Whether due to limited healthy food choices, lack of kitchen facilities or the temptation of energy-dense foods and all-you-can-eat offerings, maintaining healthy eating habits can be more challenging when travelling. However, with some forethought and planning, it is possible to enjoy your holiday without your healthy eating habits falling by the wayside.
Here are a few tips to consider:
- Choose your accommodation. Rather than a hotel, consider booking self-contained accommodation so you have access to a kitchen. Even if you are out all day and want to sample the local cuisine, you can still make your own healthy breakfast and on some days pack lunch or cook dinner at home if you’ve eaten lunch out. This can also be a bit of a cost-saver, leaving you extra money to spend on sightseeing or holiday shopping.
- Pack your own snacks. Finding nutritious snacks when away from home can be challenging. By packing your own healthy options, you’ll always have something on hand if you get hungry between meals. Good choices include small packets of unsalted nuts or trail mix, roasted chickpeas, wholegrain crackers and low sugar muesli bars. Also, try to stock up on fresh fruit whenever you can.
- Portion caution: Whether it’s an all-you-can-eat buffet or multiple courses, it’s easy to overeat when dining out. Consider ordering two entrees rather than an entrée and main, and share dessert with your travel partner. At the buffet, be selective and have a small serve of each of the most appealing dishes on offer but avoid the temptation to pile up your plate or go back for multiple courses. And remember, it’s ok to leave some food on your plate if you are full.
- Keep hydrated: It can be easy to neglect fluids if you haven’t got water on tap. If you are staying somewhere with a kitchen this will be less of an issue but if you are in a hotel, consider stocking up on bottled water or take advantage of the tea and coffee facilities, but choose more tea and herbal tea over coffee for hydration. You could also pack a reusable drink bottle to fill and take with you during the day.
- Go easy on the alcohol. Holidays are a time when it can be easy to overindulge on alcohol. Avoid the negative consequences of excess alcohol by sticking to a glass or two with dinner and alternating alcoholic with non-alcoholic drinks such as sparkling mineral or soda water. You’ll not only save money but you will be able to make the most of your travel time, without having to deal with a hangover.
Implement these suggestions and you will not only return from holidays feeling healthy and refreshed but also without a few extra kilograms on board!