Making your lifestyle work at home becomes pretty easy once you’ve figured out what you like and know where to find everything you need. But what about when you’re traveling? Depending on where you are going some manuevering might be necessary, but planning ahead should make stressing out a non-issue.
If you can get a hotel with a kitchen, awesome. You’ll be supplied with a cutting board, knives, and bowls so all you have to think about is going to a store nearby or ordering room service.
Side note: The Hard Rock Hotel in San Diego has an awesome selection of fresh fruits and vegetables from which to choose!
If staying in a room with a kitchen isn’t possible or you aren’t staying at a hotel or house, try and bring the essentials and pick up produce wherever and whenever you can. The best fruits to bring along are those that don’t require tools. I already had the coconut, pineapple, and watermelon at home so I brought them with us, since we were relocating, but I would typically stick with “fast foods” such as mangos, apples, grapes, blueberries, tamarinds, bananas, oranges and anything else I could easily open and eat with my hands.
If you are traveling for a long period of time you might want to incorporate more variety in your diet, which might mean you’ll want to pack a few extra items Though there is a way to open coconuts without any tools, if you’re looking for a clean way to do it I recommend getting yourself a Coco Jack. The tools are small and make the process really easy. For melons, there are plenty of blunt tipped watermelon knife options available at household goods stores and online.
So what if you don’t want to eat with your hands for every meal? I scored these awesome wooden utensils (above) at H Mart in San Diego and they can be found at various other Asian supermarkets, Whole Foods Markets, and on the internet (make sure the wood isn’t treated with chemicals before you buy). Why use wood or bamboo instead of metal? Well, for one, by using metal and stainless steel you could be introducing heavy metals into your body such as aluminum, nickel, and chromium, which can be stored as toxins in the body. Especially if you have a sensitive immune system, eliminating heavy metals from your life as much as you can is essential but this is also necessary for everyone else, as well.
The reasons not to use plastic are endless but begin with the fact that many plastic particles leach into food and beverages just as easily as metal. What’s more, wood and bamboo biodegrades so are better for the planet, in the long run. Yes, trees have to be chopped down to make them but in today’s extremely flawed world, our best bet is to focus on the lesser of the many evils.
When you’re on the move there won’t always be a sink at the ready. Of course, if you have your toothpaste and travel toothbrush, that is great and can be used without water. But carrying floss with you is also ideal for cleaning in between meals and is non-abrasive on your enamel. Flossing a few times a day is helpful for warding off tooth decay, especially if you are big on dried fruits. This vegan floss by Eco Dent can be found at Sprouts and is a bit pricey but cruelty free. Many floss brands use beeswax as a coating so you’ll want to pay attention to the label when going the vegan route (but you’re probably use to this by now).
Beyond floss, an essential ingredient for proper tooth care is sunlight. Sunlight is what our bodies need to produce Vitamin D and this is what helps regulate certain genes that would otherwise contribute to disease in the mouth and tooth decay. So while I would recommend getting yourself a stylish parasol like the one pictured in this blog post, I also suggest going without it for a bit and getting some sun first.
After a nice day of sunshine and adventuring, you’re going to want a good body soap to refresh (unless you are completely one with nature and just rinse with water, in which case I envy you). My favorite body and hand soap by far is Dr Bronner’s and I am excited to let you know that Target sells travel size containers of this magical stuff. While I would prefer to not keep anything I put on or in my body in plastic, this little guy really does come in handy and can also be used as shampoo.
For my face I typically rinse with water, unless I’ve been wearing makeup in which case I oil cleanse. If I want to make sure my face is extra clean I opt for mixing a small amount of Tea Tree Oil with water and using it on cotton swabs as a toner. Tea Tree Oil is produced from the leaves of the Melaleuca alternifolia tree in Australia and has a plethora of uses. For the skin it is good for healing sunburn, infection, acne, rashes and more! It does all of this because of its antibacterial, antimicrobial, antiseptic, and fungicide properties. This small container by Desert Essence can be found at Sprouts and trust me when I say a drop or two is sufficient. Oh, and be prepared for a nice aroma and some tingling on your face.
One of the many fun parts of traveling, for a lot of people, is eating out and trying new foods. For Raw Vegans, however, options can definitely be limited in certain parts of the world. Check out my last blog post about eating out for some tips on how to best navigate this type of situation.
We just happen to be traveling within the U.S. so some of the restaurants here are familiar to me, even if just by name. The Cheesecake Factory has this beautiful and tasty Thai Lettuce Wrap that I have already eaten three times in the past week and a half.
Side note: Order the wrap without chicken and only peanut sauce on the side to make it vegan, or without sauce to make it completely raw. Add avocado for extra nutrition!
I’m still surprised by how foreign a concept vegan food is to a lot of people but am happy to say that my dining requests have been met with so many gracious servers here in Hawaii. Not only have they been extra careful in getting my order correct but some of them have even gone back to the kitchen just to make sure that the food I was ordering was actually vegan. Keep that in mind if you’re a raw vegan planning to travel to Oahu; you’ll be in good hands!
Photo Credit: Lola O Photography