Food on the Road

So I just got back from a week long business trip to Chicago. Allow me to say that doing a road trip with a potty trained 3 year old is fantastically easier than traveling with a colicky baby. Just throwing that out there. One of my biggest hurdles when traveling is the food. It tends to throw my attempts at an ideal diet back into the realms of the SAD diet we gave up a while back. (SAD = Standard American Diet) I give this trip a 5 star rating out of 10 since I had two totally “fail” experiences in resisting gluten foods.  Completely a flaw of my self control and not of available choices that a little bit of patience would have afforded me.  Traveling poses even more food problems for me now than it used to with the addition of gluten on my list of foods that it would be ideal to avoid. Previously on the list was high fructose corn syrup, highly refined/bleached white flour, MSG, Soy products/bi-products. And now, gluten.

Since eating out almost anywhere except whacky alternative places which are few, farbetween and often expensive (not to mention are often haven’s for all-things-made from soy) includes two or more of my “avoid” items it means I have to get creative. Creative for me in the past has included packing easy to prepare without a kitchen food stuff’s in a cooler to go along with us for a road trip. This is great when I can pull it off because I can get such items as raw milk and homemade cultured butter (both all but impossible finds in stores). However sometimes due to time constraints or lack of space in our car the cooler has to stay home. When choosing our lodgings a refrigerator is on my “must have” list, tied up there with Free high speed internet. Hey, we own an internet based business so the internet part really isn’t optional. Besides (cough cough) how else am I supposed to chat with all my friends that live in my laptop without internet? Or keep up with Facebook?? Or stalk great deals on craigslist??? (All said with tongue firmly planted in cheek of course)

This past trip we were fortunate enough to stay in a place that comes with a fully stocked tiny little kitchen. Huzzah! With no room for a cooler (our poor car was so loaded down it was laughable) we went shopping as soon as we arrived. Mostly for food stuff’s for the Doodlebug since she and caretakers would be operating out of the hotel while TheMan and I attended meetings and ate some meals out with the group. All natural cheese, frozen blueberries, Organic yogurt (low-fat, wasn’t able to find the full fat versions, darn those low fat dairy diet campaigns), Kefir in little individual containers (also low fat), Whole Grain Pasta, Organic Butter, all Natural/Kosher beef hot-dogs, advocadoes, Nuts and last but not least Bananas. Simple, fast and easy and customized to what the Doodlebugs likes.

In spite of having healthy-ish food at the hotel TheMan and I ended up eating less than ideal foods several of the days. After eating mostly organic, all natural, whole foods prepared at home it’s amazing the difference we feel eating “mainstream” food. Side effects may or may not include grogginess, fatigue, sluggish digestion, gas, indigestion and acid reflux. Where traveling food creativity leaves off for me personally appropriate supplementation takes over. I’ve learned the hard way by trial and error that there are certain supplements that can keep the body in balance even when eating less than ideal foods.

1) Digestive Enzymes with every meal. Bromelain can double up as an emergency anti-inflammatory/pain reliever and digestive aid all in one.

2) Probiotics. My personal favorites being Tummy Tune Up and Colostrum

3) Whatever your favorite General Immune boosting supplement is. Traveling just messes with immune systems for whatever reason. Either by constant exposure to germs and viruses that you haven’t built up an immunity to, being out of a normal routine, not drinking enough water or any other unknown factor.  My personal choices are Vit. D3 (mostly because I am personally horribly horribly deficient) Vit. C and BerryWell. Berrywell also incidentally takes care of any misc. travel related allergies that might pop up.

This poor blog has been SO neglected lately. I promise to try to post a lot more frequently although they might not all be directly food related. My life has taken a super busy turn and traditional foods don’t have the center stage they had for a while. Might be quite a bit about gardening and overall nutritional stuff though. I’m off to go have some sweet mango tea over ice. It finally warmed up enough here to enjoy a big glass of iced tea!

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