Digestive distress when traveling??!! Check out my strategies here!
Gut health and travel
I’ve traveled a LOT (especially for this introvert) over the past month and on all three trips I could be seen walking around with a brown paper grocery bag full of GROCERIES!!
I don’t travel super well, the stress wreaks havoc on my sleep and gut and at almost 38 years old, I’ve FINALLY learned how to manage it with these three simple strategies:
- Buy non-controversial foods and have them handy-I travel with staples that I know my body likes, foods that don’t bother my gut.
Yes I still go out to eat and sample fun foods, but because I don’t want my trips to be chockfull of stomach aches and digestive distress, I mostly stick with what I know works and then leave room for small meals of rich, hyper palatable foods that contain small amounts of trigger foods.
- Travel with magnesium, psyllium husk, digestive enzymes, probiotics and charcoal-If travels stresses you out, then you probably get a bit of a “fight or flight” response in your body. This changes your core body temperature and blood flow patterns so that you reduce blood flow circulation in the digestive system AND my have a lower core body temp, which negatively impacts digestive enzymes which are designed to operate at 98.6.
- Magnesium help with sleep, stress and regularity
- Psyllium keeps everything in the intestines moving to avoid the constipation cycle caused by sluggish digestion.
- Digestive enzymes help to break down the food in your body, making it easier to digest.
- Probiotics-Your travel-induced stress can kill some of your good microbes, so it’s a good idea bring your probiotics with you when you travel and keep introducing a daily dose of microbes to keep things regular and the gut microbiome strong!
- Charcoal-in case you eat something bad or controversial to your system, charcoal binds toxins and makes it easier for your body to excrete them
- Walk and move! I make a point of moving regularly every day either via exercise, walking or both! Movement is a great way to manage stress and is good for the bowels too. Since many of us either travel for work or leisure, we often find ourselves moving LESS when we travel than we would at home. This is especially true if the trip to get there requires long periods of sitting. It sort of sets us up in this pattern of non-movement. So set an alert on your phone or get your friend, partner or collegue to commit to daily movement with you! Walk, rent a bike, find a fitness class, practice some yoga, just stay moving. It will help your sleep, stress and smooth muscle of the digestive tract!
The reason why these tips work so well to keep me feeling good and vibrant when I travel is because they are imitating the pattern of my real life at home!
This is how I live to maintain good gut health and feel vibrant and mostly good in my body!
At home to care for my gut I move often! I mostly eat foods that feel good, don’t create a lot of inflammation or irritate my gut, these are my staples!
I routinely take probiotics and magnesium and I get 7-9 hours of sleep a night.
I talk with a LOT of women, especially moms that have just sort of accepted digestive discomfort as part of life.
They’ve been battling constipation and or diarrhea for months, maybe years…and it’s become their new normal.
I want you to know that this is a common problem!
So you shouldn’t feel any shame or embarrassment or stress about it.
BUT, this is also a problem that isn’t going to resolve on it’s own.
You need help because these conditions are negatively impacting your quality of life, most likely making it super difficult for your to travel.
Try my tips above and use a food journal to keep track of how your body responds to different foods. HINT-this is much easier to do when you eat SIMPLE, WHOLE FOODS and not a lot of processed food items that are an amalgam of lots of different foods.
***IF YOU'VE SUFFERED FROM DIARRHEA OR CONSTIPATION OR BOTH for 1-3 months or longer, then you are going to want to get in to see an MD or ND trained in Functional Medicine, ASAP!
Reach out to me if you have questions on that!!!
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