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Conquering Travel Bloat and Constipation on the Go

Conquering Travel Bloat and Constipation on the Go - The Sabi

By Hilary Metcalfe

If you are like me, your system likes familiarity, your bathroom, your morning smoothie or coffee, whatever your usual things are to get things going au toilet. When I travel, I always deal with a little backup: struggling to go, feeling bloated and uncomfortable, especially after a long haul flight, disrupted sleep, new places and different food.

Before you hit the road or hop on that plane, let's address this common travel woe - bloating and constipation. Disruptions in routine, dietary changes, and even excitement can affect your digestive system, putting a damper on your trip. Fear not, fellow traveller! Here are some tips to keep your gut happy, your adventures and colon, sailing smooth. First though…

Why Does Travel Disrupt Digestion?

Our digestive system thrives on consistency. Travel throws things off balance - new time zones, unfamiliar foods, wonky or missed sleep and changes in activity levels all play a role. It can slow down your digestion, from stomach emptying and ease (where cramps come in, from a tense tummy)  leading to bloating and constipation. Imagine your digestive system as a well-oiled machine. Travel is a wrench in the gears, but not always a bad thing. Sometimes I discover new foods or things that help, not hinder digestion. Being in Japan for the first time for instance, I was inadvertently eating mostly gluten-free and having low-sugar breakfasts (rice and fish instead of oats, cereal and fruit), which gave me less bloating and more energy! Bonus. If it does turn out to be an unwelcome challenge, here is what you can do. 

Tummy Tamers: Your Travel Toolkit

  • Hydration Hero: Dehydration is a major culprit behind constipation. Water is your best friend, especially when travelling. Aim to sip on water throughout the day, even if you don't feel thirsty for flushing the system and for hydration (preferably with a dash of good quality, unrefined sea salt). Think of it as internal spring cleaning! Carry a reusable water bottle and refill it frequently. If plain water isn't your thing, add a squeeze of lemon or cucumber for a refreshing twist.

  • Warmth over cold: I adhere to the Chinese tradition of drinking warm water and teas instead of cold water, leaning into the idea that your digestive system is like your internal furnace, keep it warm and stoked - and not douse it with ice or cold.

  • Fibre Fiesta: Pack high-fibre snacks like fruits and vegetables. I like raspberries, dried figs and a plain pack of crudite of cucumbers and celery with an avocado and hummus. Here's a list of fruits with high fibre content per 100g, which can be beneficial for digestion and overall health:

  • Figs (dried): 9.8g
  • Avocado: 6.7g
  • Raspberries: 6.5g
  • Blackberries: 5.3g
  • Guava: 5.4g
  • Pears: 3.1g
  • Bananas: 2.6g
  • Apples with skin: 2.4g
  • Oranges: 2.4g
  • Strawberries: 2.0g

Regarding vegetables, some might contribute to constipation, typically due to their lower fibre content or specific components that could slow digestion for some individuals:

  • White potatoes (without skin): 1.8g
  • Corn (sweet, canned): 2.0g

On the other hand, here are vegetables with the highest fibre content per 100g, which are generally good for preventing and alleviating constipation:

  • Green peas: 5.7g
  • Artichokes: 5.4g
  • Brussels sprouts: 3.8g
  • Sweet potatoes (with skin): 3.0g
  • Carrots: 2.8g
  • Beetroot: 2.8g
  • Broccoli: 2.6g
  • Kale: 2.0g
  • Spinach: 2.2g
  • Swiss chard: 1.6g

Seeds (chia seeds, pumpkin seeds) also add bulk to your stool and keep things moving, ensuring a happy digestive tract.

  • Probiotic Power: consider incorporating probiotic supplements or probiotic yoghurts into your diet. Probiotics are live bacteria that can help maintain a healthy gut microbiome, promoting regular bowel movements. They are tiny allies for your digestive system. They help repopulate your good gut bacteria.

  • Listen to Your Body: don't ignore the urge to go! Holding it in can worsen constipation. Pay attention to your body's signals and find a bathroom when nature calls.

  • Move It or Lose It: sitting for long periods, especially on planes or trains, can contribute to constipation. Get up and walk around whenever possible, or do some gentle stretches in your seat. Even small movements can help keep your digestion on track. I like yogi seated circles, winding in slow, big rounds which give your colon an internal massage.

  • The L-Pose: since I was a little girl and complained my tummy hurt, my mother would have me lay down on my left side, left leg extended and bring the right leg up, with a bent knee. You look like the letter L laying down. This pose honours the natural position of the colon and where it empties into the lower intestine, helping gas and doo-doo go on their merry way - out and not in.

  • Travel-Smart Eating: while indulging is part of the travel experience, try to limit processed foods, sugary drinks, and simple carb bombs (croissants for breakfast with jam, anyone?). These can all worsen bloating and constipation.  Stick to fresh, whole foods as much as possible.

  • Plan for Regularity: if you know you're prone to constipation, consider a gentle laxative before or during travel or start taking your probiotics a few days before travel. Discuss this option with your doctor beforehand. There's no shame in a little extra help to keep your travels happy and healthy!

  • Digestive Herbs: nature’s apothecary offers a wealth of solutions for digestive troubles, which we blended in The Digestive SABI Herbata, here’s which herbs and why they work. I pop a few bags into my carry-on to help keep everything going, belly flat-ish and digestion happy. You can get these benefits from eating whole food, spice or consuming one at a time, though I prefer the all-my-bases-covered approach!


Aids Digestion

Reduces Cramping

Alleviates Bloating

Microbiome Health


Promotes relaxation of the digestive tract and reduces gas through essential oils, particularly anethole.

Antispasmodic (relaxing) effects that ease cramping.

Acts as a diuretic to release excess water and gas.

Supports the growth of beneficial gut flora with prebiotics.


Regulates digestion by slowing gastric emptying and offering antioxidant protection.

Manages menstrual cramps and digestive discomfort with anti-inflammatory properties.

Enhances digestion and nutrient absorption.

Maintains a healthy balance of gut bacteria with antimicrobial properties.


Contributes to overall digestive health and regularity with high levels of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

Anti-inflammatory properties may reduce muscle cramps and spasms.

High fibre content helps prevent constipation.

Supports gut barrier function and good gut bacteria proliferation.


Aromatic oils stimulate the digestive system to speed up and ease digestion.

Warming effect and muscle relaxing properties help diminish cramping.

Manages gas and bloating with carminative properties.

Phytochemicals promote beneficial bacterial growth for a healthy microbiome.

By following these simple tips, you can avoid digestive discomfort and embrace the joy of spring travel. Remember, a happy gut is a happy traveller! So, pack your bags, embrace the adventure, and conquer bloating and constipation with these handy tricks. Now, get out there and explore the world with confidence and comfort! Let your spring adventures be filled with new experiences, delicious food, and a healthy, happy digestive system.

Hilary is the Co-Founder of the SABI, a Holistic Nutritionist, natural, whole foods Chef, product developer and advocate for women getting to know their bodies, cycles and selves better. Born in Los Angeles, California and raised in Baja California, Mexico, she now lives in Amsterdam, The Netherlands with her partner Kees, a curly-tailed rescue dog from Curacao, Flint and her rainbow baby, Paloma. 


Created as a brand to help women navigate the toughest moments in pregnancy, childbirth, postpartum — and practically every stage of life –– The SABI aims to change the narrative around our hormones from one of taboo, embarrassment, and loneliness to awareness and pride. As more than a wellness brand, The SABI offers a carefully-crafted line of products to carry you through your hormonal journey, including rituals, supportive tools, and ancient herbal remedies that have been tested time and time again by women and now come backed by medicine. The SABI is a blend of science and nature conceived by women who have experienced the joys and deep struggles of bringing a child into the world, the pains of a heavy, difficult period, miscarriage, and difficulty conceiving.
We offer you an invitation to get to know your body and its cycles better –– an invitation to really understand what is going on inside. Learn to use your hormonal cycle to your advantage no matter your stage of life, and know that you can support and balance your hormone levels. Look for the right sources of information. Know that there is help, and know that you’re supported.
The SABI blog and articles are not meant to instruct or advise on medical or health conditions, but to inform. The information and opinions presented here do not substitute professional medical advice or consultations with healthcare professionals for your unique situation. 

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Use code WELCOME15 for 15% off first purchase

Use code WELCOME15 for 15% off first purchase