Travelling can be a rewarding and relaxing experience, but if you’re dealing with persistent gut issues like IBS or food sensitivities, it can also be a source of anxiety! If you’re planning on taking a trip this summer, here are a few tips to help keep your sensitive gut in check.
1. Leave your work at work.
Stress can be a major trigger for digestive symptoms, so it’s important to take time to unwind from the stresses of work or a hectic home life. Try not to bring any work on your holiday and disconnect from your email and other potential distractions. Getting in some rest and relaxation may help calm your symptoms!
2. Plan ahead and leave time.
Rushing to the airport and worrying that you’re going to miss your flight isn’t going to do your gut any favours. Make sure you leave plenty of time to get to the airport, check-in and make it to your gate. You can also bring some healthy food from home, to help ensure you’re not left guessing at what to eat in the airport right before getting on a plane. Try learning a bit about sugars called FODMAPs so you can choose snacks that are likely to be easy on your digestive system.
If you’ll be taking a longer flight, consider booking an aisle seat so that you don’t have to worry about disturbing your seat-mates if you need to pay a few visits to the restroom.
If you’re planning to travel by car, don’t be too worried about your schedule! Leave time for pitstops and try not to stress about being at a certain place at a certain time.
3. Don’t feel guilty for sticking to what you know.
Many people love experimenting with different foods on vacation, but if you have persistent digestive issues, don’t feel guilty for sticking to foods you know you tolerate well. The goal is to have the best holiday for you, and that may look a little different from your travel companion’s ideal trip.
4. Try getting out and doing new things.
Lying on the beach can be a wonderful break, but some people have difficulty leaving behind their daily anxieties this way. If you find yourself looping over your at-home worries, try getting out and doing something new! Researchers are continuing to find that mental and gut wellness are closely connected. We also know that novel experiences can cause the release of feel-good hormones in the brain. Add in a dose of light activity and it can be a major mood and gut boost.
5. Talk to your doctor.
Finally, if you’re worried that your trip may be disrupted by emergency trips to the toilet, talk to your doctor. They may be able to advise you on measures to take if you’re struggling with IBS or other digestive symptoms during your trip.
AIRE is a pocket-sized breath analysis device. It helps people with chronic digestive issues determine the foods that work best with their digestive system. To learn more about AIRE, visit www.foodmarble.com.