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Keeping well on holiday

Many of us are now starting to travel more, whether that’s somewhere in the British Isles, or traveling further afield.

Many of us are now starting to travel more, whether that’s somewhere in the British Isles, or traveling further afield. Holidays are a valuable part of our lives. We can relax, spend time with family, experience new things, explore and get away from the monotony of everyday life!

Some people find that going away can trigger their digestive symptoms, which can often be worrying and even a reason for some to stay at home.

So, what can we do to support our digestive health while on holiday?

Make Healthy Choices

Going on holiday can change our mindset when it comes to food and drink.

How many times have you said “I’m on holiday. I am going to eat and drink what I like”?

I really believe that it is all about balance.

It’s important to have fun and feel relaxed while you are on holiday, and to eat and drink things that you enjoy. It’s also important to remember that too much sugar, alcohol and refined foods can result in you feeling bad while away and can increase your digestive symptoms. It can also mean that when you get home, you feel like you have let yourself down and you feel a bit rubbish about it!

So, I advise trying to keep a balance while you are away. Choose a healthy side salad to go with your meal, include some steamed vegetables when you can, try to drink water between your alcoholic drinks. Choose a pudding because you really want it, not just because you can.

Support your gut bacteria

Probiotic supplements contain important beneficial bacteria which help to support our digestive health. When we are in a different environment, we are consuming different water and this can affect the bacteria in our large intestines and can result in digestive discomfort and symptoms such as constipation or loose stools.

Adding in a good quality probiotic can help to maintain our healthy bacteria, reduce digestive symptoms, IBS and the likelihood of infection. There are many different probiotics on the market but they are not all equal.

Please do email me if you have any questions about what you should buy:

Stay Hydrated

Drinking plenty of water helps us to stay regular. Dehydration results in constipation as well as low energy and tired looking skin. This is especially important if we are in a hot climate.

When we are on holiday we are out outside of our normal routine. A little extra effort is needed to make sure we drink enough water.

Try talking a refillable water bottle and keep topping it up when you can. This can also act as a visual reminder, as sometimes it’s easy to forget to drink enough. Setting an alarm on your phone to remind you to drink may also work.

Flavouring your water with citrus fruit, cucumber and mint or berries is another way to encourage yourself to drink more, and may help if you are struggling with the taste of different water.

Reduce Constipation

Many people find that when they go away, they become constipated. This can be due to lack of routine, changes in diet, increased temperatures and lack of fluids.

To make sure you remain regular follow these simple rules;

• Drink plenty of water

• Sit on the loo at around the same time each day, even if you don’t need to go!

• Include plenty of healthy fibre from fruit and vegetables

• Take probiotics

• Make sure you exercise enough

• Try a fibre complex supplement *

*Email me for more advice on this

Digestive Enzymes

When we are away from home, we tend to eat different types of foods.

As such we are more likely to get indigestion, bloating, stomach pain, reflux, and constipation.

Sometimes our digestive systems need some help to digest the foods we are eating.

I recommend taking a digestive enzyme with you on holiday. You can take one with your larger meals, or meals you feel you might struggle with.

What about alcohol?

We are more likely to drink more when we are on holiday, and even if we are having a staycation, we are more likely to increase our alcohol intake while on a break, especially when the sun is shining!

Too much alcohol can negatively affect our digestive systems. Alcohol can feed unwanted bacteria in the gut; it can cause inflammation and damage the lining of the digestive tract. It is also dehydrating as well as adding an extra strain on the liver. A healthy liver is important for digestive health and will be preoccupied by detoxifying alcohol if you drink too much.

My suggestion is to find that balance again. Enjoy a few drinks and remember to be mindful about them. Don’t drink just for the sake of it.

Ensure you are staying well hydrated and aim to drink a glass of water between each alcoholic drink.

You may decide to try something non-alcoholic, why not give one of my alcohol-free drinks a try? They are easy to make on holiday, and are also a great addition to any parties, BBQs, or social occasions you may be having over the summer.

Cucumber & mint Fizz

Serves 6

1.5ltr sparkling water

half a cucumber, sliced

10 mint leaves

1 lemon, sliced

Put all the ingredients in a large jug, chill and serve.

Sparkling lime water

Exactly as it sounds … Sparkling water with a good squeeze of fresh lime juice over ice.

Simple and refreshing – and you can guarantee a pub with have the ingredients (but likely you’ll need to remind them about the fresh lime and not cordial).

Sparkling Kombucha

Kombucha is a healthy alternative to sparkling soft drinks known for being full of naturally occurring vitamins, acids, and beneficial bacteria. You can buy it ready-made and it makes a great replacement for an alcoholic drink, and is much better for your gut!

On the 1st August I will be starting my Summer Holiday Challenge!

Learn how to stay on track with your health this summer. I will be covering 4 themes

• Eating well

• Drinking well (hydration)

• Being well (self-care)

• Staying well (habits)

I will also be giving away my eBook ‘The Summer Holiday Survival Guide’ as well as a bonus book ‘The Ultimate Holiday Eating strategy’ full of simple ways to stay healthy through the summer months.

Happy holidays!

Sarah x

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