Skip to Content

What to Eat for Altitude Sickness

Colorado Mountains
Photograph credit – Forbes – Maroon Bells in Colorado

Have you experienced Altitude Sickness? If you answered yes, my sympathy is with you – I have too! As a child, I loved skiing in the mountains except for the fact that I got sick going to a higher altitude. However, I remember my parents telling me what foods and beverages to consume and not to consume to help me adjust. Therefore, What to Eat for Altitude Sickness is a guide with food and beverage suggestions to help you better acclimate to a higher altitude.

Photograph credit – Boulder Medical Center “Altitude Sickness

Tip #1 – Maintain Hydration and Electrolytes

Staying hydrated on an everyday basis is something most people strive for, but in the altitude, it is ESSENTIAL! Staying hydrated at a higher altitude may look like drinking close to 4 liters or 1 gallon of water per day.

Photograph credit – Raw Blend “The Benefits of Staying Hydrated

In addition to drinking water in the mountains, it is recommended that you drink sports drinks, like Gatorade Zero or Pedialyte Sport, that contain sodium in them. In addition, according to The Best Diet For High Altitude, you can add sodium to your water by “adding 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt, 3 tablespoons of honey or sugar, and 1/4 cup of fresh lemon or orange juice to one quart of water” to act as a hydrating sports drink.

Pedialyte Sport will help you stay hydrated at a higher altitude.

Finally, along with drinking natural Spring water, tap water, or store-bought sports drinks, you can also make your own hydrating beverages to help prevent or lessen altitude sickness while in the mountains. Check out some of the recommendations below!

Hydrating Beverages Recipes

Watermelon Agua Fresca

Watermelon Agua Fresca

Watermelon Agua Fresca is a naturally hydrating drink, as watermelon is made up of 92% water. Pair this with a pinch of sea salt and fresh lime (or lemon) juice for your own, hydrating sports drink!

Coconut Water with Lime and Mint

Coconut Water with Lime and Mint is an excellent way to stay hydrated in the mountains and prevent or reduce the risk of Altitude Sickness.

4 Homemade Electrolyte Drinks

Looking for an electrolyte drink to help you stay hydrated and feel well? Look no further than these Homemade Electrolyte Drinks! These beverage recipes are easy to make and contain a few ingredients to help you and/or your loved ones feel ready to tackle a fun day in the mountains.

Electrolyte Drink

Think Gatorade without all the extra dyes and sugars…then you’ve thought of this drink! This recipe includes simple ingredients such as ginger, citrus, maple syrup, water, and baking soda that will keep you at your best.

Lemon Ginger Tea

Lemon Ginger Tea is a drink that will help settle your stomach if you experience altitude sickness. Slowly sip this tea while pairing it with a hydrating drink to help you feel back to normal, sooner rather than later.

Tip #2 – Eat Carbohydrates

Yep, you read that right, eat CARBS! Against all of the “anti-carb” lovers, carbs ARE your friend when you’re at a higher altitude. This is because carbohydrates fuel your energy when you’re at a higher altitude. Due to less oxygen in the air, your body is working harder and needs to “refuel.” Thus, the refueling comes from our friend, carbohydrates.

yellow pasta beside onions
Photo by Pixabay on

So, what are some of the carbohydrates that are recommended when you’re living, working, and/or playing at a higher altitude?

Here are some of our favorite carbohydrate-rich recipes that are sure to help you feel full, fuel your body, and help you feel great at a high altitude!

Carbohydrate-Rich Recipes

Sourdough Oyster Crackers
Sourdough Oyster Crackers are a carb-rich favorite that is tasty for adults and kids! These crackers are perfect for walking around town, hiking in the mountains, or fueling your body to feel better.

Sourdough Rye Sandwich Bread

Sourdough Rye Sliced Bread
Sourdough Rye Sandwich Bread is carbohydrate-rich and can be consumed plain, toasted, or packed as a sandwich. This is one of the tastiest bread to help you feel better at a higher altitude.

Sourdough Crescent Rolls

Top View of Crescent Rolls
Are you a fan of the Pillsbury Dough Boy Crescent Rolls? If yes, you’ll LOVE these! Sourdough Crescent Rolls are carb-rich and will help fuel your body for all the fun to be had in the mountains.

Chicken Pesto Pizza

Pizza is one of my favorite things to eat while in a higher elevation! It not only tastes delicious, but it fuels my body and helps give me the energy I need to feel better and stay active. Chicken Pesto Pizza will fuel your body with carbs and protein, and it will help you feel better while at a higher altitude.
summer grain bowl
Summer Grain Bowls will fuel your body with carbs from grains, vegetables, and fruit! These are the perfect altitude meal!

Tip #3 – Consume Enough

Higher altitudes lead to less oxygen in our lungs which means our bodies work harder to produce energy. Because of this, many times we do not consume enough calories at higher altitudes.

Therefore, it is important to consume enough (calorie-wise) in order for our bodies to continue feeling their best. Finally, balancing your meals with carbs, protein, fruits, vegetables, and a hydrating beverage will fuel your body and keep it performing at its best. It will also help to reduce the symptoms of altitude sickness.

Looking for well-rounded meals to help fuel your body at higher altitudes? Check out the recipes below!

Well-Rounded Meals

Top 10 Summer Grain Bowls

Top 10 Summer Grain Bowls
The Top 10 Summer Grain Bowls include fueling ingredients from carbohydrates to fruit to vegetables to protein! Fuel your body at higher altitudes with these featured recipes.

Bang Bang Shrimp Po Boy

Bang Bang Shrimp Po Boy
Bang Bang Shrimp Po Boy is packed with protein, vegetables, and carbohydrates that will fuel your body for all the activities you want to participate in at a higher altitude.

AIP-Friendly Honey “Mustard” Chicken Salad

AIP-Friendly Honey “Mustard” Chicken Salad will fuel you from the green vegetables, protein, and fruit. This salad does not contain complex carbohydrates, so it fits the carb-reduced diet best!

Crispy Lemon Chicken

Crispy Lemon Chicken can be paired with snap peas and rice for a well-rounded meal that will keep your body fueled and healthy at a higher altitude.

Sourdough Discard Granola

Sourdough Granola Pre Bake
Sourdough Discard Granola is a simple way to pack calories, vitamins, protein, iron, Zinc, and more into your diet. Furthermore, this is a great grab-and-go snack when getting acclimated to a higher altitude and feeling better to enjoy all the things the mountains have to offer.

Tip #4 – Load Up On Iron and Protein

Finally, tip number 4 for reducing the risk of altitude sickness and/or feeling better is to load up on protein and iron. Low iron and protein will leave you feeling fatigued. Therefore, you want to eat iron-rich foods and keep those in your diet as you travel to and from a higher altitude.

bunch of nuts served on bowls
Photo by Mike on

Some foods that are iron-rich include –

Iron-Rich Recipes

Bison Empanadas

Bison Mole Empanadas
Bison is Game Meat that is packed with protein and iron. Furthermore, Bison Empanadas are a terrific iron and protein-rich meal or snack that will help you adjust to the altitude and feel better.

Steamed Mussels in White Wine Sauce

Steamed Mussels is a recipe I remember eating as a kid when I tried to feel better after the altitude sickness struck. One of the reasons Mussels are great to eat in the mountains is because they are an iron-rich protein!

Jimmy Dean Breakfast Sandwiches

Sourdough Discard Drop Biscuits as Breakfast Sandwiches
Jimmy Dean Breakfast Sandwiches are made with lean, ground Venison which is an iron-rich Game Meat. Make this recipe in bulk, store them in individual foil wrappings, and eat them on the go as you explore the great outdoors!

Ground Venison Meatloaves

Ground Venison Meatloaves are the ultimate iron-rich meal as these meatloaves are wrapped in bacon and served with dark green vegetables. Serve this as one of the first meals in the mountains to help you acclimate to the altitude and reduce altitude sickness.

Hearty One-Pot Lentil Stew

Hearty One-Pot Lentil Stew is packed with protein, iron, and carbohydrates to keep your body healing and fueled. Serve this as a beginning meal once you get into the higher altitudes and let these ingredients work their magic.