Survival Tips For Traveling With Irritable Bowels
If you have ever struggled with keeping your shit together (you know diarrhea and constipation) then you may have experienced the tremendous amounts of overwhelm and frustration that comes from traveling and having to visit the john. So much so that you may have found yourself becoming a hermit and simply not leave the house at all. However there may come times where you must go out into the world and maybe even travel.
It's anxiety provoking to say the least...
I mean you are either worried where the closest bathroom will be at all times out of fear of having an accident or in extreme discomfort from the constipation that seems to get worse when traveling.
The truth is, restricting food and drinks, avoiding leaving the house and scheduling plans around your bathroom breaks is no way to live and it IS possible for you to take back control of your life and health.
These tips are for you if you are ready to live your life again without having to obsess over foods to eat that won't make things worse and wonder where the closest bathroom is.
Eat this NOT this!
First things first! FOOD!
I mean, let's be honest with eachother...
How many times have you restricted food and drinks to control your poop and pee because you had to travel, run some errands or attend a social event all to avoid embarrassment and to attempt to feel like a normal person?
You don't need to stop eating completely or in most cases resort to inflammatory "safe foods" that are really just making things worse.
A BRAT (Banana, Rice, Applesauce, Toast) diet, is old news friends, it doesn't work! And although you might feel like some of these foods are the only thing that "settle" your stomach, trust me, they are only making things worse!
Grains and dairy products are hard to digest and when you are in a flare, bringing your focus to foods that are easy to digest, rich in nutrients and are anti-inflammatory will be the only way to beat the gas, bloating and angry bowels that you so desperately want to get rid of.
When we consume healing foods, there is no need to be fearful of things getting worse.
So let's bring you some confidence back and introduce you to the foods that heal instead of harm. Here are the foods/drinks you want to enjoy while traveling to keep your tummy on track:
Steamed vegetables (avoid raw)
Fruit (in moderation)
Pumpkin, squash, sweet potato cooked
Meat (in moderation)
Honey as a sweetener
Teas: peppermint, lemon, ginger, chamomile are all easily found while out and about.
Green juice! (Not fruit juice)
Never be afraid to ask for changes to your order at a restaurant, pack snacks for the plan, train or car and don't be afraid to seek out a health food store or grocery store when you arrive at your destination to stock yourself up with foods, teas/drinks that will fill in the gaps, especially if your trip is filled with restaurants.
I never travel without my digestive enzymes (well I have before and well... lesson learned). We know travel can be stressful and stress depletes our enzymes which are responsible for breaking down our foods. If foods are not being broken down properly, they begin to ferment in the gut creating a gas build up, causing bloating, gas and other digestive issues. Yuck right?
This is an absolute non-negotiable for me.
Gin Gins: Double Strength Ginger
I'm not a good flyer. I used to be until I was flying to Halifax one summer to perform in an opera. I was a bag of nerves and I got sick to my stomach on take off. I love flying and traveling, but ever since then, my tummy does not! I get nauseous!
And you know something, I'm not a great back seat passenger in a car either, I get car sick. That is why Gin Gins Double Strength Ginger Candies are ALWAYS in my purse. These ginger lozenges are easy to pack and super helpful in taking the edge off of the rumbling tummy and nausea that can come from traveling.
Peppermint Essential Oil & Coconut Oil
It happens to the best of us...
You are traveling and have great intentions of staying away from the foods you know irritate your stomach, but almost every time, you end up in the cheese or in the bread and your gut is paying for it hard. Am I right?
The thought usually goes along the lines of "I'm not eating ANY of those foods that hurt my gut. I'm going to have a great trip." Later that day... "I'm feeling pretty good, one bite isn't going to hurt me." One bite turns into 10 and the rest is history. You are in pain.
This is typically when I whip out my coconut oil and peppermint oil on the tummy.
Apply a thin layer of coconut oil on your stomach and then 1-2 drops of peppermint essential oil. This can help to ease the bloating and gas that is leaving you feeling nine months pregnant.
Pumpkin Puree & Magnesium Citrate
POOP! It wouldn't be a survival guide without something to manage those irritable bowels. There is no doubt, traveling with diarrhea or constipation is not fun.
Diarrhea? Pumpkin puree is your new best friend. A great food with binding fiber to help bulk the stool and ease the diarrhea.
Constipation? Magnesium Citrate powder can help to calm both you and your colon, helping you to have a bowel movement and ease some of the discomfort from being so bunged up.
Imagine if you were able to go out into the world and finally feel normal, be able to enjoy and have fun again. It is absolutely possible for you when you have the support and a proper system in place.