All too often, vacations encourage travelers to forget their normal eating habits and indulge in high-calorie cocktails, gut-busting buffets and decadent desserts. You want to enjoy yourself, but not at the expense of your well-being. The following are some tips for how to eat healthy on vacation so you can get more out of your trip and keep up your energy.
A Cornucopia of Healthy Options
Vacation traditionally coincides with numerous seasonal fruits and vegetables, so take advantage of the abundance of healthy options available at local restaurants. Load up your breakfast plate with fresh fruit and native berries you may not have tried before. For lunch and dinner, add a large salad or a serving of grilled vegetables instead of carb-loaded baked potatoes or french fries. Also, seek out local farmers markets for fresh produce to keep on hand in the car or where you’re staying. This will save your wallet from late-night room service or pizza deliveries.
Vacationing at the beach or near a coastline yields fresh seafood that is not only light, but also a local indulgence. Watch out for heavy sauces and opt for freshly steamed options. Lobster and shrimp are high-end dishes if you want to splurge, and they won’t weigh you down like a steak would as long as you manage your portions.
Speaking of portions, buffets are traps that encourage overeating. Avoiding them can help you choose healthier options. Don’t be afraid to ask for a to-go box for leftovers, even from a classier restaurant — in fact, be sure to do this if the restaurant was on the pricier side. For this reason, most hotels provide mini fridges and microwaves so you can get two meals out of a larger dinner. If you are indulging in a little dessert, share it so you can enjoy the taste with only half the calories.
Learn more about healthy eating.*
Slow Down and Enjoy
You’re on vacation, so you don’t need to rush through your lunches like you might during your nine-to-five grind. Now is your chance to slow down and have a leisurely meal, allowing you to feel full earlier and avoid that post-meal sluggishness when you’ve eaten too much. USA Today Travel recommends avoiding fast food and choosing sit-down meals in nicer restaurants as much as possible. You’ll likely have healthier options for side dishes and you can just turn down the endless bread basket when it’s offered. Your servers can also suggest healthier items from the menu.
Not only do you need to know how to eat healthy on vacation, but you should try to drink healthy as well — and nothing beats water as your drink of choice. Water is your best friend for healthy living all the time, but it is especially important when you’re on vacation. Drinking plenty of water will hydrate you and help keep you cool, and it’s one of Mother Nature’s best remedies after a night of dehydrating cocktails.
Pack your bags without the junk food this season, and you’ll improve your vacation simply by improving your diet.
Consult your doctor before beginning any diet or exercise program.