If you ever felt more hungriness while you are on a tour, you are not having a random wrong feeling as research shows that good eating habits can be altered by travelling. According to a study published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, regular business travelers those who travel more than three weeks are in greater risk of poorer outcomes including smoking, alcohol dependency, trouble sleeping, depression, and anxiety symptoms. All these could lead to obesity and other serious health issues like high blood pressure if individual stresses are not managed well.
Following are three reasons indicating why travel can increase your appetite and how you can control them.
The jet lag effect
According to a 2017 study, frequent change in time zone can disrupt function of two hormones; ghrelin that increases appetite and leptin that decreases appetite. Repeatedly crossing your time zone could lead you to eat more frequently or longing to take high-calorie foods. Our sleep-wake patterns get impacted from moving between different time zones which could alter our scheduling of hunger cues – explains Alissa, a certified RD based in New York. Your cortisol levels also could go up if you are not taking enough sleep which could lead to increased hungriness as well.
How to fix: To reset your internal body clock, try to have meals at proper time following your new time zone. You should also respond to your inside hunger signals as our bodies are smart enough to signaling us when we need to fuel up.
The effect of dehydration
It’s so common to feel thirst when you are on a plane. The cabin humidity sometimes could be less than 10% making you dehydrated and that can result increasing your appetite. Out of no reason you might leave your water bottle back at home or you pass the drink booth unchecked, but it can be harder to feel your hunger cues when you are dehydrated.
How to fix: Keep a filled water bottle with you before boarding the plane and drink routinely while you travel. And make sure you take plenty of fluids before, during and after your flight to keep you stay hydrated. And by means of fluid, you would better go for plain mineral water, not some diuretics like caffeine or alcohol as they could lead to dehydrate you again.
Enticement is everywhere
The tempting scent of Bacon-Stuffed Cinnamon Rolls wafting throughout the airport lobby, to the rows of chicken nuggets at the gas station, could lead you to consume hundreds of extra calories on the way till you reach your end point. And research has revealed that people tend to consume 22% calories more when they are exposed to a variety of different foods.
How to fix: When choosing meals for travels, opt for light but nutritious snacks like nuts, fruits and yogurt to keep you energized instead of ultra-indulgent sweets, says Whitney Linsenmeyer, PhD, RD. Meals like cucumber and cream cheese whipped on whole wheat bread; jelly on rye with peanut butter; grilled chicken, tomato, lettuce and mustard in whole grain wrap are all good to go as best travel meals.