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Low carb in hotels and on the road

Discussion in 'Type 2 Diabetes' started by SOTR, Apr 12, 2021.

  1. SOTR

    SOTR · Active Member

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    I work as an IT engineer. In the past I have done big projects on customer sites, which involve driving to site, eating sandwiches or whatever you bring for lunch. In the evenings I am in hotels and in the past have fallen into the trap of eating chips etc. out of boredom. Hotel breakfasts also worry me now - plenty of toast and pastries etc.

    So hints and tips for getting low carb food and snacks when driving and in hotels please?
    What are good things to ask for on hotel menus?

    I guess I can take a cooler bag in the car and visit proper supermarkets rather than service station outlets. So maybe able to keep cold meats and cheese
     
  2. Ronancastled

    Ronancastled Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    If you're lucky enough to get a fry up or buffet breakfast that's sorted.
    Lunch was easier if you can tolerate bread.
    Evening dinner was awkward unless you can throw in exercise after or knock back a few glasses of wine during.
     
  3. HSSS

    HSSS Type 2 · Expert

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    Hotel breakfasts I’d stick to eggs in various formats and bacon, mushrooms if on offer too. Sausages are likely to be stuffed with carby fillers as cheaper ones usually are.

    lunchtimes definitely the supermarket option and a cooler bag for cold meats salad, eggs and cheese. Maybe a good flask for the first day out from home. Or if you have to grab and go, a salad with proteins added or a burger less bun. I have resorted to tubs of egg Mayo and a teaspoon in the past. (I know the oil isn’t great but as a rare thing I’m not going to sweat it).

    Evenings it’s much like eating out at any time. Look for uncoated meats/fish, get dubious sauces on the side. Swap rice/pasta/potato elements for extra salad and veg. Have pasta sauces over green veg not pasta. Mix and match suitable starters to create a main. I just explain I can’t eat anything starchy/sugary for medical reasons that aren’t an allergy and ask for another item that’s already on the menu to replace it (ie it’s definitely in the kitchen). Never been refused yet although I haven’t had chance to do it in over a year now.
     
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  4. Goonergal

    Goonergal Type 2 · Moderator
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    I don’t usually find it a big problem, but it would depend upon whether the hotel is close to any other food sources, or whether you’re restricted to their menu.

    If the latter, I’d suggest browsing the menu in advance and also letting them know of your requirements. There are usually low carb options and swaps that can be made - extra veg in place of chips/rice; burgers with no bun, with an egg or extra cheese/bacon. If the former, then the hot counters in supermarkets are good, and there are plenty of restaurant options using services like Deliveroo (or that you pick up yourself).

    It’s a good idea, as you suggest, to have a cool bag or box that you can keep in the car. Again most supermarkets will have things you can grab and go without going down the carby route - hard boiled eggs, cold meats/fish, salad bowls (usually any dressing is in a separate sachet), individually wrapped pieces of cheese, nuts and so on. Even WH Smith has a surprising array of low carb take away options.

    If you have a fridge in your room you can also stock up with a few emergency bits and if the breakfast isn’t likely to have eggs/meat options, a good way to store things for the morning.

    There was another thread about this recently too - should be able to find it with the search function for more ideas.
     
  5. Lamont D

    Lamont D Reactive hypoglycemia · Master

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    Hotels now have to provide details of the contents of all their food.
    The best way to approach the hotel, is ask the resident chef to cook you something that is low carb.
    I never had problems with food, as you can pick up a salad on most motorway services. One of my favourite meals is grilled gammon with poached eggs, and which veg is available.
    Breakfast is not a problem as long as you find out how certain hotels cook food and how it's presented.
    The only time I had to miss a hotel breakfast was at Wembley, when everything on offer was pre cooked and obviously not low carb and non chance of getting something cooked.
    We never used that hotel chain again.

    You should not have anything that has been processed and covered with dressing. There are hurdles out there but even mackies will make a salad for you.

    Safe travelling.
     
  6. Roggg

    Roggg Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hotel breakfasts: Continental is usually a complete disaster. Nothing but muffins, cereal and toast. Hot buffet is awesome. Nothing better than a plate of bacon, sausage, and scrambled eggs. Although depending on where you are, buffets may not be open due to covid. Made-to-order breakfast can usually be provided low-carb if you ask for adjustments. I think tomato slices in place of toast/potato seems pretty standard.

    For lunch, you're pretty much on the right track. The standard keto equivalent of sandwiches is the meat/cheese lunch. You may also want to stock up on nuts and pork rinds too.

    The bigger challenge for me was always temptation, not availability. It's hard to pass on the pastries and muffins when they are everywhere. The best way to deal with boredom (IMO) is walking. I get out off the hotels as much as I can just to have something to do.

    If you have a choice in which hotels to book, you can always make sure to book one with viable breakfast options and an in-room fridge. Good luck.
     
  7. MrsA2

    MrsA2 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Nuts and olives are good transportable items that don't need refrigeration, and can be filling enough to fill in for a meal.
    Skipping the odd meal is OK too for type 2s I believe

    I used to work in Italy quite a bit and am ever so grateful I wasn't diagnosed back then. I think I'd really struggle there now, foodwise especially restaurant lunches and dinners
     
  8. LaoDan

    LaoDan Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I’ve been traveling since February, I book rooms with a kitchenette and mostly make my own meals. Lots of smoked salmon, eggs, tins of chicken and nuts.
     
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  9. KennyA

    KennyA Type 2 (in remission!) · Well-Known Member

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    Doing Atkins (wasn't diabetic then, officially) while working away I'd hit the hotel breakfast buffet hard - eggs (lots) and bacon generally, didn't ever trust the sausages. Usually needed to eat nothing until evening. Fall back then was always a roast chicken, cold or hot, from a supermarket.
     
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  10. FSnow

    FSnow · Member

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    We have travelled through Italy and all of Europe many time with a simple formulae

    Always take a few bags of walnuts in your case and take some to the breakfast buffet.
    Sus out the youghurt - Choose low carb Greek or plain if available check labels or ask.. Just add youghurt to nuts - maybe a few berries if available. If youghurt is not available at hotel just buy some at local shop and take it to breakfast.- Get a letter from your doctor that says your a diabetic and say you are on a restricted diet - which is true- if some on challenges you.

    Have bacon eggs spinach tomato etc.. Cold meats, tomatoes and cheese if no hot breakfast.

    We usually skip lunch - just have black coffee with cream.

    For dinner - Go Italian - Italian restaurants are pretty much everywhere. No pasta or pizza for you. Most good Italian restaurants will always have chicken and vegetables or veal and vegetables.
    Just skip the potatoes and boost the greens. With some red wine you will be fine.

    You can always snak on walnuts or some cheese from the local shop if the hotel has a small fridge

    Hope this helps
     
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