6 Foods to Keep Your Gut Happy While Traveling

Jet lag? More like “jet belly”… Casually termed by flight attendants, jet belly describes the unpleasant, yet all-too-common symptoms of a heavy, bloated stomach travelers encounter when flying. With flying being the gateway to enjoyable and unforgettable experiences, combat against the unpleasant belly bloat with these travel foods!

6 Foods to Keep Your Gut Happy While Traveling (And Those Won’t)

Before hopping on the flight, consuming a light pre-flight meal is your best bet and may look something like this:

1. Your Pre-F(light) Meal

Although you know which foods your body handles and digests the best, a lean protein is encouraged to keep you feeling satisfied for your trip. So skip on that large meat pepperoni pizza and resort to a lean chicken salad or turkey wrap prepared at home or often found conveniently at the airport. Also make sure the body is hydrated before the flight by drinking at least one glass of water and 64-ounces per day leading up to the trip. 

Keep your stomach healthy (and happy) when flying with these travel foods:

2. Water

Water, water, water. Did we mention water? Related to increased altitude and decreased humidity, water is significantly stressed to combat against not only dehydration, but constipation and jetlag. And while it may cause recurring bathroom breaks, moving and keeping active can reduce uncomfortable belly bloat. Drinking 8-ounces of water each hour each can lessen the risk of dehydration and its unpleasant symptoms of altered blood pressures, migraines, lethargy, confusion, nausea, and anxiety.

3. Water-Rich Foods

Keep hydrated and filled by enjoying some water-rich foods, including cucumbers, watermelon, berries, pineapple, oranges, and celery. And not to mention, the vitamin C supplied from most of the water-rich food options can boost immunity to keep your whole body happy and healthy for your trip!

4. Herbal Teas

Skip the jitter-provoking caffeinated coffee and sip on herbal tea, as they are naturally decaffeinated and can keep you hydrated on a lengthy trip. But along with soothing the stomach, chamomile and lavender teas reduce anxiety if experiencing those flight butterflies!

5. Greek Yogurt

Greek yogurt is rich in protein and supplies gut-benefitting probiotics, having the ability to keep hunger at bay while regulating bowels. So not only will you be eating healthy while traveling, but keep the gut happy!

6. Prepackaged Snack Mixes

Rather than munching on those salty nut and pretzel freebies on the plane, pack prepackaged snack mixes in individual packets. Unsalted nuts and seeds, beef jerky, dried fruits, and cereals are safe options while traveling. 

And avoid these foods and drinks:

7. Sodium-Packed Snacks

As mentioned right above, chips and other salty snacks are generally packed for long trips, though they tend to pack a heavy salt content that may cause fluid retention during a long flight.

8. Beans

Coined the “musical fruit” for much reason, leave the melodies to your headphones… Nonetheless, the tight space surrounded by a large group of people may not be the most ideal area to experience such unpleasant gas and bloat.

9. Cruciferous Veggies

Speaking of gas… Although veggies are generally not placed in the “avoid” category, cruciferous veggies, such as broccoli and cauliflower, may cause bloating and gas during your flight. Go for a tamer veggie and starch options, including celery, salad greens, or a sweet potato.

10. Alcohol

Whether to start the party or take the “edge off” of flying, ordering a beer or glass of wine is common when flying. But avoiding alcohol may be a good idea during a flight to prevent dehydration and unpleasant consequences when landing. (A headache is not the most memorable way to kickoff vacay…) 

11. Fizzy Drinks

Though its commonly agreed the fizz of seltzer water, soft drinks, and champagne sets the mood for a soothing flight, going for carbonated drinks can lead to disagreeable gas.

12. Fried Foods

Fried foods are also high-fat foods, which tend to take longer to digest compared to others. And in addition to their potential to instigate indigestion, fried foods are generally filled with sodium and exacerbate fluid retention. 

13. Sugar-Free Gum

Not only can chewing on gum be an annoyance to the passenger next to you, but may cause belly bloat and gas related to its artificial sweetener content. If trying to rid of that airplane breath after a nap, pop in a mint or pack disposable toothbrushes and portable mouthwash mists.