Vacation plans? Or perhaps you’re already on one? Here are some simple reminders that can work with your intention to optimize your health while away from the home front. With a little mindfulness and some determination, you can return home relaxed, unwound, rejuvenated and not tipping the scales in a direction that neutralizes or detracts from the other benefits gained by being on a holiday.
Let’s start with healthy dining. Here’s an article that outlines “10 Ways to Eat Healthy While on Vacation”
- Think Savor, Lose the Splurge. … Treat yourself to quality instead of quantity; enjoy some exotic fare you can’t get where you live, but in moderation. Savor each bite with right-sizing for your stomach … and wallet or purse. Share a dessert and/or an entree with someone you love! Pack transportable fare finds in your suitcase (if customs allow) to share with kin back home.
- Don’t see what you want? Ask! … Ask your waitperson to prepare your meal according to your dietary needs and wants; restaurants that care about their reputations aim to please.
- Samples provide the same flavor as super-sized indulgences … Your diary, blog or FaceBook post can still regale your friends and family with the same color, adjectives and superlatives.
- Walking It off … If you do a little splurging in the caloric or portion size department, balance it out with a brisk walk on the beach, through a long-anticipated gallery, or some exotic locale
- Daily Treats … Some of this author’s favorites include: Hawai’ian pineapple a few seconds after being pulled from the plantation, Tahitian vanilla, guanabana cut open by machete by a tour guide straight from the fields in the highlands near Puerto Vallarta (or in a milkshake in a little ‘soda’ (restaurant) across from a topiary garden in Zarcero, Costa Rica, feijoa desserts or savory kumara dishes in New Zealand. If you want to try some superb international fare without even needing a passport, try teff cuisine at an Ethiopian restaurant (Uchenna) in Colorado Springs, CO or authentic Mexican molé entrees at the Red Iguana in Salt Lake City, Utah (in case you’re not far from either of those places while on the road)
- Seek out healthy menu choices that are also items you enjoy; look for heart-healthy and/or other icons now commonplace on many menus and then narrow those down further by what appeals to you
- BYOB: Bring a few healthy (lightweight, easily transportable) snacks for your hotel or stateroom, and ignore the mini-bar; empty a convenient refillable (lightweight metal works well) water bottle before entering airport security and fill ASAP after you land with good water.
- Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate … Try drinking one, or even two glasses of water before each meal and see if you can order a 2-item instead of a 3-item entree, or perhaps share a few healthy appetizers
- Five servings of fruits and veggies per day is also good advice for the road
- Push the plate away when you’re done; if a ‘to-go box’ doesn’t make sense, let the waiter do the recycling of the leftovers. No need to starve yourself; eat when you’re hungry, but just say no when your appestat reads full.
Next week we’ll look at heathy vacation exercise. 🙂
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