Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Vacation Rentals and Healthy Eating--Dieting Tips for Your Next Trip

You'll look good in your swimsuit lying
at waters edge at your beachfront vacation rental.

If you're like a lot of people, a vacation can mean you come backed weighted down with more than just souvenirs. A week's worth of eating out, eating on the run, and snacking in the car or in the airport because you're bored is dangerous even for people who don't have a weight problem. And it's darn near deadly for someone trying to watch what they eat.

Staying in a vacation rental is a great way to win the battle of the travel bulge. You can stay in complete control of what you eat because you'll have a kitchen with everything you need to prepare meals and store your food. You can eat every dinner in, pack a lunch for when you're on the go, and start your day right with a breakfast of your choice (and not just what's on   the hotel or resort menu).

But you still have to travel to your destination, and the journey will be filled with temptations. The first thing to remember is to pack healthy, tasty snacks you can enjoy on the way. Whether you're driving or flying, you'll have countless opportunities to eat the wrong food. Bring low sugar and low fat cereal bars, diet drinks, water, fruit, small bags of pretzels, and beef jerky (though you should also watch your sodium intake with the last two). Another thing to keep in mind is that while you're driving or flying, you won't be expending many calories, so there's really no need to eat all that much. You'll be sitting in a car or airplane. If you eat a meal along the way, try to eat less than you normally do. You might feel a little hungry, but you'll feel better about it in the long run.

Another way to stay on top of what you eat is to track your caloric intake. Be sure to read food labels of everything you eat. If you have a smartphone, get an app such as MyFitnessPal. It can help you keep track of everything you eat. It acts as a food diary so you can avoid the pitfall of "unconscious eating."

When you get to your destination, leave time for shopping before you arrive. Most vacation rentals won't have spices, so go ahead and pick up the ones you'll need, along with any staples. If you're pressed for time, you might check with the property manager to see if there are any grocery delivery services in the area. If you start off with food to cook (as well as healthy snacks), you're more likely to eat healthy at the start of your vacation.

While you want to watch what you eat while on vacation, don't deny yourself completely. Allow yourself to indulge in a steak, chocolate cake, a favorite drink or two and other treats from time to time. You're on vacation, after all! Just be sure to stay on track to prevent a dangerous slide into unhealthy eating patterns.