Healthy Travels

Couple on car road trip travel in Yosemite eating

Tips to keep the bulge at bay on your winter getaway

[dropcap]P[/dropcap]lanning a February or March getaway? Here are some tips and tricks for you to stay healthy and avoid gaining weight while on your vacation.

Book a place with a kitchenette or kitchen: It may seem funny that I am suggesting this, since a kitchen is all about food. However, when you are on vacation, eating out at restaurants for every meal wreaks havoc on your health from a weight and digestion perspective. Being able to prepare your own breakfast and lunch is a healthy way to skip out on excessive amounts of calories, sodium, and fats that are usually laden in restaurant meals. Saving your meal out for dinner is a nice treat to look forward to at the end of the day, and is a good balance between healthy and indulgent.

Pack snacks: Whether you are driving or flying to your destination, the moment you step away from your home and your usual routine, you are susceptible to making less healthy choices. Make sure you are prepared for these temptations by keeping food in your purse and travel bags. Travelling across borders can present issues when it comes to fresh fruits and vegetables, so pack your snacks accordingly.

Consider packing whole grain crackers, trail mixes, kale chips, dried fruit and dark chocolate for some healthy snacks on the go.

Go to a grocery store or market: When you arrive at your destination, go explore the local grocery stores and markets. If you have a kitchenette you can stock up on your favourite healthy foods, while also discovering new foods, too.

Even if you do not have a fridge where you are staying you can still grab some healthy snacks and fruits that don’t need to be refrigerated. This will ensure that you are not making unhealthy impulse decisions when hunger strikes.

Be mindful of the buffet: If you are travelling to an all-inclusive resort, your biggest threat to your waistline and digestive health is the buffet. Since a buffet is a smorgasbord of mostly salty, greasy and very rich foods, before you pile your plate take a moment to be mindful. Mindful eating is a practice that will help you make healthier choices, tuning in to internal cues such as when you are full. A wise approach to the buffet is selecting steamed, grilled and fresh food options. Leaving yourself the option of one indulgent food item is totally fine; just don’t fill your plate. Endless options will lead to endless weight gain if you don’t monitor your choices.

Take a daily probiotic: There is nothing worse than having an upset stomach while on your holiday. The thing is, constantly eating out at restaurants, eating unusual foods, and being on a different schedule messes with your digestion. Packing or buying a good quality probiotic while away will minimize these digestive disturbances and load you up with immune-boosting gut bacteria. Healthy gut internally will help with a slim-looking gut externally. Win-win!

Jaime Slavin is a nutritionist, guide, coach, motivator, educator and an advocate for your health and well-being.

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