also grab some heavy whipping cream for your room and many stores will have small butters you can pick up or places like Starbucks or delis often have the small pats of butter and you can grab a few for future use.
Many times, whether the travel is for work or fun, you will be faced with an event or function that involves alcoholic beverages. If you don’t drink this is easy to avoid but if you do enjoy the occasional beverage the choices can be tough. Stick to the keto-friendly alcohols such as unflavored vodka, rum, whiskey, etc and choose a mixer like soda water. If you’re lucky enough to be at a place that has flavored waters these can be great with vodka or rum or many places now have keto-friendly hard waters to choose from. Although soda isn’t the best choice, if you’re going to partake using diet soda is the better option. Add-ins like lime or lemon are ok too. There are low carb beers too but you’ll want to be careful with those as they can be higher in carbs.
Hopefully some of these tips can be helpful on your next trip. Do you have other methods of success not mentioned here? If so, let others know what those are in the comments.