Traveling with Lipedema: What to Consider

All you beautiful Lipedema ladies know I love a good getaway vacation, and I just recently announced I’ve become a Professional Travel Agent (in addition to my other businesses)! Well, I also I just recently booked a trip to Miami and Italy! I’ll be traveling to Oregon this month as well to visit my Mother and Father, Daughter and Granddaughter, friends and such.

There are many things to consider when planning to travel with lipedema legs. Our beautiful lippy legs undergo a lot of pressure, but none moreso that when we are on the move – whether its by jet, car, train or bus. Even with treatments like a healthy anti-inflammatory Lipedema diet, lipedema compression garments, lipedema supplements, and lipedema liposuction, we can still deal with aches, pains and swelling.

Here are some of the struggles I have to consider when I travel:

  • Avoiding Aching Feet: I have to pack various pairs of comfortable walking shoes that are also cute, not hideous, that will keep my feet clean, cool and dry while I move through the airport security, walking tours of the hillside streets of the Almafi coast of Italy, and sexy for a night out in Miami without breaking my neck or the balls of my feet. I think most women can relate to this one. Definitely not that easy as I’m also a size 11 shoe and have Lymphedema.
  • Limiting Swollen Lipedema / Lymphedema (Lipo-Lymphedema) Legs: It’s trouble enough dealing with sitting for hours and what that does to a person’s circulation, but it’s all but impossible to elevate your legs on a flight (unless you’re in First class). For a woman like me with Lipo-lymphedema, it wouldn’t make much of a difference anyway. With the air pressure from long international travel legs and domestic flights, I have to be prepared that I will swell, even with compression garments on. For this, my game plan is usually bring some water retention friendly teas and supplements with me, stay hydrated, give myself a self-MLD massage before and after the flight (plus, a couple days after), wear my Bioflect compression and plan to take it easy and get extra sleep the first couple days of my trip. Avoiding alcohol helps to prevent painful swelling too, but you know I love a good maitai cocktail. And of course, I will find my way to a swimming pool and that seems to help.
  • Preventing bruises and cuts: Traveling with luggage, distracted partygoers accidentally kicking me, stumbling over tiny potholes, and bumping into hotel furniture cutting me on my leg are all ways that the tendency and risk for Lipedema Ladies to be easily injured is very real for me. I believe after my dream travel destination of Antigua, I counted approximately 8 bruises on my legs. In Chicago, that sharp edged chair in the beautiful luxury room I reserved sliced a bit cut on my chin that has now turned into a scar, but could’ve resulted in a difficult to treat infection or cellulitis. I’m lucky these things healed, but its all par for the course for Lipedema ladies who want to travel.
  • Airplane Seats and Lipedema Hips Weren’t Made for Each Other: Newsflash to the airlines, but we could use a few inclusive economy seat selections that are made for wider hips and women with our medical condition. There is no way that I’m buying an extra seat (that seems like discrimination), so I guess I would have to start aiming for Business or First Class to avoid this anyway. I may as well try to use my Travel Agent discount to score those first class seats. My hips are usually between 50-52 inches, with an inch or two making the difference between bearable and uncomfortable. Lipedema curves are just different!
  • What to PACK When Traveling with Lipedema: I need to do an entire blog series on this subject because the struggle never ends. Finding cute outfits for my dream solo getaway or baecation is tough! For Antigua, I did use Fashion Nova Curve and shopped online. I wasn’t disappointed, but most of their clothes aren’t made to fit our body type. I get creative with brightly-colored maxi dresses, wide-leg jumpsuits, and super stretchy jeans/jeggings. Swimsuits aren’t too difficult to find if you’re willing to put one on, it’s just finding one that favors you and a light cover-up you can live with. I love finding cute beachwear and resort fashion to try that is flowly, bold, feminine yet comfortable.

What types of things do you think about before you travel? What do you pack? Give me some ideas for my trip in the comments!

Check out my Lipedema Must Haves list on Amazon!

One thought on “Traveling with Lipedema: What to Consider

  1. Hi I am so happy I stumbled upon your site and love the information you have here. It makes me feel better knowing I am not alone in the struggles. I’m stage 2 and fighting to avoid 3. Since menopause I have it in my arms and back. I’m going to check out some of your links and looking for cute clothes as well. Thank you! Congratulations on becoming a travel agent!

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