Jet Setting with PCOS: Travel Tips for Managing Your Symptoms
by Fran Jakubowicz on Oct 05, 2023
Traveling with PCOS can be a challenge, but it's definitely possible with a little planning. Here are some tips on how to manage your PCOS symptoms while on the go:
Before you go:
- Research your destination. Find out about the availability of healthy food options, as well as any local customs or restrictions that may be relevant to your PCOS. For example, some countries have restrictions on importing certain medications.
- Talk to your doctor. Let them know about your travel plans and discuss any concerns you have. They can provide you with personalized advice and help you to develop a plan to manage your symptoms.
- Pack your medications. Bring an extra supply of all of your medications, including over-the-counter medications. It's also a good idea to pack a copy of your prescription in case you need to have it refilled while you're away from home.
- Pack healthy snacks. It can be difficult to find healthy food options when traveling, so it's a good idea to pack your own snacks. Choose foods that are low in sugar and processed carbohydrates, and high in protein and fiber. Some good options include nuts, seeds, hard-boiled eggs, and fruit.
While you're traveling:
- Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water throughout the day to stay hydrated. This is especially important if you're traveling to a hot climate.
- Eat regular meals. Avoid skipping meals, as this can lead to low blood sugar and worsen PCOS symptoms.
- Choose healthy food options. When eating out, choose restaurants that offer healthy food options. You can also ask the kitchen to make modifications to dishes to make them healthier.
- Get enough sleep. Most adults need 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Lack of sleep can worsen PCOS symptoms such as insulin resistance and weight gain.
- Exercise regularly. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise most days of the week. If you're traveling, there are plenty of ways to stay active, such as walking, swimming, or hiking.
If you have specific PCOS symptoms:
- Irregular periods: If you have irregular periods, talk to your doctor about taking birth control pills or another form of hormonal contraception. This can help to regulate your periods and reduce your risk of complications such as endometrial cancer.
- Acne: If you have acne, pack your usual acne medications. You may also want to bring a portable facial steamer, which can help to open up your pores and make your medications more effective.
- Hirsutism (excessive hair growth): If you have hirsutism, pack your usual hair removal products. You may also want to bring loose-fitting clothing to help keep you cool.
If you have any concerns about traveling with PCOS, be sure to talk to your doctor before you go. They can provide you with personalized advice and help you to develop a plan to manage your symptoms.
Here are some additional tips for traveling with PCOS:
- Be flexible. Things don't always go according to plan when traveling, so it's important to be flexible. If you can't find a healthy meal option, don't be afraid to eat something that's not ideal. Just try to get back on track with your next meal or snack.
- Don't stress. Traveling can be stressful, but it's important to try to relax and enjoy yourself. Stress can worsen PCOS symptoms, so it's important to find ways to manage stress while traveling. Some helpful tips include getting regular exercise, practicing yoga or meditation, and spending time in nature.
Traveling with PCOS can be a challenge, but it's definitely possible with a little planning. By following these tips, you can manage your symptoms and have a great time on your vacation.