Healthy Travel Tips (With Children)

Jun 20, 2023


This time last week we were savoring our last day in tropical paradise. We took a week break from our currently chilly SA farm life, exploring far North Queensland. We soaked up the sunshine, embraced quality family time together and were so grateful to give our interstate besties a big squeeze.

When we head away on holidays, my ultimate aim is to feel relaxed. So I do let slide some health practises that I follow at home and I enjoy indulging in delicious foods and drinks, especially when it's part of a local experience. But I also want to continue to feel my best, so the Naturopath in me cant help but continue to draw from my wellness toolkit along the way. 

Here's some things I did to support myself and my girls (currently 16 months and 4 years) while we were away.

1) Get Prepped

While packing our clothes bags is certainly not my thing (yes I was literally sitting on top of the case to get the zip done up), prepping foods and supplements for our trip is up my ally.

The day before our flight, I used what we had left in the fridge to whip up a frittata and set half aside to pack to enjoy on our flight for brekkie the following morning. The other half I froze so we would have something to enjoy the morning after our (late) arrival home. This turned out to be so helpful as we were craving home cooked food and the girls asked for broccoli for brekkie to go alongside. Luckily I had some frozen organic broccoli to cook up for our meals amongst unpacking our bags and washing duties.

Cut up fruit and nuts were other snacks I packed for the plane ride. I also packed some whole food snack bars (with ingredients like dates and nuts), just incase we were stuck hungry along our travels and I even squeezed in some tins of 'Good Fish' Tuna and Sardines for quick meals in between fresh cook ups and eating out.

As for supplements, I kept it simple with our personal probiotics for keeping our gut healthy while eating out more; digestive enzymes for myself when eating out; seaweed* caps for iodine as I thought we might be hopping in some chlorinated pools, beef liver* for detox savvy choline & b vitamins and food form vitamin C* for antioxidants and immune support. For the girls, these get sprinkled into their food or taken in water.

I left our cod liver oil behind as I knew we'd be eating more fish, but I did manage to also fit into our bags a super greens* and collagen blend for added nutrition amongst eating out and a bone broth powder to add to boiling water for nourishing cuppas and to sprinkle over home cooked meals.

*If you want to see what brands I personally use and recommend, check them out here.

Electromagnetic frequencies are high in airports and flying, so I took along our EMF shielding blanket to place over Elke in her pram and for sleeping in our accommodations with wi-fi. Next time, I plan to also invest in the EMF shielding hats. If you're interested in getting your own, se code BABY for a special price over here.

Tea tree essential oil for was included as a first aid antiseptic and lavender essential oil to support our sleep time. What I wish I remembered to pack was some ginger essential oil and Nux Vom homeopathic for car sickness, as little Elke struggled with all the windy roads. Noted for next time. 

2) Foodie Tips 

When we book accommodation (and bot holidaying in our own caravan), having a kitchenette is a must for us. I choose cabins, apartments or airbnb's that have cooking facilities so we can whip up our own home cooked meals when we choose.

One of the first stops after arriving, picking up our hire car (and grounding our feet on the grass), was to stock up on basic fresh foods like eggs, fruits, nuts, organic oats & rice, coconut yoghurt and veggies that we could use for at least starting the day with a decent home cooked meal. My dessert was sorted with dark choccoie & herbal teas too.

I used the stainless steel containers that I packed our plane food in, for boiled eggs and veggie sticks and cut up fruit for the girls mid morning snacks on the days we left early and they weren't hungry enough to eat before we hit the road.  I also had the packaged snack bars up my sleeve if needed for arvo snacks too. These were actually helpful for me too, because breastfeeding a teething toddler requires calories! 

My friend Diana (who created the nourishing meals within Thriving Bubba) gifted us some of her local homegrown Sambung greens, sweet cranberry hibiscus and Okinawa leaves which we enjoyed alongside the tinned fish along our travels. I also used some of her gifted homegrown fresh turmeric to fry alongside eggs and sautéed baby spinach and grate into rice for a gourmet brekkie. 

When we planned where we go each day, I look for health conscious places when possible, like Mungalli Biodynamic dairy cafe in the picturesque rolling hills of the Milla Milla area. Its nice to support businesses that are caring for the health of the soil, animals and ultimately us. 

3) Navigating Eating Out Healthily With Little Ones

But yes, there were several meals we did eat out for along the way, so I adopted some ways to help the girls get in the best nutrition possible for these times.

Firstly, I ordered something decent sized for myself and I shared this with at least Elke (16 months) but sometimes also for Amelia (4 years). Majority of the time this was the fish of the day which I asked for grilled or (very mild) curry with either cooked vegetables or salad (if it was salad I made sure cucumber was included, as this is a favourite for my girls). Sometimes the kids menu looked ok for miss 4, so in that case I asked for the kids fish to be grilled and asked for a salad or some broccoli to be added to the plate. Yes, there were some meals where chips were eaten, but we encouraged the veggies and protein first. If roast potatoes were listed on the menu, I swapped the chips out for a side of these instead. 

Keeping Elke entertained was the most challenging when dining out, as she had two lots of teeth come through while we were away and certainly times of feeling emotional and impatient. I kept her out of the high chair until our meal arrived, when she would happily sit and eat and we could all enjoy eating together stress free. Before this, I'd ask for a cup of crushed ice for her to play with (remember it was warm where we were holidaying), otherwise they both loved colouring in activities while we waited. Note, we personally prefer not to give our girls screen time when out, so that's not an option for us. 

There was one meal hubby ordered himself a strawberry thick shake (insert eyes popping out of head), and of course miss 4 wanted a few sips of that. Otherwise sparkling mineral water with some lemon was as fancy as it got for drinks for the girls.  We avoid juice (and of course soft drink) as they are a major source of fructose and cause blood sugar roller coasters among other health issues.

I on the other hand enjoyed some beetroot and greens veggie juices for liver support amongst some piccolo's, a few red wines and in the last couple of days, I lashed out with a couple of cocktail treats around our airbnb pool (my friend created a espresso martini but with a dash of coconut cream which was delish). Yes, we had lots of water to keep us hydrated too- on that note we always buy bulk spring water to keep refilling our bottles with each day and avoid spending a small fortune on bottled water. 

4) Move Baby Move

We had quite a bit of diving as we explored the gems of far north queensland, so I made sure we stopped regularly along the way for movement. We enjoyed nature walks in the rainforests and national parks, to waterholes, creeks and falls, barefoot beach walks and just stopping to stretch our legs and take in the stunning views of the Atherton Tablelands. The big swings at Skybury cafe were a big hit with our girls too and we could have spent days exploring Davies Creek National Park.

Once we had the airbnb with friends, us Mumma's worked out to pilates on the big screen and took the opportunity to go for brisk morning walks (oh the difference it makes when you can walk fast without little ones at your feet). 

 5) Get The Light Right 

 Getting the lighting right is something I just cant ignore nowadays. When I do this, my energy and moods are brighter during the day and I find I drift off to sleep much easier at night. Travelling can pose some challenges with more blue light exposure, so while I forgot my blue blocking glasses, I made sure I packed a couple of our fav red and orange reading lamps to use for night time lighting and I made sure my eye mask was packed to block out any device or street lighting in or near or accomodation. 

As always, I see the sun without sunglasses and sunscreen (more on that topic in this episode) and I embraced morning sunrises and walks for setting up a healthy circadian rhythm (think sleep, moods and overall hormone health). I'm asked often, so if you too are after some options for healthy sun protection (from within and topically), find my tips in Thriving Bubba.

 Prepare, Pack & 

Maintaining health while on the road, in the air or staying away from home does take some preparation. But being planned and knowing what to focus your energy on can help maintain your health without the stress. Taking some key supplements, protecting yourself from EMF's, adding in wholefods and /or home cooking where you can, add movement to your day and taking in the right forms of light will help set you up for a healthy happy holiday.

Do you have any tips to add? I'd love to hear them across on my @glowingmumma.thrivingbubba instagram. See you there!

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