When you’re looking to unwind, celebrate life, and discover new experiences, there’s nothing better than a vacation. But it can also bring with it a lot of doubt regarding what to eat, especially if you’re on a diet or don’t want to fall off the healthy eating bandwagon. It is easy to leave your rational self and healthy habits behind when you start off on an adventure to a new, exotic destination. And it can be extremely tempting to try the local cuisine. Fortunately, there are ways to avoid falling into the unhealthy eating trap.
Here are 7 great ways to continue making healthy choices while on vacation and still enjoy yourself in the process.
Avoid Skipping Meals
When you’re on vacation, it can be easy to get caught up in all the beautiful new sights and experiences. You sometimes have to resist the urge to keep going instead of stopping for meals. Skipping meals is not a good idea as fatigue and hunger can quickly get in the way of your great day and challenge your efforts to stay healthy. It is important to eat regularly to keep your energy levels up. If you are on the road and can’t stop often for meals, pack healthy food that you can eat on the go.
If you stay active throughout the duration of your trip, you can worry less about putting on those extra pounds. When you plan your itinerary for the day, opt to walk more, rather jumping into a car or train. You’ll get to see and experience more of your destination this way, while being able to eat more. If your hotel has a pool, going for a daily swim is a great way to stay fit. So go ahead and get out of bed for that early morning hike or take a leisurely stroll after dinner.
Make Better Menu Choices
Whichever part of the world you’re in, it’s not difficult to make healthier choices when eating out. Whenever possible, order healthy foods that appeal to you without feeling like you’re depriving yourself. You can make any meal healthier simply by changing your choice of sauce or condiment. Go or mustard instead of mayonnaise, chicken instead of red meat or whole wheat bread instead of white bread.
Buy Fresh Fruits and Vegetables
One of the best parts of visiting a new country is picking up fresh produce from local farmers’ markets. If you are visiting a tropical location, you may come across some fruits and vegetables that you’ve never seen before. These market visits also offer an excellent glimpse into the local culture and people. Additionally, you get to sample the freshest food and eat like the locals. Locals markets are also a great place to pick up snacks, jams, soups, local souvenirs and the like.
Whether you’re touring the city or out on nature walk, it’s always a good idea to carry snacks. If you don’t eat throughout the day, you will end up bingeing on the first meal you come across. Take snacks like fresh fruit, protein bars, dried fruits, nuts and other healthy snacks. You can also cut up some vegetables and carry a healthy dip, like hummus. Opt for snacks that stabilize your blood sugar and keep you full for extended periods of time.
Stay in a Room with a Kitchenette
Getting a room with an attached kitchen for long stays, will not only save you time and money but also keep you healthy. Cooking your meals from healthy, fresh produce bought nearby is a great way to experience the local food, in addition to sticking to your diet. This doesn’t mean that you can’t eat most of your meals out. One of the perks of a vacation is eating out. But having your own fridge, sink, and stove, gives you the luxury of preparing healthy meals and snacks. You can consider a hotel with a suite option or go with an Airbnb as these come with a kitchen in most cases.
Don’t Get Stressed Out
We all start our vacations with the best intentions, but things don’t always go as planned. If you decide to eat food that’s not the healthiest throughout your trip, don’t get stressed out about it. Remember that a vacation is supposed to be a time to rejuvenate and relax. So don’t drive yourself insane by counting every calorie. Just make the best food choices you can and most importantly, enjoy yourself and worry about your diet once you’re back to your regular routine.
The struggle is real when it comes to eating healthy when traveling. But, the good news is that there are some simple, yet effective ways to continue your healthy habits, no matter which part of the world you’re in. The most important things to keep in mind is maintaining balance and avoiding stress, which is the whole point of going on a vacation. By being prepared and following the tips mentioned above, you can have the holiday of your dreams, while staying happy and healthy.
writes on health and food at Every Nutrient! She’s written a whole other bunch of articles that deals with health and fitness foods for people from all walks of life. Every Nutrient focuses on effective changes that you can make to live a healthy and fulfilled life!