As a travel agent and online health coach, I take pride in having my gluten free cake (literally), and eating it too. A lot of people think that travel and health are mutually exclusive. Well registered dietitian nutritionist (RDNs), and founder of Tovita Nutrition, Leah Silberman, is here to blow your mind and tell you that it is totally POSSIBLE to exercise and eat healthy while exploring the world.
1) What snacks do you take on the plane?
It depends on how long the flight is. If it’s a short trip, 3 hours or less, I like to eat Enlightened Bean Crisps because they have lots of fiber, and hold me over for a substantial amount of time. If it’s longer than 3 hours, I’ll usually grab a turkey sandwich with avocado on whole grain bread because that will fill me up, and keep me from grabbing chips and pretzels, which add up.
2) How much of your health is attributed to diet vs. exercise?
It’s hard to quantify how much of your overall health is attributed to diet vs. exercise. They are both very important to maintain and achieve optimal health. When it comes to weight loss, however, diet is the major player, and exercise tends to take a backseat. You can go to the gym 7 days/week, but if your diet is poor, it won’t be surprising if you’re not losing weight.
3) What are some tips you have On staying healthy while traveling?
Make sure to keep up with meal times. Don’t skip meals, and bring a snack with you if you know you might not be able to eat within a 5 hour time span. Set yourself up for success and be prepared- bring snacks, stay hydrated, and don’t skip meals.
4) If i’m going away and want to lose weight before a big trip, Describe the diet you would prescribe for that patient.
Each client is different, with different health histories, goals, ages, etc., so each weight loss plan looks different. Some general guidelines tend to be: increasing fiber from whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and beans/legumes, eating sources of lean protein like wild fish or pastured eggs, and consuming healthy fats like nuts, seeds, and avocados. Of course all of this is important to consume in proper portion sizes. I always tell clients to combine a source of protein + fiber at meals and snacks to help keep them full and satiated until their next meal.
5) Explain what is the most important point to remember in nutrition when traveling.
Moderation is key. Whole foods are key. And remember, it's just food!
6) How much water should an individual consumer per day?
I like to say aim for a minimum of 2 liters, but more if possible! If you are an athlete, you’ll likely need more depending on your exercise regimen.
7) being a trained and licensed dietitian, what are your thoughts on the craze and fall of some social media “wellness gurus”; how do you feel it impacts the well-being of people following along?
On one account, I think it’s great to have so many people in the health and wellness space. It means that people care about their health, their bodies, and the quality of their lives. It means that people value good nutrition and are spreading the important message of prevention.
On the other hand, it also means that there’s more room for wacky health myths like, “fruit rots in your stomach” example to float around. There are more instances of people taking various unregulated pills and vitamins to mitigate health conditions, which often have negative side effects. It is important to seek advice from verified health professionals, and that goes across the board! Someone who has a passion for skin care (myself included!) may be a great resource for learning about new products, but they probably shouldn’t be recommending your eczema regimen. The same applies to nutrition.
8) Can you talk about how taking care of your body now can impact you when you're older?
The aging process starts as early as your late teens, and certainly takes place by the time you’re in your 20’s! Often people in their 20’s and 30’s can’t even process the fact that they’re aging, let alone know how to manage it decades before they feel its’ effects. However, it’s extremely important to think ahead! Your body is made of billions of tiny cells that have lifespans, and they are impacted by the food you eat. Eating a diet high in fruits, vegetables, herbs, spices, healthy fats, and antioxidants are going to help to slow the aging process, and mitigate age-related chronic disease. Think arthritis, joint pain, heart disease, alzheimers, etc. Contrastingly, a diet loaded with processed foods, sodium, unhealthy fats and synthetic ingredients may ultimately catalyze mutations or expedite the onset of conditions in our genes, like heart disease or diabetes.
9) What’s one of the wackiest nutrition myths you’ve heard of?
That fruit can rot in your stomach. The minute fruit enters your mouth, digestion begins to take place! By the time it hits the acidic pH of your stomach, it’s already an entirely different substance - partially broken down and heading into the small intestine. There is no such thing as fruit rotting in your stomach!
So next time you’re about to hop on your next trip, stop and think about what you can do to mitigate coming back from your travels 10 pounds heavier.
If you are interested in working with Leah (and I highly recommend you do), feel free to contact her at: firstname.lastname@example.org
And if you need help planning your next getaway, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me!