How to Enjoy Your Cruise Without Ditching Your Nutrition Goals
So you’re going on a cruise, but you have weight loss/nutrition-related goals… Here are some helpful hints to both enjoy your vacation, but also come out of it unscathed and without “falling off the boat” so-to-speak with the abundance of food and drinks surrounding you! Having a plan, and some guidelines laid out for you ahead of time can be key to coming back looking and feeling better, happier, and healthier than when you left:
- Create your plate: make sure each meal includes a nice balance of lean protein, veggies, healthy carbohydrates, and healthy fats.
- On a similar note, load up on veggies and salad when you can. Ask for steamed vegetables instead of sauteed.
- Stop when you’re satisfied/content. Don’t mindlessly eat or eat when you’re not hungry. Eat slowly, pay attention to your hunger cues, and control your portions: don’t eat until you’re STUFFED, but still enjoy the foods you love without overeating them.
- Enjoy your vacation! Enjoy and savor your food and drinks. Indulge when it’s worth it and when you’re really in the mood for it, not just because it’s available. Don’t feel guilty for indulging when you’ve decided it’s worth it!
- Minimize alcohol intake. Have a sip or a very small glass of red wine with lunch or dinner. Alcoholic beverages are empty calories so going light on the drinking is a healthy choice. For mixed drinks, tequila/vodka with club soda and lime would be much better than a sugary concoction.
- Drink plenty of water. This is always important, but especially so while traveling.
Before your trip, you can:
- Disclose your dietary preferences/needs when you book. If you’re gluten or dairy free, tell them so they can accommodate you – it’s more common these days, so you won’t be the only one.
- Bring snacks with you. I never travel without RxBars! Another idea is to bring your own Vital Proteins Creamer for your coffee!
Here are some more specific meal guidelines:
Make sure you get some protein in (at every meal, but especially breakfast!)
This is a great place to include a salad as the basis of the meal, with some lean protein and extras on the side.
Get salads/dressings/sauces on the side.
Avoid the processed, baked sweets.
Opt for healthier options like fruit or something with protein like a hard-boiled egg or nuts.
Sticking to eating at meals during cruises can be helpful, instead of grazing all day and having bigger meals at mealtimes.
Don’t feel pressured to order every course.
Don’t be afraid to ask for half-portions.
Check out the spa menu, or other healthier menu options.
Choose your dining venue wisely. If you can’t control yourself at a buffet, choose a restaurant with more fixed menu choices. If you don’t like long meals with multiple courses and you prefer the flexibility of the buffet, do that!
Skip sauces and dressings, or get them on the side.
Choose healthier ones like fruit or sorbets instead of richer cakes and ice creams. You’ll still get your sweetness on!
Skip the late night eating; get some sleep and wait until breakfast!
The bottom line is to enjoy your vacation, indulge strategically, and come back feeling healthier, happier, and more rejuvenated – without adding unwanted weight in the process!