Travel and healthy eating can be a tricky combination to pull off, especially if you’re flying internationally and are relying on airline food to meet your needs.
When you’re about to do a long haul trip, is eating something you consider before you fly, or do you generally think the food the airline provides will work for you and sustain you for the duration of the flight, and what needs to be done when you reach your destination. For some it’s straight to business meetings, others with presentations to be made soon after landing, some are picking up rental cars and driving long distances, while others have children to entertain and holidays to be had!
What state do you arrive in?
Are you mentally alert, dehydrated, exhausted, or vibrant, hydrated and ready to go? What you fuel your body with on these long haul trips has a direct impact on the state you arrive in.
It’s something that’s been front of mind, particularly these last few weeks, with flying Sydney to LA, LA to London, London to LA and just recently flying LA back to Sydney.
In flight meals are mass-produced meals made from irradiated foods that are frozen and then reconstituted. Prepared hours ahead of time, chilled or frozen, and then warmed back up in on-board convection ovens. These meals are so devoid of all nutrition that the body has to pull on its own reserves to break down and process the food, this leaves you even more tired and depleted, as if dealing with jet lag wasn’t enough!
The snacks offered between meals on our long haul flights were ice cream or cookies! On our first leg of the journey Sydney to LA breakfast (no choice) was a fruit salad bowl, orange juice and croissant, enough to send my blood sugars through the roof quickly followed by a moody crash!
Thankfully, I’ve learned from experience that to make an extra effort to prepare and take my own food when flying has had an enormous impact on my ability to cope with all the stressors related to long haul travel and minimise my jet lag.
Having flown Sydney to LA, LA to London, London to LA and LA back to Sydney all within a 3 week period, I’m pleased to say that I was only caught out once with not having prepared my own food for the flight. I did notice the difference in my recovery.
Here’s a little snap shot of what was on offer on the last leg of the trip;
On the last flight leg, here’s what I prepared at the home of our dear friends in LA to take as my own in flight dinning experience. It’s a list only, as it was too dark to take photos in flight!
- Organic chicken curry
- Organic micro green sprouts with a lemon and olive oil dressing
- Snack – raw cheese / apple
- Organic dark chocolate
Even the flight attendants were jealous!
And of course …Stand up, move and stretch every hour