Whether you’re off to the beach, the mountains or the lake, with a little planning, you can eat healthy and still enjoy your vacation.
Avoid all-or-nothing thinking
While you may be committed to eating healthy while at home, vacation can often become an excuse to splurge and overindulge. But overeating and choosing high calorie, high fat foods that you wouldn’t normally eat can leave you feeling bloated and uncomfortable. Instead of thinking of vacation as a total break from your normal healthy eating pattern, think of it as an opportunity to incorporate favorite treats in moderation into your normal diet.
Related Link: Quick Guide to Portion Control Sizes
Treat yourself once per day
Going to the beach and passing on your favorite fried shrimp or denying yourself an ice cream cone with your kids would be unthinkable! Allow yourself one treat or indulgence per day, but make smart choices at your other meals. If you go out for pancakes for breakfast, choose a light salad or sandwich for lunch. This plan will allow you to enjoy favorite splurges without significantly exceeding your calorie limit each day.
Related Link: How Many Calories Do You Really Need?
Fill up on fruits and veggies
Fresh fruits and vegetables are naturally low in calories and fat and high in filling fiber. Start your meal with a salad instead of reaching for the breadbasket to fill up on less calories. Just be sure to limit high calorie toppings like cheese, and limit the amount of dressing you use. When eating out, ask to substitute steamed veggies or fresh fruit in place of high-calories sides like French fries and creamy coleslaw. Reach for fresh whole fruits, such as apples, bananas, pears and oranges for a portable snack to take to the beach, on a hiking trip, and wherever your adventures may take you. Aim for five servings of fruits and vegetables daily to balance out higher calorie indulgences.
Add in activity
There are endless fun and family-friendly ways to be active while on vacation. If you’re sightseeing, walk rather than taking a bus, enjoy a walk on the beach after dinner or ride bikes in the park. Increasing your activity level above your usual will help compensate for any extra calories you consume, and you won’t even realize you’re exercising.
Focus on fun, family and friends
Instead of planning your vacation around food, focus on enjoying time with loved ones, fun activities and beautiful scenery. After all, these are the things that make a vacation special.
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