It’s summertime and that means it’s time to get ready for your next vacation! For many of us, this is a time of relaxation and rejuvenation which usually includes eating out more than usual.
But if you are trying to eat healthier in general or stay on track with your diet while away from home, then you may be nervous about what type of food will be available at the restaurants where you’ll be dining.
Read our blog post to find out how to eat healthy on vacation!
How to Eat Healthy on Vacation: 10 Tips for Eating Better While Traveling
1. Bring healthy snacks to eat at the airport.
You should always have healthy snacks with you, but this is especially important when traveling on an airplane.
Bringing healthy snacks to the airport will help ease your travel anxiety and give you something nutritious to eat while waiting in lines or checking on travel destination activities.
Some great snack ideas are hard-boiled eggs, apple sauce, dried fruits, and nuts.
Eating a healthy snack at the airport before your flight will help you avoid feeling starved when it’s time for meal service on board.
Snacks can also give you something to tide you over until dinner after arriving at your destination.
2. Eat a healthy breakfast before leaving for your vacation activities each day.
Breakfast is one of the most important meals, so it’s worth taking time to eat a healthy breakfast and start the day feeling good about your choices.
A good idea is to make overnight oats ahead of time and packing them in individual containers for each morning you’re gone.
An even better idea would be to pack things that don’t require cooking like granola, yogurt, protein bars, or fruits with nut butter.
3. Stick to our normal eating habits and don’t skip meals.
The best way to have a successful vacation is to stick with your usual eating habits.
If you’re used to having one large meal per day, then that should be your goal on the road as well.
However, skip meals at your own risk. By skipping meals, we can create more hunger and crave snacks or unhealthy foods which will likely lead to weight gain.
So don’t skip any meals and get in your three healthy, well-balanced ones per day – breakfast, lunch, dinner.
This will also help you keep track of how much food you’re consuming which is important for a successful vacation because we want to avoid overeating.
4. Visit a local farmers market.
One of the best things to do when traveling is to learn about local cuisine. And one of the best ways to do this is to visit a local farmers market.
When you visit a farmer’s market, get to know the ingredients in the food and how they are used.
This will give you ideas for new ways to prepare your favorite dishes at home as well!
And lastly, feel free to ask questions about what is available or how something is cooked.
Farmers markets are often a great place to get information about the culture and cuisine of the area as well.
Asking questions, getting to know local ingredients, and exploring new ways to prepare your favorite dishes are just some of the advantages that come with visiting a farmers market when you’re on vacation!
5. Make your own meals if possible.
Get access to a kitchen by staying in an apartment or condo rather than a hotel.
The more you can make your own meals, the healthier and cheaper they will be.
This way, you’ll get to try out all the local ingredients and recipes that you picked up from the local farmer’s market!
For a detailed clean eating grocery list to take with you on your next shopping trip, sign up below to get a FREE printable version!
6. Plan ahead before dining at restaurants.
When it comes to ordering at restaurants while traveling– know what you want before you get there!
Commit to eating healthy by deciding on your allowed food list before you head into restaurants – preferably at least 24 hours in advance.
This helps to engage your prefrontal cortex, the part of your brain that is responsible for planning and decision-making, so you can make the best choices when ordering.
Having constraints can also help narrow down your options and keep you from feeling overwhelmed.
You’ll also feel more in control when making healthy decisions, which is a major key to success!
Don’t forget to plan your “cheat” foods too, you are on vacation after all!
Sample your share of gelato in Italy, croissants in France, or beignets in New Orleans!
Decide on what and how much to eat ahead of time, and just keep practicing making an agreement with yourself and honoring and following through with it.
7. Eat slowly to prevent overeating.
Eating slowly is a good way to prevent overeating while traveling.
This tip is especially helpful if you are on vacation in the US and eating out at restaurants where the portions tend to be bigger than what you’re used to.
Don’t eat so quickly that your body doesn’t even register when it’s full! Eating slower will allow your stomach to signal your brain that you’re full, and prevent overeating.
Another reason why eating slowly is important – when you eat slowly, the food actually tastes better! How great is it to enjoy your meal instead of feeling like you have no choice but to scarf down a plate of fries?
If you are vacationing in certain parts of Europe, you’re more likely to be served smaller portion sizes and sit through multi-course meals that may last over 2 hours!
Many world cultures take their time to appreciate their meals to wind down from their daily grind. It’s something we can all learn from!
8. Keep active daily
Take at least 30 minutes for an active break every day. At a minimum, go outside for a stroll after lunch or dinner and just explore the local scene on foot.
If you are on a beach vacation, head to the water and enjoy either a swim or some body surfing.
If you are staying in an urban area, find local parks with walking, hiking, or biking paths where you can get out of your hotel room for a little while.
Find creative ways to work in 30 minutes of active body movement, and you will feel refreshed and energized to enjoy the rest of your vacation.
9. Stay hydrated.
Drink lots of water each day.
It’s important to stay hydrated when you are on vacation as it’s easy to forget about drinking enough liquids and replace them with beer or other alcoholic drinks that don’t have the same effect as a glass of cold water.
Pack up some reusable water bottles so you can take one with you everywhere, and drink the fresh, filtered tap water where possible, instead of buying disposable plastic bottled waters from the grocery store.
You’ll be helping our environment while saving your cash at the same time!
10. Manage stress
Being on the move, planning, and going from one activity to the next during your travel can be overwhelming.
Ease your stress by taking a few minutes each day to stop, do some deep breaths and focus on the present moment.
How are you feeling right now? How can you make this experience feel better for yourself? How is that sound outside of your window making you feel today?
This will bring awareness back into your life and help you get through the busy moments with more ease.
Managing your stress will help prevent weight gain from emotional eating during the trip.
Balance the excitement to check off every to-do travel list with downtime and relaxation so you won’t need a vacation after the vacatIon!
So, there you have it! These are the 10 tips on eating healthy while traveling. Now that your appetite is whetted with some new ideas on how to eat better while vacationing, we hope you’ll give them a try and enjoy your next trip more than ever before.
Sharing is caring! Do you have more tips on how to eat healthy on vacation? Let us know in the comments below!