CC Image courtesy of Alan Alfaro

CC Image courtesy of Alan Alfaro

So its no news that I follow a different diet than the Standard American Diet (SAD). Most of you know I follow a Paleo-like template and that I avoid grains and legumes, eat whole foods from the best sources I can find and generally don't eat out much. Recently, in my pursuit to maximize my health, I have embarked on an AutoImmune Protocol to the Paleo diet. I decided to do this since I still had lingering issues, and will update on my healing journey later.

AutoImmune Protocol (AIP) has a much more extensive list of eliminations: Grains, legumes, dairy, sugar, alcohol, nuts, seeds (ahem, cacao), all nightshades (tomatoes, peppers, potatoes, eggplant, etc) and eggs! Yes eggs - those wonderfully nutrient dense orbs I have relied on for breakfast for the past year or two! Those.  I'll get into the details on AIP diet later, but suffice it to say I have been having a relatively easy time managing it at home the past three weeks.

Hawaii Island hiking

Hawaii Island hiking

Enter the Holiday! Last week I wrote about taking a Digital Sabbatical, and we thoroughly enjoyed our Hawaiian holiday... that is after my food melt-down on Day 1.  Yep - complete meltdown. I had been doing so well adopting AIP to my eating, that I hadn't a second thought about what to do when we got to our destination! Day one, we had a good breakfast, and then spent the majority of the day on a wonderful hike through tropical rainforest and volcanic craters. In fact it wasn't until 3pm that I started to get really hungry. So we stopped off at a bench near the end of our hike to snack on some beef jerky we had brought with us. But that wasn't enough and I was still hungry, no... more like hangry. So we went in search of some food at the Park Headquarters - nothing I could eat. How about the nearest town, Volcano? Nope, Nope and Nope! Nothing that met AIP criteria. I did finally manage to find a snack that was close enough to something I could eat to tide me over till dinner.

But I was not about to spend 7 days being snippy at my husband while celebrating our anniversary - that would be so non-anniversary like! So we went to not one, but two natural food stores in Hilo to stock up on the complete week's worth of meals. I made sure we had enough meat and veg to last for the full 7 days and then some. I got some pork loin roasts to make Nom Nom Paleo's Slow Cooker Kalua Pig recipe - I mean we were in Hawaii after all, and its so super easy, so why not? Plenty of leftovers for lunches in the coming days - perfect! But I had not taken stock in what I had to cook with in the kitchen at the rental place.

We did not go hungry!

We did not go hungry!

When we returned from shopping: No slow cooker! Just a few pots and pans, an oven (which in hot 90° F and humid - I'm not using an oven, thanks!) and.... hello there, rice cooker! Now normally I would dismiss it as I am not eating rice, right now. But, hey! That produces heat! So I thought, why not? I loaded everything up according to Nom Nom's recipe and used the rice cooker to cook small batches of the roast pork. A few rounds of "cook" and several hours on "keep warm" seemed to do the trick! Enough to provide lots of yummy food for meals and enough to satisfy hunger while on the trails and at the ocean! Overall, I would say we ate pretty well on this trip, and not once did we feel like we had to sacrifice anything. Best of all, no more hanger and a great anniversary.

So my pearls of wisdom from this trip:

  • Always plan ahead to have good food with you when traveling and doing elimination diets.
  • Get creative if you are traveling with cooking - it may not be perfect cooking facilities, but a little bit of salt, fire and time go a long way!
  • Traveling while doing AIP or other restricted diets are totally doable. It may seem daunting at first, but can totally be done!

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