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Tips on the Road

One thing I hold pretty firm on: When I cheat, it’s a choice. I say, “Yep, I’m so having that!” What I don’t like is creating a situation where my blood sugar drops, and I become crazed. This is when I say, “I’m staving, there’s nothing to eat, so…

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Tips on the Road

Written by Dr. Kellyann Petrucci

Click below to get my Healthy Travel Food Guide. You will get an instant access to the printable guide, for free! 

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taking-paleo-on-the-road

Travel Smart: Taking Paleo on the Road

One thing I hold pretty firm on: When I cheat, it’s a choice. I say, “Yep, I’m so having that!” What I don’t like is creating a situation where my blood sugar drops, and I become crazed. This is when I say, “I’m starving, there’s nothing to eat, so move over and get out of my way, because if you don’t, not only will I eat that slice of pizza, but also your arm with it.”

Sound familiar? This is especially common when traveling. Either we’re prepared or we’re not.  And it can get really ugly if we’re not.

I remember being wiped out in LA and San Diego after a packed day of TV segments and speaking engagements. Not to mention, I was super hungry. After rushing to LAX for my red-eye flight, I realized I was in trouble in the food department — there wasn’t a morsel of food anywhere.

Most restaurants were closed, and the ones that were open had slim pickings, to say the least. My choice: I could eat a bag of Sun Chips and fill up on free beer in the club room or call it a day and wait until I was home to make bacon and eggs.

 I dug deep into my purse searching for a jerky bar, coconut chips, anything good … and there was nothing. Feeling a little crazed, I ripped open the complimentary bag of Sun Chips, scarfed them down and chugged a can of beer.   

Then, the inevitable — I fell into an instant, drugged stupor of exhaustion and icky-ness, as my stomach started to pop over my skinny jeans. I damned Zappos and their fancy, tight-fitting jeans so conveniently delivered to my door, and longed a pair of sweatpants.

Man, I wished I had decided to just fast.

But all of this could have been avoided with just a little forethought. Just a tiny bit of preparation can go a long way in helping you avoid gluten Hell on the road.

Here’s what I do now to keep myself from going wonky when traveling:

Airport-friendly Snacks

Let’s face it …  the food options at most airports are pretty terrible, and airplane food is not only junky, it’s also not very tasty. You’ll be happier and healthier if you eat well before your flight, make a plan for where you’ll eat at your destination, and pack Paleo-friendly snacks for the travel time in between. Arm yourself with a small, insulated food bag for items that need to be kept cool, and stuff non-perishables into your carry-on for snacks any time.

Here are foods that won’t send the TSA into a panic and will travel well without refrigeration.

For Your Cooler Bag  

  • sugar-free, high-quality deli meats
  • smoked salmon
  • hardboiled eggs
  • cooked chicken, cut into easily-managed pieces
  • cooked meatballs or burger patties
  • cooked sweet potatoes
  • raw veggies, cut into easily managed pieces
  • fresh fruit, cut into easily managed pieces
  • avocado or guacamole
  • olives

For Your Carry-on Bag

  • sugar-free beef jerky
  • coconut flakes
  • nuts
  • dried fruit
  • canned sardines, tuna, or salmon
  • snack bars that contain only dried fruit and nuts
  • squeeze packs of nut butter and/or coconut butter

Remember to pack plastic utensils and plenty of napkins.

If you absolutely have no time to prepare for last-minute travel, you can find Paleo-friendly snacks in many airport gift shops. Avoid the chips and candy! Instead, look for dried fruit (with no added sugar), roasted nuts (discard the peanuts in mixed nuts), and snack bars made from dried fruit and nuts like KIND healthy snacks, which are available in most airports I’ve visited.

Car- and Train-Friendly Snacks

The Emergency car cooler: A road trip (or train travel) lets you take your good Paleo habits to go. With some advance cooking and a well-stocked cooler, you’re all set for Paleo eating wherever your wanderlust takes you.

For Your Toolkit

  • small cutting board
  • paring knife
  • can opener
  • empty BPA-free storage containers
  • Ziploc bags in a variety of sizes
  • salt, pepper, and other spices in travel-size jars
  • a small sponge and dish soap
  • toothpicks

For Your Cooler

  • sugar-free, high-quality deli meats
  • smoked salmon
  • hardboiled eggs
  • cooked chicken, cut into easily-managed pieces
  • cooked meatballs or burger patties
  • cooked sweet potatoes
  • whole raw veggies
  • whole fresh fruit
  • salsa
  • baba ghanoush
  • homemade salad dressing

For Your Dry Goods Bag

  • sugar-free beef jerky
  • coconut flakes
  • nuts
  • dried fruit
  • canned sardines, tuna or salmon
  • snack bars that contain only dried fruit and nuts
  • jars of nut butter and/or coconut butter

My personal favorite travel foods are Steve’s Paleo Goods

Steve has Paleo jerky, grainless granola, dried fruit, snack kits and more. They are packaged ready for travel and are as tasty as can be. I respect working with people like Steve and his team because they are rock-solid good folks and care about quality. If you want a quality quick grab, check it out. 

Hope these tips keep you from experiencing road craze!

Keep thinking big and living bold!

-Dr. Kellyann

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