Bariatric Travel Tips from an Alumni Member
Traveling for work or pleasure, air or car, these tips will help you stay bariatric friendly
Updated June 2021: Tis the season for Bariatric travel tips! Here is an image of one of my personal tips for car travel with a family. My kids are younger so adapt for your family!
In the closed Facebook group one Bariatric Food Coach member ask for bariatric travel tips:
I’m flying across the country. Meetings all day, company lunches and dinners. Any tips?
Several members travel quite a bit and I knew one alumni member in particular would have great information for her. Here’s her response!
Last Fall I stayed at a resort in Arizona for a conference and had no place close to get food.
First, when you register, indicate that you are gluten free. I found that if I did that, I had a better chance of getting less carbs on my plate. They may give you Gluten Free bread options which are high in carbs but most likely, I end up getting a salad with a protein or a protein and a vegetable.
I always pack some foods that are easy to travel with. Individual pouches of flavored tuna and chicken, string cheese, protein bars or shakes. I also took liquid crystal light, in the little squirt bottles.
There are always bottles or pitchers of water and this helps me when I’m craving something sweet in the afternoon. I was able to take all of that in my carry-on on the plane. (Tip from Steph: take your water bottle empty through security and then fill it at a water fountain as soon as you are through. Save money and stay hydrated – flight travel is dehydrating with re-circulating air.)
When I took my Arizona trip, I took an Uber to a grocery store and stocked up on boiled eggs, cottage cheese, Quest protein chips, turkey sticks and lunch meat. I did not have a microwave in my room so I had to get food I did not need to heat up.
A few weeks ago I went to D.C. and I shipped some non perishables like I mentioned above. Don’t forget salt, pepper, Truvia or anything like that that you might need. I called the hotel and they told me that they had a Keurig in the room. I included my fave decaf K cups and individual 1/2 and 1/2 packages in my box that I shipped.
I got lucky in DC because there was a grocery store about a block away from my hotel. I walked over there for cold stuff once I got there. (Added in 2021, when grocery delivery changed a lot of things!)
I also ended up buying a small insulated lunch sack and cold pack. I took my cold protein during the day and at the provided lunches, I ate it along with a salad that was provided.
When I travel in state and I only have to drive a few hours, I prep food and pack it into individual containers. I freeze it and then pack it on ice to take with me. I stay in a hotel that has a kitchenette and I take enough to take my lunch with me and have for breakfast and dinner.
Another option is to go to a grocery store once I get there. I’ve done that before and got a bag of salad, dressing and a rotisserie chicken. Riced cauliflower in steam bags or other non starchy veggies are also good options. It’s cheaper than buying a deli salad.
I usually try to stay at Homes 2 Suites. They have a kitchenette with a bigger refrigerator and microwave. You can also check out an electric skillet at the front desk for free! When you stay for a week at a time it really makes staying on track so much easier!!!
I know it can be tricky to stay on track on your own turf let alone when you are away. It can sometimes feel like you have very few options. I hope some of this is helpful. Good luck on your trip!