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{VIDEO} How To Eat Healthy On Vacation

Tips and tricks on how to eat healthy on vacation and stick to a nourishing diet. Make sure your next trip is fun and relaxing without going crazy at the buffet table with these helpful suggestions.

This is a post I’ve been crazy excited about writing, but honestly haven’t had 5 minutes to sit down and write it because I’ve been travelling so much! Unlike most people who can actually get work done on a plane, any mode of transportation makes me conk out completely. Planes are my equivalent of a sleeping pill (I know…I’m lucky).

But I’m finally home and ready to share my healthy eating tips with you guys! Since my life is pretty much a non-stop series of travels (Malibu, Mexico, Arizona), I’ve had to learn how to eat in a way that makes me feel awesome even when I’m not in my kitchen. It’s taken years of practice, but I’ve learned a few tips along the way.

But before we jump into my tips, I actually shot a video while I was in Arizona on what I ate for a full day there. This was a typical day of eats when I’m in not in my kitchen. As you can see…I eat A LOT.

Watch what I eat in a day while on vacation!

TIPS FOR HOW TO EAT HEALTHY ON VACATION

This is basically the rule of life. When in doubt, pack snacks. But this is especially true on vacation when your next meal or snack isn’t nearly as structured as it is in your day-to-day life. To avoid going HAM on a bag of lays potato chips, pack some homemade or healthy pre-packed snacks. In terms of homemade, these are my favorites:

Blueberry Muffin Energy Balls
Healthy Trail Mix
Peanut Butter Granola Bars
SuperSeed Crackers

And for pre-packed I like to carry these around with me:

Dried Mango or Persimmons
Nuts – I like almonds
All-Natural Organic Fruit Leathers
Fresh fruit

2. Go grocery shopping

First thing I do when I travel somewhere is check out the closest grocery store. If this isn’t an option (aka Uruapan, Mexico), c’est la vie! But if you’re somewhere relatively metropolitan or have a car, find a grocery store. Try to pick up your usual suspects or non-perishables that you can keep with you wherever you’re staying.

If you’re staying in a place with a kitchen, pick up some staples. While we were in San Miguel and Scottsdale, we had kitchens so I picked up extra snacks (fresh fruit and veggies) along with breakfast food. Not only is this a budget saver, but it also ensures you’re getting in healthy food within a more relaxed schedule.

3. A Salad a Day

I try to stick to this rule while I’m travelling. If I can eat at least one salad a day (can range from a small side salad to a large dinner salad), I know I can feel good about myself. I focus on trying to get more veggies in, instead of obsessing about the not-so-great foods I may be eating (ahem tacos…)

4. Eat Breakfast In

If you have access to a kitchen, I highly recommend stocking up on breakfast food. Even if you don’t, there’s a lot of great options if all you’re working with is a fridge! When C and I were in San Diego a while ago, we did a Trader Joe’s run and ate overnight oats for breakfast everyday. We requested a fridge and were able to throw together an easy and healthy breakfast.

When I was in Arizona I brought some packets of Vega because I knew our rooms had blenders. Each morning I whipped up a green smoothie. My family may have thought I was crazy, but I felt good about it.

5. Scout menus

The control-freak in me likes doing this anyway, but a great way to prepare for meals out is to scout the menus if you know where you’re going. More often than not, you’ll find a dish or two that you know you’ll enjoy and is relatively healthy. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box either. I’m known to order two appetizers or an appetizer and two sides if I can’t find an entree I like. Mix and match to put together a meal you know you’ll enjoy.

(but please don’t be that person who requests every aspect of a dish to be changed, unless you have a life-threatening allergy…just saying).

6. Relax

It’s important to be open-minded while travelling. I know for some people who are on a more strict diet, vacations can be a bit nerve-wracking, but that’s not the point! It’s okay to deviate and get a little bit crazy. It won’t derail you from your overall lifestyle unless you let it. So if you went for that triple chocolate fudge cake for dessert, don’t punish yourself by skipping breakfast the next morning and throwing your whole day off. Indulge yourself, just don’t view it as a black and white thing. There’s always room for a little bit of everything.

Likewise, be mindful of the people you’re travelling with. Something that I’m trying to be more respectful about is ensuring that my food choices don’t impede on other people’s fun. If my family wants to go out for pizza, which I generally don’t feel awesome about eating, I’m not going to rain on their parade. I’ll load up on snacks and get a salad with dinner. It’s no biggie. And similarly, I find people are a lot more accommodating towards your food choices when you aren’t annoying about theirs. I think my family was a lot more open-minded about going to The Herb Box and True Food Kitchen when I didn’t put up a fuss about eating at Earl’s Greasy Eats…

Any tips to add on eating healthy on vacation?

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The No. 1 Diet Mistake You Make on Vacation

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All that time you spend getting “bikini ready” for a beach vacation can be undone with this one very common thing. With each bite, each sip, you can undo your very hard work and make it that much harder to resume normal life at home.

What you’re eating (or for that matter, not eating) is the biggest diet mistake you make on vacation. Fortunately, it’s one of the easiest to address and still have as much fun as you banked on!

I’ve been in vacation mode for two months; my family packed up everything we own in storage and we’ve been on a cross country road trip since May. It’s been incredible to say the least, but it’s very evident for us and our daughter where the biggest problem lies-our diets. It’s hard not to want to enjoy all the local flavors and fare. That’s one thing when you’re in green-minded Colorado; but since we hit New Orleans, Disney World, and Savannah, well, we could have used a refresher course.

RELATED: 9 Places You Can Workout Next to a Celebrity in NYC and LA

Like us, it’s all too easy to give in to every single temptation. Can you say microbrew beer in Denver? Beignets in New Orleans? Fried chicken and biscuits in Savannah? It takes a toll on your mood, energy, and how well that bikini fits. Here’s how to enjoy the right foods while on vacation.

Enjoy One Big Splurge Meal

Every town has that one thing they’re famous for. Be it the aforementioned deep-fried menu, pizza in New York, or BBQ in Texas, you should let yourself indulge but do so in moderation like you would anything else. Choose one meal or one day when you’re really going to let yourself taste all of the local fare, then be a conscious eater the rest of the time. You can still have shrimp on the coast, but don’t fry it. You can still have chowder in Boston, but grab a cup instead of a bowl.

Eat at Home

Book a rental house (or extended-stay hotel) where you have access to a fully stocked kitchen instead of a standard hotel room, then grocery shop for essentials. This saves a ton of money on your travel food bill and gives you the most control over what you’re eating. Sources like AirBnB can often turn out to be cheaper than a hotel stay, plus you get all the creature comforts of home, like a blender for fresh smoothies, a full-sized fridge for fresh fruits and sandwich makings, and a grill for light dinners at home with local, fresh-caught seafood.

RELATED: Grill These Shrimp and Sausage Bayou Kabobs

Visit the Farmers’ Market

No matter where you’re staying, this is consistently my favorite “tourist” spot in any city we visit. It’s a front row seat to really take in the local people and culture as well as sample some of the best fresh food in the area. Pick up snacks for the day or the week, like fresh berries and other fruit, fresh veggies for packing a picnic, homemade tortillas for wraps, local honey for your coffee or tea, and any other number of jams, soups, and the like. Plus this is the spot to take home a souvenir from a local artist.

Pack Brown Bags

If you know you’ve got a long day ahead trekking through museums, relaxing at the beach, or taking a hike, do not depend on whatever food options may or may not be available. Be prepared by packing brown bags or a small cooler. Picnics not only make for cozy vacation memories, but you can rest assured that you’re not stuck eating corn dogs from a beach cart or fried catfish at the trail head.

Don’t Forget Your Snacks

Be sure to keep a few protein bars, fresh pieces of fruit, or even something like a GoPicnic snack kit in your purse, backpack, or fanny pack (if that’s your style!). When hunger strikes, you’re not left to do that mad dash to a convenience store to grab the first heat-lamp hot dog and potato chips you can find.

As for fitness, the little stuff adds up. It’s like the WYCWYC, What You Can, When You Can, campaign created by Roni Noone and Carla Birnberg. Swimming in the hotel pool or in the ocean, chasing kids across the beach, walking through museums and local tours, carrying heavy shopping bags, pacing the airport during a delayed flight-it all adds up. Most of us stay much more active on vacation than we think we do!

Fix your food, and you’ll feel better during and after your escape from reality!

By Brandi Koskie for DietsInReview.com

  • By DietsInReview.com

Hey, summer’s not over yet—there’s still time to squeeze in a vacation (or staycation)! So how can you enjoy your time off without going overboard with not-exactly-healthy food? Turn to Well+Good Council member and nutrition expert McKel Hill of Nutrition Stripped, who has a few smart ideas for eating what you love…while still feeling your food-fueled best.

Maintaining your health routine while on vacation isn’t just about food, working out, and picking the best options to eat. It’s about releasing stress, having fun, exploring, soaking up nature, and spending quality time with loved ones (or solo).

We don’t need studies to show that vacation is good for us, but in case you want hard evidence: People who take vacations see greater success at work, and there are (at least!) four science-based reasons we all need to take that OOO status.

Convinced yet? Great! Here are a couple of my personal tips to explore.

Photo: Stocksy/HEX

Let go

How can you give yourself more wiggle room to enjoy foods, drinks, and activities that you normally don’t do? Release “shoulds” from conversations with yourself. Remember to stay present with the foundation that you’ve built in your health routine. Going on vacation is just part of life, so this is a good time to put those tools you’ve been practicing to the test.

Find some health-focused spots

If you can find some comfort in knowing you have a couple go-to places that you can grab nutrient-dense foods, make that your spot to check in daily! I always make the first stop a market, grocery store, or farmers market where I can stock up on essentials.

Otherwise, do a quick Google search or talk to the locals about where their favorite health food places are. This is just one example of how to still stick to your foundation while still being flexible and choosing options that make you feel good.

Keep up with habits you know make you feel your best

Drink lots of water and eat veggies (fiber!), healthy fats, fresh fruit, and protein. We know that these whole foods keep you feeling your best—with everything from digestion to stabilizing your blood sugars—so you’ll have great energy to enjoy your vacation. If you’re prone to digestion issues while you travel, you’re not alone. Be sure to pack probiotics, digestive enzymes, or any supplements you know keep your digestion on track! If you need help, email me at [email protected]

When all is said and done, vacation should feel amazing—that’s what it’s all about. Enjoy!

McKel Hill, RDN, is a registered dietician nutritionist and the founder of Nutrition Stripped, which treats healthy food as more than just fuel—and gives expert advice on using its nutrients and flavors to make you feel amazing.

What should McKel write about next? Send your questions and suggestions to [email protected]

How to Stick to Your Diet While on Vacation

Illustration: Bee Johnson

Sticking to your diet while you’re somewhere familiar is easier than trying to when you’re not. At home, your food choices may be clean and healthy, predictable even. But hop on a plane, take a drive in a car, or catch a train to a new destination, and all bets are off. Eating healthy when you’re out of your comfort zone can be tricky, if not downright difficult. And sticking to your diet while on vacation certainly fits that bill.

“When we travel, our environment changes,” says diabetes educator Megrette Fletcher, RD, cofounder of The Center for Mindful Eating. “Your habits change. The travel environment is very stimulating. That can make us feel less vigilant.”

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Feelings of insecurity and fear mingle with hunger and anxiety. It’s a dynamic environment and one that can lead directly to food overreactions. “Routines get broken as well as the control you may have over what you eat or when you eat it,” says Susan Mitchell, PhD, RDN, cohost of the biweekly podcast Breaking Down Nutrition on foodfitfabulous.com. “Our best intentions go out the window.” This means that trying to stick to your diet while vacationing can be frustrating and tough.

But good news: It is possible for you to eat—and even splurge a little—while you’re traveling for business or pleasure, without going overboard. It just requires a little extra planning, strategizing, and willpower. Here’s how.

4 STEPS FOR SMARTER CHOICES

1. Splurge Wisely
You want to enjoy that superdelicious gelato you can’t find at home.
THE FIX: Cut back on calories a bit before you go. “I diet two days for every day I’m going to be on vacation,” says Julie Upton, RD, author of The Real Skinny. “So if I’m going away for 10 days, I eat really healthfully and cut back for 20 days before I’m leaving to account for the additional calories I’ll be eating on vacation.”
And when you’re full, stop. Overfilling yourself won’t make the food memory more potent. “Food is part of the enjoyment,” Fletcher says. “Even though you’re traveling and can’t take it with you, you don’t have to eat everything if you’re full. You can stop.”

2. Plan Your Meals
Hotel rooms are often ill-equipped for full meal service, so you dine out at every meal. That can really add up on your waistline, Upton says.
THE FIX: Eat out only once a day. If you’re driving, head for a grocery store that has its own salad bar rather than a fast-food joint. Bring foods with you, or do a quick grocery store run when you get to your destination and stock up, even if that means healthy frozen food options. Rent or stay in homes or hotels that have kitchenettes. This will help you eat a good breakfast and control snack and lunch portions.

3. Distract Yourself
Your flight is delayed three hours for “maintenance.” You could clean out 400 emails. Instead, you distract yourself with a 600-calorie cheeseburger and fries.
THE FIX: “If your habit is to go eat food, you may need to think about something else to fill that time,” says Fletcher. One idea: Go for a walk. Larger airports are a lot like cities with unique transit systems and fun stores.

4. Avoid the Triple Threat
“When going on vacation, we often think, “Anything goes!” which equals, “I’m eating whatever I want and drinking more than usual,”” says Upton. Alcohol is the triple threat when you’re traveling, she says. “It is high in calories, it stimulates your appetite, and it reduces your inhibitions toward junk food. Foods that you’d normally say are off-limits are suddenly just fine after a few drinks.”
THE FIX: For starters, stick with low-calorie alcoholic beverages, Upton says. Good picks: ultralight beers and distilled spirits mixed with calorie-free seltzer or other calorie-free beverages. “Avoid many of the popular summer signature blended drinks, as they are among the highest-calorie alcoholic beverages and generally have a lot of added sugars,” Upton adds.

Follow these four tips and you’ll be able to stick to your diet on vacation!

6 Ways to Stick to Your Diet While Traveling

There’s nothing like a great vacation or successful business trip—except when you return home feeling sluggish and bloated from overeating. Choosing healthy foods on-the-go doesn’t have to be impossible, though.

With a little preparation, you can plan for delicious, nutrient-rich options that help you stay on track with your fitness goals. Our experts share six ways to stick to your diet while traveling, so that you can enjoy any trip without worrying about packing on extra pounds.

Pack your own snacks or healthy favorites.

“If you’re able to pack snacks, do so,” says Becky Kerkenbush, a clinical dietitian with over 15 years of experience. “Being prepared with an array of healthy snacks keeps temptation at bay. Try string cheese, unsalted almonds, fresh fruit and vegetables, individual containers of hummus, yogurt, and cottage cheese, skim milk, hard-boiled eggs, sandwiches, water, whole grain crackers, or granola bars.”

Along with healthy snacks, come on-the-go workouts! Whether it’s a quick cardio session or a post-flight stretch, Aaptiv can help you stay on track and healthy while traveling.

Public Health and Nutrition Expert Dr. Dani Torchia recommends anything with plenty of protein, fiber, B vitamins, and mono- and polyunsaturated fats, instead of junk food or high-sugar items. To avoid hitting up the vending machine or making a poor food choice, try to keep snacks with you at all times, says Dr. Alex Robles of New York Presbyterian Hospital. Examples of these snacks include mixed nuts, homemade protein bars, natural nut butter, and rice cakes. And, if you’re flying, be sure to skip salty, greasy, and overpriced airport food, adds Chelsea Gloeckner, RD.

Bring your meals with you, if you can.

“Here’s my secret: I purchased a car cooler that plugs into the power source in my car,” shares Stephanie Lincoln, personal trainer and eating psychology expert. “I meal prep and bring lunch, dinner, snacks, and drinks for each day of a trip. So all I have to do is open up the cooler and grab my food. For flights, I bring a lunch box that has the insulation that you can freeze, and pack small containers of salad with protein, salad dressing, boiled eggs, carrot sticks, hummus, etc. Anything else goes in my carry-on: nuts, beef jerky, apples, individual packets of nut butter, individual cans of tuna or chicken salad, protein shakes, and a blender bottle.”

Keep in mind, though, that there might be some restrictions on fresh produce you can travel with while flying to certain international destinations. Always check with your airline to confirm what you food items you can and cannot bring in your check-in and carry-on bags.

Plan to cook, try local foods, or research restaurants in advance.

“Since travel often leads to an increase in eating out, the best way to stay on track with a healthy diet is to make a plan in advance,” say Registered Dietitian Erin Palinski-Wade. “Plan out when you will eat so you can determine where you will be eating and what foods will be available to you. This can cut down on impulsive food decisions, which can often lead to poorer choices. Having a plan for meals can also ensure you don’t wait too long in between meals to eat, which can lead to excessive hunger and cravings.”

If you’re not sure where to eat for your diet while traveling, use apps like Yelp or HappyCow to find local restaurants and eateries. Once you land at your destination, use these smart strategies from Kerkenbush and Dr. Torchia to avoid extra calories.

  • Pass on the processed rolls and unfamiliar non-butter spreads.
  • Start with a side salad or broth-based soup.
  • Look for protein and vegetable options.
  • Ask how food is prepared, and make requests for dressings on the side and grilled items, instead of fried.
  • Ask for substitutions, like a side salad instead of French fries.
  • Swap cheese for extra veggies, like onions, tomatoes, and lettuce.
  • Box part of your meal to prevent over-consuming calories.
  • Steer clear of buffets.
  • Drink water with lemon or plain iced tea, instead of soda.

Shop at a local grocery store.

Look for a local grocery store or market that sells fresh produce, versus relying on chain restaurants familiar from home. “Before we book a hotel or an Airbnb, my wife and I always check to see if there is a supermarket nearby,” says Dr. Robles. “If not, we look for another place. Everywhere we go, we buy enough food so that we can prepare a nice, healthy breakfast every single day. We usually buy eggs, spinach, peppers, onions, and avocados to prepare omelettes, and then eat lunch and dinner out. Alternatively, we buy a lot of fruits and vegetables and make homemade smoothies for breakfast.”

Don’t indulge for every single meal.

“It’s okay to indulge, especially if you’re at a restaurant that’s known for a particular dish. But be mindful to eat balanced meals—protein, vegetables, carbs, and healthy fats—the majority of the time you’re on your trip,” advises Aaptiv trainer Kelly Chase. “This will keep you feeling energized. Whether you’re traveling out of the country or in the U.S., be present in the moment and find healthy options that taste decadent.”

One way to hold yourself accountable for your diet while traveling? Use a salad-sized plate instead of a dinner-sized plate, says Personal Trainer Jill McKay, and prioritize anything green. “Fill it half full with veggies, leafy greens, or roasted veggies, if possible. French fries don’t count! Choose a palm size (about as thick as a deck of cards) of protein, and about a thumb size of healthy fat (olive oil, avocado slices, nuts, seeds, etc). If there’s any room left on your plate (there shouldn’t be much), enjoy a taste of whatever you want. If you go back for seconds, fill that plate half full of veggies again, and eat them.”

Another way to hold yourself accountable is with Aaptiv. We have workouts as short as just 10 minutes!

Stay hydrated.

“The first rule for healthy nutrition while on a trip is not to forget drinking water, especially when it’s hot outside, to avoid dehydration,” says Andy Groove, nutritionist and personal trainer. “Keep in mind that alcohol and coffee, as well as soda, does not replace water.”

“When you become even slightly dehydrated, your brain can misinterpret thirst for hunger, driving appetite and cravings,” explains Palinski-Wade. “On top of that, dehydration can drain energy levels, making you less likely to be physically active. Focus on carrying water with you and drinking at least 16 ounces with each meal. As a bonus, drinking water before meals can help with portion control!”

Be intentional about treats.

McKay also likes to pretend that buffets are a menu. She asks herself if she would really order everything if she had to pay for it all. The answer is usually no. This helps her pick and choose what she really wants, and then actually enjoy her selection. And, according to Kerkenbush, mindfully savoring your meal instead of using food to kill time or reward yourself is better for you in the long run, anyway.

However, don’t be afraid to treat yourself when it makes sense. “Last summer, I drove to New Orleans, Louisiana from the East Coast of Florida,” says Lincoln. “I was determined to stay on my eating plan the whole trip. But my one allowance was to have a beignet at Cafe Du Monde. When I am traveling, I allow for one treat. You can plan it out like I did or spontaneously use it if something really tickles your fancy. This is a great approach, because that treat then becomes the highlight of your trip. Instead of returning back from your trip feeling bloated, guilty, and heavier by a few pounds, you can return feeling great and with the memory of that one special treat that you enjoyed thoroughly, guilt-free.”

Don’t stress—just get back on track.

Above all, there’s a time and a place for healthy eating. It’s important to figure out where to cut yourself some slack and where to practice discipline. For instance, McKay once saw a very fit woman use a food scale in the buffet line on a cruise ship.

“As a fitness professional, I can say if she was training for an event within a week or so after the cruise, I get it,” says McKay. “But having a healthy relationship with food, in my opinion, does not mean carrying a food scale with you on vacation. Any weight you gain during a week of vacation is likely water weight or constipation. When you get home, be diligent about getting back to eating well. Plenty of vegetables, along with healthy carbohydrates and protein in appropriate portion sizes. Your body will get back to its normal in no time.”

Along with nutrition, be diligent about your exercise. For a workout partner that prioritizes your health and wellness, check out Aaptiv.

You want to come home from vacation with souvenirs and memories—not extra inches around your stomach. Still, sixty-one percent of Americans gain weight on vacation, according to a University of Georgia study earlier this year. The average is everywhere from one to seven pounds—but any number of extra lbs in just one week is too many when you’ve worked so hard for your rock hard vacation body.

The culprit: Drinking and eating your way through a new city or poolside. But you don’t have to forgo the culinary culture just to keep your diet on track. You just need to have a plan. “The number one way I see clients lose ground while on vacation is by flying by the seat of their pants with no plan, or just a blanket assumption that they will be able to eat and exercise normally while they’re away,” says British Columbia-based nutritionist Michelle Shepherd, R.D., founder of Westcoast Nutrition.

Why shouldn’t you just press pause and live it up while away? Snacking healthy can actually improve your experience. “You’ll have more energy and feel better on vacation, and won’t get pulled too far behind for when you get back,” Shepherd adds.

Here are 12 tips to keep your vacation from derailing your diet.

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Book a Room with a Kitchen

“One of the things I recommend to clients when booking vacations is to book hotel suites or rooms that have a kitchen,” says personal trainer and certified nutritionist Franci Cohen, founder of Fuel Fitness in Brooklyn. You’ll probably be eating most of your meals out—and you should. Enjoy the local offerings. But having your own sink, stove, and fridge gives you the luxury of preparing and storing healthy snacks and at least a few meals. Most hotels have a suite option you can upgrade to, or consider an Airbnb which almost always come with kitchen access.

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Stock Your Fridge

Don’t waste precious vacation hours at the supermarket. When you book your room, ask the hotel concierge if they will stock your fridge ahead of time. Marriott’s Residence Inn and Hilton’s Homewood Suites both deliver groceries to guests with no mark-ups, and some hotels even have special partnerships, like Affinia Hotels in New York who works with grocery delivery service FreshDirect for their guests. What should you stock your fridge with? Yogurt, fresh fruit and veggies, and hard boiled eggs are all great foods to have on hand so you don’t get caught off guard by hunger, Sheperd says.

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Pack Snacks

When you’re swimming all day or touring the city, it’s easy to forget to eat—but then you want to gorge when you make it to the dinner table, Manuel Villacorta, RD, founder of the Whole Body Reboot App, points out. Stashing snacks like fresh fruit, KIND bars, Clif Builders bars, and nuts and dried fruit (dates, apricots) which will help stabilize your blood sugar so you don’t go overboard on one meal. Poolside, opt for raw veggies and hummus, which will keep you full and energized without weighing you down, Cohen suggests.

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Weigh What’s Worth It

When you’re on the plane to paradise, take a few minutes to decide what indulgences will give you the most value, Shepherd suggests. Drinks by the pool? A really juicy steak? The resort’s famous key lime pie? Knowing what you’ll enjoy the most will help you avoid indulgences not worth the calories—plus it’ll give you something to look forward to.

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Stay Hydrated

“Sitting on a beach in the scorching sun does wonders to induce the appetite, which is a nightmare for your diet,” says Cohen. The extreme heat dehydrates you quickly, setting off pangs that you’ll probably interpret as hunger but are often just thirst cues, she explains. The solution is simple: Drink, drink, drink—water, that is. The traditional recommendation is to fill up on at least 2 liters a day, although Cohen recommends doubling that for active guys spending the day in the sun.

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Let Yourself Sleep In

Researchers from the University of Chicago found that sleep deprivation boosts a signal that makes the act of eating food more pleasurable and satisfying—which explains why skimping on sleep has long been associated with overeating and caving to cravings. Minimize your chances of stopping at every gelato stand by scoring a solid eight hours a night while away.

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Wake Up and Work Out

Exercise in the morning before you get distracted by town tours or 2-for-1 margaritas. Unless it’s an independently-owned B&B, your hotel probably has a fitness center. But by double checking before you book and asking what the offerings are, you’re less likely to hit the weights in a gym the size of a closet. Opt for a high-intensity workout, which studies have shown helps guys eat less later in the day. No gym? No problem. Try any of our at-home workouts!

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Plan an Active Excursion Every Day

You don’t necessarily need to hit the gym when there’s an ocean to swim in, a mountain to climb, a city to walk. If you know you’re not going to make it to the weight rack, consciously put something active on the itinerary every day, Sheperd suggests. “Paddleboarding, hiking, learning to surf, or taking bike tours of a new city are all great ways to get your body moving without losing the vacation vibe.”

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Always Have Breakfast

Okay, we’re not here to debate whether breakfast is the most important meal of the day. But starting your day off with a healthy, filling breakfast will help jumpstart your metabolism, give you sustained energy for the activities to come, and help control your appetite over the next few hours, says Villacorta. Plus, most of us like to splurge on lunch or dinner, so having a healthy breakfast will help minimize the damage to come later in the day, Sheperd adds. Focus your efforts on protein. A study in Nutrition Journal found that those who ate breakfast with 40 percent protein saw less cravings later in the day than those whose meal was only 15 percent protein as well as those who skipped early morning fare entirely.

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Eat Frequently

This is advice you’ll be happy to heed: Eat frequent meals throughout the day, recommends Cohen. It’ll keep your blood sugar levels stable (read: less cravings, more energy) and your hunger pangs in check. Plus, if you’re day drinking, having something in your stomach will help you drink at a healthier pace. But the meals should be modest, rather than splurging solely on a giant lunch or dinner, she adds. Aim for five to six small meals throughout the day, focusing heavily on protein which has been shown to keep you full longer.

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Control the Chaos

We’d never suggest you go to Italy and avoid all pasta or land in London and not have fish and chips. “Enjoy the local cuisine—just try not to make every single meal an event,” Villacorta suggests. For less epic meals, opt for grilled meats and fish, and shy away from fried foods and sauces. ”By ordering clean grilled proteins and skipping the sauces often laden with heavy creams, sugar, and fat, you’re saving hundreds of calories and fat grams,” Cohen adds. Try to get at least one serving of leafy greens a day and choose the veggie-heavy options (like salad) whenever possible, Sheperd advises. The goal is to make two thirds of your meals and snacks everyday choices, she adds—and then spend your calories on what you can’t have at home.

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Sip Smarter

All three experts agree: Alcohol is the biggest diet derailer. People drink more than double the amount of booze on vacation than they normally would—an average of 16 drinks a week while away, according to the University of Georgia study. But unless you’re an abstainer, you’re going to drink on vacation—probably a lot. Forgo the festive pina coladas and mojitos which are loaded with sugar (you don’t need the extra calories or energy zapper) and instead opt for wine, champagne, or hard liquor on the rocks, VIllacorta recommends. In between every cocktail, have a glass of water.

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Globe trotters beware!

Getting out in the world these days can be like an Olympics for your immunity system. If you’re exhausted and sit in close proximity to a sick person in public on a bus, airplane, train, restaurant or cafe you are at risk of catching a bug.

You know what happens when you come down with a cold on vacation after all that planning and expense? Misery!

But don’t let that put a damper on your travel plans, just adjust and thrive!

While getting sick is part of every day life, viruses are known to spread by coughing and sneezing, inhalation or contact with surfaces that we touch then spread to our eyes, nose and mouth.

So if you want to spread caution and learn how to avoid getting sick on vacation, we have 20 handy tips to stay healthy on vacation.

Get Vaccinated

Seek advice from your physician before you travel. Not all vaccinations are required for every individual for every trip, but if they are, you don’t want to wait till the last minute. A lot depends on what country or region you are visiting, and individual factors, such as your personal medical history, your duration of travel and specific activities.

Avoid New Germs

Getting a flu shot is a recommended. In some cases, a pneumonia vaccination is best for people at risk.

Motion Sickness Pills

Always pack motion sickness pills if you get nausea on long distances. Having a supply of motion sickness pills on hand is an excellent preventative if you’re asking “why do I always get sick on vacation?”

Avoid People Who Seem Sick

If someone’s coughing in your face, you’re at risk of picking up a virus. You need to at least turn away from them as best as you can. Wash your hands as often as you can, and don’t touch your nose, eyes or mouth… ever!

Wash Your Hands

Washing your hands is essential to stop the spread of infection and can dramatically reduce your chances of getting ill. Having a hand sanitizer is a great way to prevent getting sick when soap and water is not readily available.

Drink Water

If you’re unsure of the purity of the local water, it’s always best to avoid it. Don’t forget about ice as well! Even fruit and raw vegetables can carry bad germs if washed in bad water. Use bottled water to brush your teeth every time.

Eat Fresh Food

Food contamination is one of the biggest causes of diarrhea and gastrointestinal problems. Always be sure that your food is freshly prepared and cooked well through and through.

Probiotics

Taking probiotics will help you when you travel. The healthy bacteria will help reduce gas, bloating, and diarrhea.

Exercise

Exercise is one of the best ways to stay fit and healthy and to fight of unwanted bugs. It improves your overall health and wellbeing and strengthens your immunity. Keep active while on the road and resist the urge to eat rich, unfamiliar foods at every meal.

Boost Your Immunity

Taking vitamin C tablets is thought to increase your body’s resistance to fight off airborne germs. WOLO WanderBar Protein Bars have a special immunity blend to fight common travel bugs on your travels.

Avoid Jet Lag

Pack melatonin supplements. Your body produces melatonin on its own, but if you’re traveling, your internal clock may get thrown off.

Don’t Forget To Stretch

Flying and lengthy periods of sitting tend to have a dehydrating effect on the body. Remember to move your legs and stretch regularly, since sitting in one position for hours on end can increase the dangerous risk of blood clots (aka Deep Vein Thrombosis).

Prevent Back and Neck Pain

Ask your hotel if they have any Orthopaedic pillows. This will help you relax and sleep better and ease you gently into the next day.

Meds To Pack

Imodium and Pepto Bismol are both available over the counter without a prescription. They can help treat diarrhea, heartburn, nausea and indigestion.

Don’t Drink From Unclean Hotel Glasses

If you find a glass in your room that has not been hygienically wrapped, thoroughly wash it before using.

Stay Mindful of Your Meals

Experiencing the local cuisine can be a satisfying part of travel. Dig in on the local stuff, but maybe have a meal or two each day that is a bit more like your home fare.

Don’t Drink Too Much Caffeine

Avoiding too much caffeine will keep you hydrated.

An increase in your daily caffeine intake disrupts your sleep. Keep your caffeine consumption within range of your normal levels to avoid problems.

Don’t Skimp On Sleep

Partying too hard and skimping on sleep can be detriment to any vacation. Ensuring that you stay hydrated and get plenty of rest will boost your immunity.

Don’t Swim In Polluted Water

Before diving in, look around for signs that you are about to dive into a cesspool! Look for suspicious pipes emptying into the water, odd smells, scum on the surface and other common-sense indicators that the water isn’t safe for swimming. Even ocean water can be terribly polluted if you are downstream from where an overloaded sewer system is emptying.

Snacks On The Go

Being prepared with healthy treats when you’re out and having plenty of water will keep you nourished and energized. There are so many great options like – WOLO Wanderbars, cut up veggies, fruit and nuts.

For more travel hacks like 20 Travel Nutrition Tips to Help You Eat Healthy While Traveling make sure to check out the WOLO Travel Blog – an awesome resource for the Savvy Traveler.

A vacation is a time to relax, explore and embrace a break from your busy life. But, whether you’re visiting family or traveling with them, it can at times be a stressful affair that derails healthy eating routines. However, with proper planning, I can show you how to eat healthy on vacation and defuse the unease surrounding with ten tips to help you keep your 8fit meal plan momentum and stick to healthy eating habits while traveling or visiting family.

Just say “no.”

If your family is anything like mine, food is equated with love, and some families have a whole lot of love to give. I’ve always found it extremely difficult (and still do) to visit my family because they thoughtfully always buy my favorite childhood foods when I’m over — cookies, ice cream, macaroni and cheese, Reese’s peanut butter cups, etc. As sweet a gesture as that is, and as easy as it is to appease them just by eating these tantalizing treats, it took me a while to learn firmly say “no” when I didn’t want something.

The same goes when you’re traveling with friends, and you’re under peer pressure. The more you practice saying it, the easier it gets. Just say no thank you and that you’re not hungry and if it doesn’t work the first time, try, try, again.

Visit the local grocery store

One of my favorite ways to get to know a new place when I’m on vacation is to visit the local grocery store and explore all the regional foods. If you’re staying with family, stock up on your healthy meal plan staples and keep them at home. If your family are up for it, why not offer to plan and cook dinner so you can buy well-balanced foods and share your favorite 8fit recipes with them. If you’re staying in a hotel or hostel, get foods that don’t require refrigeration like nuts or nut butter, whole grain bread, fresh fruit, and vegetables.

Eat breakfast in

It’s said that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but it’s also one of the easiest ways to keep you on track. Preparing and eating breakfast at home (or wherever your home base is for your stay), will help fuel you for the day of activities ahead. Here are our some 8fit team favorites for quick and healthy breakfasts.

Pack snacks

Ever wonder why you go straight for the candy when you go to the grocery store after a long day? Even if you’ve got the best intentions, when you’re starving you’re instinct will be to grab the quickest source of fuel — why hello there sugary, simple carbs. This is your brain and body doing their job and sourcing your energy as fast as possible.

To prevent entering the hunger danger zone, bring easy to pack snacks with you like nuts, dried soybeans, minimally processed jerky, hard boiled eggs, string cheese, peanut butter, and celery sticks.

Avoid an ‘all or nothing’ mentality

Just because you’re on vacation, doesn’t mean you need to treat every meal like it’s your last one. When you eat like it’s the last supper you’re telling your body that it’s okay to eat three helpings of your mom’s famous apple pie today because tomorrow you promise you won’t have any sugar. Rather than taking on a black or white approach, add some color here and there while you’re away. Maybe you treat yourself to half a slice of that apple pie tonight and half tomorrow. Remember folks, eating healthy on vacation is all about balance.

Prepare a picnic

Some of my favorite travel memories are picnicking. I remember eating in a small park with my mom in London, at the beach with my friend in San Diego, and having freshly baked bread with cheese while alone in Paris. Whether you’re traveling alone or with loved ones, having a picnic is one of the best ways to take in your surroundings and eat mindfully.

Focus on fruits and veggies

When in doubt think to fill half of your plate with vegetables, a quarter with protein and a quarter with whole grains or complex carbs then add a dash of healthy fat. Aim to have every meal and snack contain a fresh fruit or vegetable. This will give you nutrients and water that keep you feeling good and nourish your body while traveling.

Mindful eating

Eat when you’re hungry and stop when you’re comfortable. Sounds easy right? Not all the time. To help you along, check-in with yourself from time to time.

  • Before you start eating, take a few breaths

  • Ask yourself how hungry you are on a scale of 1-10

  • Halfway through your meal do it again

  • If you are full, try putting your napkin on your plate or push the meal away so it symbolizes you’ re done

  • If you’re a chronic over-orderer — your eyes are bigger than your stomach — try sharing a meal

Check out more of my mindful eating tips.

Walk this way

If the place you are visiting is pedestrian-friendly, then walking is a fantastic way to explore a new place — the added bonus, think about all the money you’ll save on public transport, which I like to use towards a coffee or a local treat. Walking and often embracing getting lost, is my favorite way to see a new place. I love letting the streets guide me rather than following a map. As for family time, a walk is my savior. Even taking ten minutes to myself for a walk around the neighborhood helps to tune into myself for a little me time and self-care.

Relax

Between catching flights, recovering from jet lag, being aware of new surroundings, and of course, family; traveling can be stressful and exhausting. Stress and lack of sleep mean that our cortisol levels will be higher and our sugar cravings will peak. Try grounding yourself by taking deep, slow breaths and inhaling that healing air.

Try this: Before starting a meal, take three deep breaths, deep into your belly. As you exhale, contract your stomach, so all air exists. Then you can ask yourself if you really need that sweet treat?

Be gentle with yourself and realize that the vacation won’t last forever and enjoy non-food related fun and activities. Try your best when eating healthy on vacation and know that every meal or movement is a chance to practice self-care.

How to stay healthy on holiday and still enjoy yourself, according to a top nutritionist

One of the best things about travelling is undoubtedly the food – from fresh burrata to Belgian waffles, most of us want to try the local delicacies when on holiday. And rightly so.

But then coming home to find none of your clothes fit anymore, especially if you’d been working hard on your fitness previously, is less than ideal.

So how do you enjoy your holiday and all the delicious food – and drinks – on offer without sabotaging your health and fitness?

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Believe it or not, it is possible, as registered nutritionist and author of Re-Nourish, Rhiannon Lambert, explained to us.

So many of us act like kids in a candy store on holiday – the breakfast buffet is both a gift and a curse – but really, it all comes down to being a little more balanced. That way you can enjoy all the lovely food on offer and relax without stressing about what you’re consuming.

How to stay healthy on holiday:

1. Navigate the hotel breakfast

Is there anything better than coming down from a night sleeping in a fluffy cloud of a bed to an epic breakfast spread, with everything you could ever want to eat on offer? Who can be blamed for scoffing everything in sight?

But Lambert says the trick to enjoying a hotel breakfast and trying everything you want is to have an action plan:

“Pre-empt your choices the night before – pick an egg morning, the next day have a fruit salad morning, the day after try the traditional local breakfast and before you know it you will have worked your way around the buffet table over the course of the week without overindulging.”

Here are her top healthy breakfast options:

  • Omelettes – If you’re lucky enough to have an omelette station, load up on veggies to go with your eggs.
  • Greek yoghurt and fruit – Top your fruit salad with yoghurt for a protein boost to keep you fuller for longer and sprinkle with crushed seeds and nuts for some healthy fats and additional crunch.
  • Consider only one or two mornings to have that croissant or granola bowl as these tend to be highest in sugar and spike your hunger levels throughout the day.
  • Full English – Stick to portion control here and go for bacon over a sausage as it’s lower in fat content, ideally swap the bacon for just eggs then load up on mushrooms, tomatoes and a small portion on beans on toast.

When you can help yourself to food, it’s easy to consume vast quantities but you’ll likley thank yourself later if you watch your portion size – don’t deprive yourself of treats, but indulge in moderation.

“Think of your hands when you’re out as a rough guide to portion control,” Lambert explains. “One outstretched palm for a portion of protein, a handful of carbohydrate, two large handfuls of vegetables and a thumb-sized serving of healthy fats.”

2. Stay active

When you think about how expensive gym memberships are, you may as well make the most of a hotel gym if one is available. If you get in even a 20 minute session before breakfast, you’ll enjoy the rest of your day so much more and be able to relax to your heart’s content.

Another great way to keep active is to walk, which Lambert thinks is an underrated form of exercise: “Regular walking has been shown to reduce the risk of chronic illnesses, such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, asthma, stroke and even some cancers,” she points out.

Walking will also allow you to top up your vitamin D and explore more of the local area, be that a city or the coast.

And if you find yourself needing to jump into the pool to cool off after every half hour of sunbathing, doing just a few lengths each time will really add up: “Getting your heart rate up is protective for your cardiovascular health but it also boosts your mood and energy so you will have an overall happier and healthier holiday,” Lambert says.

3. Eat mindfully

In our normal lives, we often wolf down our food because we don’t have much time. This isn’t usually the case on holiday, but it’s still easy to be distracted by everything going on.

But research has shown that people who eat while distracted are more prone to overeating because they’re less likely to notice when they feel full.

“To prevent this from happening, eat mindfully without distractions, including work and electronics,” Lambert recommends. “Another way to eat mindfully is to eat slowly and chew your food thoroughly, which will allow you to better recognise your body’s signals of fullness and consume fewer calories.”

She suggests taking a few deep breaths before you start eating to induce relaxation and help you focus on your plate.

4. Sleep

Whilst some people take their holidays as a chance to catch up on sleep, others stay out late enjoying the nightlife but also get up early to fit in a full day of sightseeing, activities and sunbathing. However this can lead to you coming home more exhausted than when you left.

Lambert also says that sleep-deprivation is linked to weight gain: “This is because those who do not sleep enough tend to be hungrier, consume more calories and get less physical activity.”

Inadequate sleep has also been linked to lower metabolism, Lambert points out: “This is believed to be due to alterations in your circadian rhythm, which is known as the biological clock that regulates many bodily functions.”

5. Stay hydrated

It’s of the utmost importance to drink more water if you’re on holiday somewhere hot.

As a general rule, you can work out how much water you should be drinking with this calculation: multiply your weight in kg by 0.033. However, if you’re being active and it’s hot, you need to drink even more.

Often we mistake thirst for hunger, so you may end up eating more if you’re dehydrated. Watermelon, cucumbers, strawberries and lettuce are all over 92 per cent water, so wise choices for snacks to keep your water levels up.

6. Snack smart

Who can resist an ice cream on the beach or some tapas with your sangria? Not many of us.

But Lambert says it’s crucial to shine a light on your snacking habits: “If you find yourself snacking just because there’s food available and not because you’re hungry then it’s best to avoid snacking altogether.”

If you are hungry, then of course, have a snack. Lambert says it’s simply a case of balancing a little of what you want with something healthier. For example, instead of two scoops of ice cream, have one with some fruit.

7. Choose your drinks wisely

Is a holiday even a holiday if you don’t have a piña colada? Unfortunately, many of us massively increase our usual calorie intake on holiday with alcohol.

“I always enjoy a piña colada on holiday,” Lambert says. “It’s one of my rituals but I won’t be having two a day! Be conscious that there are a lot of calories in drinks and choose wisely.”

Healthy alcohol swaps:

  • A mojito instead of a margarita – containing lashings of tequila, sour mix, triple sec, lime and sugar, a margarita is one of the worst offenders on the cocktail menu at a jean-squeezing 550 calories. Ask for your mojito without sugar for a much lighter drink between 130-140 calories.
  • A piña colada cooler instead of a piña colada – made from coconut-flavoured rum, pineapple juice, sparkling water and a dash of low-fat coconut cream, a piña colada cooler contains around 165 calories instead of the staggering 500-600 in a regular version.
  • Shandy instead of beer – swapping a full beer for some diet lemonade takes your drink from 250-300 calories to a mere 60 calories a glass.
  • Spritzer instead of wine – try adding lemonade or, if you’re super good, soda water to your wine to reduce the calorie intake drastically from 150-220 calories to just 50 a glass.

8. Have a little of your cake and eat it

Dessert is one of the greatest pleasures in life and certainly something to be enjoyed on holiday, but it’s easy to consume excessive amounts of sugar and thus gain weight.

“Instead of eating every treat in sight, it can be helpful to focus on your favourites,” Lambert advises. “Eat the ones you really want and ditch the rest.

“Another trick is to savour the desserts you do indulge in, which may leave you feeling more satisfied and less likely to overdo it.” It’s all about eating mindfully again.

“I personally find that having what I really want and just having a spoon of something I am not that fussed about really helps me stay on track on holiday,” Lambert says.

9. Treat yo’self

Finding time to take care of yourself is crucial for your health, whether that’s having a lie-in and a day of rest, reading a book or getting a manicure or massage.

“Take the time to do the things that make you happy and your body will love you for it,” says Lambert.

Eating healthy on vacation

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