When starting your low carb life, it’s really important to be able to still go away, travel, have fun and stick to your low carb goals. After all, holidays are meant to be relaxing!
So to help you get prepared, I’ve listed my 7 top tips for eating low carb while travelling.
Try to be prepared with low carb travel snacks whilst you're travelling by car or plane - it’ll stop you from being tempted by the highly processed sugary foods that are available at the service station or airport (remember those things?!). Pack some salted nuts, sugar-free dark chocolate, beef jerky, maybe even some chopped up veggies in a ziplock bag - even some of our Three Seed Bread or some ham or smoked salmon. There’s literally no need to be swayed by crappy servo food or a sugary muffin on a domestic flight.
If you find yourself stopping off at the service station for a quick bite, and you don't have anything pre-packed like tinned tuna, nuts or veggies (and let’s be honest, who does?), then my top choices would be a naked burger (minus the bun), or a double hotdog (just eat the middle), or even grilled Oporto chicken (or similar) with a salad or veg. These options might not be perfect, but they are low carb and will get you through the journey with a good protein hit!
Does your accommodation have a fridge or a kitchen? If yes, great! Find a local shop nearby and stock up. For example, load your fridge with low carb granola ingredients such as coconut, seeds and nuts, a tub of Greek yoghurt, full fat cows milk, or almond milk if you need a lactose free option, cheese, ham and berries. Supplement with tinned fish, nuts, beef jerky and no sugar nut butters. This way you will have some additional items to give you quick breakfast, snack and lunch options.
If you don't have a kitchen or fridge and are relying on eating out for most meals, then try to look at the menus in advance, to plan your choices. For example, if you're eating out for breakfast, look for omelettes and ask for no bread, or eggs, bacon and avocado with no toast. Opt for a full fat cows milk latte with no added sugar and avoid the pancakes and muffins. When eating out at lunch and dinner, again you're looking for protein-based meals such as steak, sustainable grilled fish and seafood, hold the chips, double the salads, and look for lamb or chicken salads. Even ask for your burger in a lettuce wrap minus the fries!
Opt-out of desserts, but perhaps indulge in some cheese after dinner, minus the crackers.
Different from stocking up with low carb snacks, we’re talking about preparing some basic meals here. So, if it's possible, do some pre-preparing in advance. Perhaps you can make Dr Peter Bruckner’s Low Carb Muesli and take it in a storage container for a healthy and convenient breakfast option? Or pre-prepare one of our curry recipes, to keep in your bar fridge and pop in the microwave for a nutritious low carb evening meal. Doing a little prep work in the beginning can really be the difference between sticking to your goals, or tossing them out the window.
Some of you may still want to enjoy a drink while away and on your low carb journey. Avoid beer as it’s high in carbohydrates, at 13 grams per glass. White spirits like vodka or gin with soda and a wedge of lime contain zero carbs and are a good choice. Dry white and red wines are also low in carbs. Just be mindful to avoid cocktails as their mixers are very high in sugars.
In my experience, clients who go on holiday sometimes fall off the wagon. Then they feel guilty, think it's too hard, give up, and binge for the rest of the trip.
But the thing is, if you do fall off the wagon, that’s okay! Just because you’ve had a slip-up, you don’t need to totally abandon your low carb lifestyle approach.
Just acknowledge where things came undone and aim to get back on track with your next meal. We’re not perfect, we’re human, and you shouldn’t feel guilty for enjoying yourself on a holiday.
Hungry for more tips? Our Defeat Diabetes Program has a stack of them, as well as videos, cooking demos, recipe planners and more.
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