Are we there yet? School is out for the summer and it’s time for a family vacation. Traveling with kids can be a terrific way to broaden their horizons and connect with one another. Hungry, cranky, and bored kids can also make being on the road a challenge.
Fortunately, we have a few tips to for traveling with kids, so you can make amazing memories and come back refreshed from your trip.
Focus on Food. Bring snacks!
Due to being higher in protein and healthy fats than the standard American diet, The paleo diet is more likely to sustain blood sugar levels between meals. [1:2] However, smaller stomachs often prefer to eat more frequently. Snacks can save the day, along with your sanity. Pack up a “snack box” using your child’s lunch box. Each section of the lunchbox can be filled with something different. Some of our favorite kid-approved snacks include: hard boiled eggs, homemade trail mix made from your favorite nuts, seeds, and unsweetened coconut flakes, along with sliced carrots and cucumbers with guacamole for dipping.
Hotter weather and air travel, can increase dehydration, especially in children due to their smaller size.  Kids display symptoms of dehydration, such as irritability and thirst,after they have reached a state of dehydration,  so it’s best to keep them hydrated with lots of water, or natural caffeine- and sweetener-free iced herbal teas.
Empty water bottles can be brought through airport security to be filled at the water fountains, and a cooler can be filled for long car rides. This way you will have an environmentally friendly bottle to reuse at your destination and no excuses for not taking frequent sips.
Dining out with children, for three meals a day, can be more of a nightmare than a luxury. Kids aren’t designed to sit for long periods, and eating will be more pleasurable for everyone if they aren’t plugged into a screen or you aren’t screaming at them to stay at the table. So instead of eating in a restaurant for each meal, consider ways to eat outside. Gather precooked chicken, grilled veggies, and pre-washed lettuce to pull together a picnic at a playground. Or order takeout from a paleo diet friendly restaurant, such as grilled fajitas without the tortillas, and camp out in your hotel room.
Activities to Keep Moving
Make a day of exploring the sights by bicycle. Bike sharing companies are setting up shop all over the country, making it easier to explore your destination on wheels. You can also rent bikes with kid friendly trailers and helmets at bicycle shops in many towns- even internationally. Bicycling will allow you to cover more ground than walking and allow your family a unique way to experience your vacation spot.
Hit the beach
What better way is there to celebrate summer vacation than camping out at the beach for a day? There are so many options for kids of all ages when water and sand are involved, such as swimming, kayaking, frisbee throwing, and sand castle making contests. Finish off the day with a cookout over a beach fire.
Visit the Farmers’ Market
Walk over to the farmers’ market! It’s a fantastic way to sample the region’s culture and interact with the locals. Give your kids a small budget and allow them to forage the delicacies for a meal, you may be surprised at what Paleo foods can be pulled together from all the stalls! Further, farmers’ markets offer unique souvenirs to cherish back at home or to give as gifts, such as fresh pressed oils, natural body lotions, nut butters, and legume-free hummus made entirely from nuts and veggies.
1 Gannon, Mary C., et al. “An increase in dietary protein improves the blood glucose response in persons with type 2 diabetes. ” The American journal of clinical nutrition 78.4 (2003): 734-741.
2 Maljaars, J., H. P. F. Peters, and A. M. Masclee. “The gastrointestinal tract: neuroendocrine regulation of satiety and food intake.” Alimentary pharmacology & therapeutics 26 (2007): 241-250.
3 Becker, Jonathan A., and Lynsey K. Stewart. “Heat-related illness.” American family physician 83.11 (2011).
4 Cohen, Scott J. “Dehydration in Children.” Updates in Emergency Medicine. Springer, Boston, MA, 37-41.