Maintaining a Healthy Diet on Holiday


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No matter how good you are at maintaining a healthy and sustainable diet in your everyday life, holidays present a temptation to slip into bad habits. There are a number of reasons for this – you’re away from home, so you often can’t cook your own meals; you want change and adventure; travel exhaustion saps your willpower and makes you want to eat more junk. Fortunately, there are ways to keep up with a healthy diet even while enjoying your holiday.

Firstly, make sure you find out what sort of food is available to you in transit. Of late, there are almost always vegetarian/low fat/even coeliac options on flights and other forms of mass transit like ferries. However, if you are driving you will have to be proactive and take responsibility for your eating to a higher degree. If you don’t pack food, you will likely end up stopping at the first fast-food place you see on the road when you’re really hungry and your decision-making capacities will be impaired. For that reason, pack some healthy and filling food in a cooler and keep it in the boot of your car so you can pull over and snack when necessary. Some suggestions: crackers, yoghurt, fruit, vegetables and sandwiches.

There are steps you can take at your hotel too. It’s probably best not to accept the key for the minibar – honestly, you don’t need it, and it’s only going to interfere with your healthy eating and possibly leaving you with a hangover the next morning. Be careful with buffet breakfasts, and check out whether your hotel has a stove or microwave available to guests.

When eating out, remember that restaurants generally serve relatively large amounts of food and compensate for that. It’s important that you fuel yourself approximately every four hours, so try to fit in three square meals along with snacks throughout the day. Missing meals will not help, especially if you’re trying to lose weight – particularly missing breakfast.

Endeavour not to eat much late at night, because by that point your body is slowing down and preparing for sleep, so your metabolism slows and your body can’t deal with the same amount of food in a short time.

With just a little bit of planning ahead, staying healthy on your holidays isn’t hard. And remember – eating one pizza every so often won’t kill you, as long as you’re making the effort to stay healthy in general.


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