Last Updated on June 22, 2020 by Laura Cooper
You’ve worked hard for your bikini body and a figure that will look great with your on-vacation glow, but you don’t want to leave your health plan at home when travelling. Just because you’re not in charge of creating and cooking your meals and your days are spent relaxing doesn’t mean you can’t still eat healthy on vacation and take care of your body.
Whether you’re buying snacks on the road or spending a week at an all-inclusive, follow these how-to tips to maintain your healthy diet while travelling:
1. Pack snacks:
Whether you’re visiting a resort in the Caribbean or taking a road-trip with the family, bring a stash of healthy snacks that can help curb sweet cravings between meals. Being able to control what you snack on and assure you’re choosing healthy options for at least part of your day will help keep your diet intact. Depending on travel restrictions, try protein bars, dried fruit, fresh fruit and vegetables, dips and trail mix for light, healthy snacks. For vacations on the beach, choose granola bars that don’t have chocolate coating in case of melting.
2. Stay hydrated:
Research shows that the same area of your brain controls hunger and thirst, and oftentimes when you think you’re hungry, your body is just asking to be hydrated. Keeping on top of your water intake will not only keep you hydrated when you’re sweating on the beach, but can also keep you from extra snacking between meals. Drink a full glass of water before each full meal, so you won’t be tempted to overeat, and carry a reusable water bottle with you for cost-effective hydration. While on vacation, your body will go through changes from lack of sleep, time changes, and the busyness of sightseeing: you don’t want to get sick and lack energy from simply not drinking enough water.
3. Don’t drink your calories:
If you’re travelling somewhere in the Caribbean, be sure to try milk straight from a freshly cracked coconut, and later in pina colada form…but don’t overdo it. When on vacation, you’re going to have lots of choices of local delicacies and treats. You don’t want to drink all your calories (depending on how it’s made, one pina colada can have around 500 calories!). Drink a glass of water between each alcoholic beverage: you’ll stay hydrated, sober, and keep from filling up on slushy, sweet drinks. Enjoy your all-inclusive vacation with drinks when you need to cool down, or with dinner, but don’t binge on alcohol. Alcohol and sugar will also interrupt your sleep schedule, which will lead to more snacking and poor health choices.
4. Don’t forget to get active:
Balance the buffets, bar visits on the beach, and local treats with partaking in all sorts of activities while on vacation. Wake up early and go for a walk on the beach, jump in the pool with the kids, or take part in dance lessons offered by resort staff. If you’re on a family road-trip closer to home, make frequent stops to stretch your legs and explore new cities or areas to burn off calories from dining out. Remembering to eat healthy on vacation is important, but burning off extra energy and calories will make you feel just as good.
5. Enjoy local fruit and vegetables:
If you’re visiting a tropical destination, satisfy your sweet tooth with fresh-from-the-tree local fruit like pineapple, mango, and papaya rather than desserts and food filled with fat that will bust your hard-earned figure. Don’t totally restrict yourself from indulging…why visit France without tasting cheese, or a hot destination without drinks and ice cream? For more local travel, visit local farmers’ markets for home-cooked food and fruit stands. Balance healthy options with indulgences to feel better about your food options, to taste-test a bit of everything at the all-inclusive buffets, and to ensure you have enough energy to enjoy your vacation…not just the eats! If you’re staying somewhere with a la carte restaurants, try and order at least one meal a day similar to what you’d be eating at home to keep your nutrition plan on track. Making sure you eat healthy on vacation doesn’t have to be difficult – it can be both delicious and fun!
Don’t let vacation be an excuse to not eat healthy: with a bit of pre-planning and thought, it can be done. To stay healthy while traveling, don’t forget your daily vitamins, and your pre-trip research for dietary restrictions like gluten-free resorts.