Trying a new country’s (or city’s!) cuisine is essential to understanding and appreciating the culture. But, unfortunately, when we travel, it is hard to find healthy options and to get our full serving of fruits and vegetables. We spend so much time in airports, train stations and hotels, which seem to offer only greasy, fattening foods. But, if you plan ahead and stay smart on your next trip, you can enjoy your meals and stay healthy.
One of the easiest ways to eat well is to pack food in advance for the plane, train, bus or car. Also, pack a bunch of healthy snacks to keep in your purse for when you are out and about. Here are our favorite healthy snacks:
- Dried fruit and nut mix
- Veggie slices
- A health fruit bar: Gardenbar is an easy and delicious way to get nine vegetables, five grains, nuts, seeds and spices.
- Baked whole grain chips
- Plenty of water
Eating at restaurants is an important and enjoyable part of vacation! But, it’s all about moderation. If you already had a dessert during the day, skip the dessert at dinner and choose some fruit. Order a soup or salad before your main course to fill you up so you eat less of the calorie-dense meal. Our favorite tip is to split a meal with a friend. Most restaurants serve huge portions, so you save calories and money. And, you get to enjoy the food without overeating.
If your only options for a meal are fast food restaurants, look for sandwich shops like Subway or Quiznos, which let you choose your sandwich ingredients. Opt for whole grain bread, lean means and lots of vegetables. Order sandwiches with grilled chicken rather than fried chicken, don’t super-size your meal (even if it sounds like a great deal) and watch out for calorie-bomb salads (like taco salads or salads with fried chicken strips).
Don’t deprive yourself! If you are in Italy, you have to try pizza, gelato, pasta etc. Just don’t go crazy: allow yourself one treat a day and make sure to stay active. Very often, you will be walking all day, so you can afford a little treat every now and then. And, above all, bon voyage!