How to Eat Healthy on the Road, in the Airport, and at the Beach

vacation food

You've already designed your perfect summer, now it's time to make sure you stick to the blueprint.

Traveling is a time to break your own rules, but completely abandoning your healthy eating habits for airport sandwiches and resort margaritas will mess with your post-vacation relaxation buzz by adding regret into the mix.

We tapped the brains of healthy food experts for their tips on how to make better food choices while you're away (which will help you feel fit and fabulous once you're back).

Here's what Clean Plates' Jared Koch, Denise Mari of Organic Avenue, and vegan chef extraordinaire, Matteo Silverman, had to say...


Founder & CEO, Clean Plates

I allow myself a little more leeway when traveling. I don't obsess, but I do try to make the best choices with whatever's available.

For me, it's all about taking a little time to be prepared.

Whether I'm traveling by car, train, bus or plane, I make sure to bring food with me that I feel good about eating—a sandwich or a salad, a pear, nuts and seeds, and dark chocolate. I also bring dried mango and drink lots of water.

I always bring breakfast foods—plain oatmeal packets and some almonds—since I find that the most challenging meal to eat healthy when I'm traveling.

I also research restaurants I want to visit that meet my criteria. If I'm going to L.A., I check out our Clean Plates guide, but for any other city I usually spend 20 to 30 minutes before I arrive finding a few options.


smartypants vitamins

Heading out on vacation? Smarty Pants gummy vitamins are a chewable, easy-to-pack way to make sure you get key nutrients—like vitamin D and omega-3s—during your travels.

Get 20 percent off and enter to win a $250 Amazon Gift Card when you order by July 10.


Founder, Organic Avenue

It all depends on where I'm headed.

For cities, I love to use to search out new vegan spots.

On the plane, I take Sea Snacks with me and I like to pack a container of organic mixed berries for some juicy freshness in the air.

In my suitcase, I'll sometimes pack Super Hemp Cereal (and pray for a milk alternative when I arrive— most places have soy), and I'll even pack some brown rice pastas, which my baby boy also loves.

At a resort, I'll scan the menu for anything with vegetables. I'm writing you this from Anguilla—and last night at the restaurant I ended up with a huge plate of grilled zucchini, eggplant, tomatoes, and mushrooms. I requested avocado, olive oil, sea salt, and a juicy island lemon. It was delicious.

Don't forget to ask for modifications: The food director was happy to crack some coconuts and fill a few bottles of fresh island coconut water for me.


Chef, CoolerCleanse, Chalk Hill Cookery

I always do my food research before I travel anywhere. I look for juice bars, health food markets, or vegetarian restaurants in my destination area.

My best friends are local farmers markets for locally grown and seasonally available fresh fruit and veggies. You can create your own salad or sandwiches, and some farmers markets have great prepared foods, too.

When I travel abroad, the local markets are where I find my lunch. Places like Mexico, Central and South America, Europe, and South East Asia have incredible outdoor markets where you can find amazing local food, both fresh and prepared, for creating your own meal. My girlfriend and I call it "Market Lunch." We have yet to go hungry on our travels!

Don't be afraid to ask the local people for places to find healthy food. They're usually more than happy to help. Though it may be challenging, don't give up. Fresh, healthy food is everywhere!


More Reading

4 great green juice recipes from CoolerCleanse

Failure to lunch: Why is bringing your lunch to work so freakin' hard

The perfect picnic—easy recipes for an inexpensive, transportable meal


Our editors independently select these products. Making a purchase through our links may earn Well+Good a commission.

Loading More Posts...