Eating Healthy After Traveling: How I Get Back on Track

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Megan with a kitchen in the background

What a week! Last week, we flew to California to attend the Natural Products Expo and film a couple TV segments to promote my new cookbook, No Excuses Detox.

I had originally intended on sharing a peek at how I ate while traveling, but that plan was interrupted when I found myself sick just 24 hours after we landed. Boo. I’m not sure if I was struck with food poisoning from something I tried at the Expo, or if it was just a 24-hour bug, but let’s just say that I couldn’t keep any food inside my stomach for a good portion of our trip.

cut watermelon, a salad, and asparagus on a plate

Instead, I ended up sending Austin out on an emergency run to the store to pick up a bottle of Sonnes #7 (bentonite clay) and watermelon the night before I was scheduled to cook on the Hallmark Channel. That liquid clay is my go-to supplement when I feel any illness coming on!

When I’m sick, I’m a big believer in eating whatever my body tells me it wants. During this particular episode, my body only wanted fruit, like blueberries, apples, and watermelon, so that’s what I ate. There were also times where I couldn’t eat at all, so I would just drink as much water as possible to try to keep up with my baby’s breastfeeding demands. Above is a picture of the lunch I had on set– a mixed veggie salad with balsamic dressing, grilled asparagus, and watermelon. I love the idea of keeping roasted veggies in your fridge for a comforting salad topper, so this was a good reminder for me to start doing that again.

I’ll share more about our recent trip in my next post, but for now I wanted to share a look at how we’re getting back into an eating routine after traveling. I feel like it can be extra-challenging to eat well after dining out for nearly a week straight (whether you’ve been traveling or not), so I hope these tips might help if you’re in a similar position, too.

Chocolate superfood shake in a blender, salad in a bowl, and chocolate chip cookie dough being mixed in a bowl

Here are 5 things that always help me get back on track quickly:

Smoothies. For us, smoothies in the morning are just a habit now– we’ve practiced it enough that it’s just become second nature at this point. What’s nice about our favorite Chocolate Superfood Shake (from this bonus pack) is that most of the ingredients are shelf-stable, so we always have them on hand. Because of that, I can’t use the excuse “well, I need to go to the store so we can eat healthy again” when it comes to our smoothies! I actually did plan ahead for this trip and bought a fresh box of baby spinach so that it would be waiting for us in the fridge when we got home. No excuses!

Healthy snacks. I find that my healthy eating habits often fall through the cracks if I don’t have an easy-to-grab snack in the fridge waiting for me. Right now, my two go-to snacks are my Nut-Free Energy Bites (which I made before we traveled) and Engine 2 Hummus (it’s made with no added oil) with Mary’s Gone Crackers or sliced cucumber. Both options are convenient and delicious!

Salads. The first thing I do when I get home is make a salad dressing, so that there is no reason for us to skip having a daily salad. I personally like to make the same salad over and over again until I get sick of the toppings, and then I move on to something different. This week, I made a double-batch of Everyday Basil Vinaigrette (from my first cookbook) and I’ve been pouring it over crunchy romaine, bell peppers, radish, and a bit of raw gorgonzola. Sometimes we add chicken for dinner to our salads and other nights I’ll keep it vegetarian and add avocado instead. Either way, it’s delicious and I haven’t gotten sick of it yet.

Something sweet. We didn’t eat 100% healthy while traveling, because there are too many of our old favorites in Los Angeles to miss. So, my sweet tooth is feeling a little stronger than usual, and I won’t let myself feel deprived. In my personal experience, deprivation leads to falling off the wagon completely, so I’d much rather indulge in a naturally sweetened treat than throw in the towel all together. This week, I’ve been enjoying the Deep Dish Chocolate Chip Cookie from my new book— it’s better than any other cookie that I’ve ever made, healthy or otherwise.

Stop trying to be perfect. This applies to anytime in life, not just after traveling or dining out too often. It took me years to learn this lesson, but I find that I’m much more successful at almost everything when I stop trying to be “perfect” about it. It’s okay if I have a french fry or a cookie, even if I’m trying to make healthy choices. I’d much rather eat whatever I’m craving and move on afterward, without feeling like I “slipped up” and need to start fresh another day. Having to “start over” is just another form of procrastination– an excuse that we tell ourselves so we can keep eating indulgent foods without holding ourselves accountable. (a.k.a binge eating) There’s no need to start over if you eat something that is less than perfect; just move on and make a better choice the next time you’re hungry.

I’ll be back soon with a recap of our Los Angeles trip and some of the fun products we saw at the Expo, but until then I hope you’re having a good week!

Reader Feedback: Do you have any other tricks that you use to get back on track?




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Izzy | Pinch of delight

These are such great tips and I hope your feeling better now.
I really relate with the ‘perfect’ one, I need to stop worrying about trying to be perfectly healthy and start eating what my body wants whilst remaining healthy at the same time!


What is in your chocolate superfood shake?


Do you think the bentonite clay is safe for pregnancy? Would love more info on this. I got food poisoning a few weeks ago and now have a cold, just want to get back to normal!!

    Megan Gilmore

    I don’t know a definitive answer on that, but I can tell you that I used it myself several times during my last pregnancy. It was a life saver!


I really like this post!! I LOVE all your posts!! Keep up the good work!


Thanks for this Megan. I was in London for 3 weeks and just got home 2 days ago and I’m struggling to get back on track. I didn’t do too bad on the trip but felt a little guilty for the cheats so your post makes me feel a little less so! Appreciate the tips!

    Megan Gilmore

    Definitely don’t feel guilty!! London treats sound totally worth it. 😉


What are your thoughts on consuming raw veggies in smoothies? I’ve heard that it can be hard for your body to break down raw spinach/kale/greens so I’ve been hesitant to get back on the smoothie bandwagon. Thanks!

    Megan Gilmore

    I know some people believe that the blender helps your body break down raw veggies because the blender basically pre-chews your food for you, helping you to absorb more of the nutrition in the plant cell walls. I’m a big fan of adding raw leafy greens to my smoothies!!

Erin Althaus

Oh I haven’t heard of using bentonite clay when you are sick. Is that all sickness or mostly tummy bugs? We did learn about activated charcoal when 2 of our kids were throwing up in January. My husband and I took it and did have a little bit of tummy aches but nothing near what they had! I am with you on eating healthy after traveling though! I think what’s hardest for me is losing my batch cooking time over the weekend and starting Monday off “on the wrong foot” and behind. Good tips!

    Megan Gilmore

    Yes, I use it for any type of sickness! I’ve even used it for my dog in the past after she ate chocolate– the vet said he was really surprised by how well it worked for her!


Great idea to make the snacks before leaving. I will try that next time! I’m going to need to try the deep dish cookie right away. My two year old made the chocolate chip cookies from your first book today for “cooking class.” I’m not sure why we hadn’t made those yet, but we may have already eaten half the (2 dozen) batch. So if that deep dish cookie is even better, that’s really saying something!


Hi Megan, Could you offer a little more info on how you leverage the Sonnes #7 as a supplement? Are you blending it with water? Or ?? How often would you consume when feeling something coming on?


So sorry your trip was tainted by illness! That’s never fun:( I seem to crave starch carbs when I get stomach bugs. During the worst of it, I simply sip veggie broth and eat (gasp!) Ritz crackers. Then I move onto Panera soup in a sourdough bread bowl! To get back on track, I have a smoothie for breakfast with some fresh ginger to keep my tummy happy. Salads and sweet potatoes are usually involved for lunch and dinner!


Love my morning green smoothies – your chocolate frosty from No Excuses is my new favorite! I’ve tried it with the cashews, sunbutter, peanut butter, and almond butter. All delicious! Curious what your thoughts are on cooking spinach or kale before putting them in smoothies (due to high oxolate levels). Thanks for all the great recipes!!

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