So, you’ve packed your bags, sent your itinerary to the parents, printed your ticket and you’re on your way to the airport. Well, even the most prepared traveler often forgets something. And that is learning how to eat safely whilst traveling.
Here are 5 simple rules for eating whilst on the road, no matter where you are.
Have an Emergency Back Up
This tip is especially useful for people traveling to more remote parts of the world. Even the most prepared traveler can never know when sickness can strike, meaning that you always have to have a rations pack ready in-case of emergencies. This pack should at least include energy bars, rehydration salts and water sterilization drops. You might need to tailor it to your needs, but remember it can’t have anything fresh. Many people often walk into the wild thinking they will come across a Mcdonalds, I mean aren’t they everywhere? Fortunately (depending on how you look at it), they’re not. And you don’t want to get stuck in the middle of nowhere with a bad stomach with no emergency food kit.
Each Country is Different
If you’re one of those people that travelled to India, you might like to tell people about all the dirty places you ate in and survived. Well, you might be surprised to know that every country is different and you can get sick from different bacteria. This means you need to do your homework before you get on that flight to find out what types of food to expect, how it’s cooked and what you should ask for. This is even more important for allergy sufferers. In some places you won’t even know they use peanuts for their steak sauce. This pre planning research will also build your excitement for the trip, and you might find out things about the local food you would’ve never learnt otherwise.
Avoid Eating Fruit and Vegetables that Can’t be Peeled
The simple rule is, if you can’t peel it don’t eat it. You should apply this to most fruit and vegetables you get offered on your travels, especially because most bacteria live on the outer layers. If it’s raw, the damage can be even worse if you haven’t washed the food properly. I understand it’s difficult to resist those juicy looking grapes in Thailand, or those shiny red plums in China, but trust me when I say your health is more important. If you can peel the fruit and wash it well with sanitized water, you should be ok.
Stay Well Hydrated
Though this isn’t a food tip, drinking plenty of water is an essential part of your diet whilst traveling. For those of you planning hiking trips or holidays to hot countries, drinking water could be the difference between your next activity and 2 days in the hotel room. Your body needs more water than it does food, so make sure you are filling yourself up on it. If you’re traveling in countries where clean water is not so readily available, make sure you have a water sanitizer available.
Go for Quality not Quantity
It might be tempting to go to an all you can eat buffet or ordering a three course meal, but knowing the quality of the food is very difficult. Especially if it’s your first time. Therefore, avoid these buffet places like the plague, not only can you avoid a disappointing dinner, you might also be saving yourself from food poisoning or eating something you really shouldn’t. Just ask anyone who has traveled to China, nothing is in English and the meat can be suspicious.
If you’re smart and make some notes before your travels, you should be fine. And don’t worry if you get sick either, sometimes no matter what you do you can’t avoid it. Unfortunately, it’s part of the package of traveling.