Easy Tips To Keep Your Health In Check During Your Vacation
- 3 mins Read
- Written by: Dr. Pramod Mane
With the holiday season upon us, most of us are busy packing to take off to exotic destinations around the world, or gearing up to see friends and family. However, while vacationing is usually a time to unwind, with all the fun and merrymaking, it also comes with its fair share of challenges. The biggest among them is how to stay healthy during the holiday season. Now if you are someone who usually eats out every day when you’re on a holiday, you might experience some changes, once the holidays are over. Some of the main problems people face after coming back from a holiday are an increased waistline and stomach problems. Here are some tips you can follow on holiday to keep your health in check!
What’s healthy, what’s not
The majority of the weight gain seen in individuals happens due to the holiday season. Overeating, frequently snacking on unhealthy foods, inactivity, and lethargy are normal during vacations. A study has shown that weight gained during a vacation can persist for more than six weeks! This can affect your annual weight gain and could lead to health complications. Here are a few ways in which you can manage your health while vacationing!
Find healthy restaurants
How can one maintain the health of their stomach? Healthy food is the answer! Stomach problems and digestive problems might follow on vacations due to continuous unhealthy eating. But how exactly do you eat healthy on a vacation? Thoroughly research about the place you are going to before a vacation. Find out about the various kind of restaurants in the vicinity, and whether they offer healthy choices. Once there, look out for the best foods to eat on vacation that simultaneously takes care of your health. However, you don’t have to always compromise on taste in the pursuit of eating healthy! Salad bars or cafes that have several healthy options on their menu can be a treat for both your tongue, and the body!
Find healthy alternatives
If you’re wondering about the top ways to improve gut health, it’s a must you stay away from junk food and oily snacks. Of course, there may be times when you are not able to find restaurants that serve healthy options; there may also be times when the food might not seem so appealing. At such times, go around looking for cafes or restaurants that serve up:
Burrito bowls: A bowl packed with proteins, fibers, and carbs!
Fresh fruit juices or parfaits: Ditch regular sweets with lots of added sugar and keep your blood sugar in control. Fresh juices and parfaits will perfectly take care of your vacation sugar rush, with the additional benefits of fiber and calcium!
Avocado toast: Start your day with this instead of a croissant or muffin. Avocados are rich in micronutrients and healthy fats!
Practice mindful eating!
There may be times when you may find yourself devoid of healthy options, or your friends and family might force you to eat something you don’t! In such cases, you need to practice mindful eating and control your portion size. Meditating might help you think clearly and choose healthier food options. Follow these mindful eating exercises and tips for better digestive health during a vacation.
Don’t be a couch potato!
Apart from binge eating and high-calorie food consumed on vacations, inactivity is also one of the causes of weight gain! Don’t fret, we’ve got you covered! Here are a few activities you can plan for your trip that can be both calorie-consuming and fun!
- Trekking: Plan treks to hilly terrains or finds one near your destination. Trekking is a great way to exercise and have fun. Also, the view when you reach the summit is breathtaking and rewarding! However, keep in mind that treks are also dangerous, so find someone who is experienced enough to guide your group.
- River rafting: Riding that inflated rubber raft in a turbulent river is thrilling, scary but super fun! You can find river rafting services easily online or at the hotel, you are staying. River rafting is quite safe and all precautions are taken to ensure your safety!
- Surfing: If you’re planning to visit a place that’s close to the beach you can try surfing! Although surfing is a fun and strenuous activity, it is best to do it under supervision. Various institutes offer short-term surfing courses.
However, if you are in a region where you can’t do adventurous sports, you can always visit the gym if your hotel has one or squeeze in a short home workout.
Precaution is better than cure!
People often report acidity, bloating, or even food poisoning after eating something during their vacation! It is therefore best to be prepared for such situations. Here are some holiday eating tips to keep in mind before you take off:
- Visit hygienic places
- Know what is in your food! Ask the server about the potential allergens in your food. For example, milk, nuts, gluten, etc.
- An oldy but goody, always wash your hands before you eat.
- Avoid spicy foods if you’re susceptible to acidity.
Despite taking precautions, there are chances that you might eat something that you’re not supposed to. Here are a few things you could do in the case of emergencies:
- Carry EpiPens in case someone has an anaphylaxis reaction
- Carry Lactaid pills/ peptone drinks for lactose-intolerant people
- Keep antacids handy
We hope that the points and tips will help you keep up your health throughout your vacation! Eat cautiously and vacation fearlessly!
Cooper JA et al. A prospective study on vacation weight gain in adults. Physiology & behavior. 2016;156:43-7.
Crawley C. The challenge of healthy restaurant eating.
Fernandez OE. Live Longer (and Be Healthier) by Eating the Right Foods. InThe Calculus of Happiness 2017 Apr 3 (pp. 20-40). Princeton University Press.
Dreher ML et al. Hass avocado composition and potential health effects. Critical reviews in food science and nutrition. 2013 Jan 1;53(7):738-50.
“8 steps to mindful eating” Available from: https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/8-steps-to-mindful-eating