In the final part of our six-week series, Nutritional Therapist Amelia Freer explains how to stay on the healthy eating wagon on holiday - starting at the airport
Hallelujah – summer is finally here and your fabulous bodies are ready to bare! As holiday season takes hold, it’s all too easy to return to the UK with excess baggage… around our middles if we aren’t careful. I naturally encourage the hedonistic days - life is for living and embracing - but it’s totally possible to have fun without throwing our health out of the window.
It’s all about striking a deal with ourselves. Choose what your holiday luxuries will be and stick to that structure. And by luxuries I mean lifestyle ones too – it’s possible to have fun that doesn’t revolve around food and alcohol! Summer body survival is all about being prepared, making a commitment to yourself and your health and having a plan to maintain a healthy routine while taking a break. I advise my clients to aim to come back as the same weight as when they left. It’s not the time to try to lose weight, but it’s key to not fall so far off track that they undo all of their pre-holiday efforts.
As you pack your bikini and toothbrush, have a think about what you are going to eat on the day of travel. To me this is just as much a part of packing, as I want to avoid being delayed in an airport or train with processed food as the only option to eat. You don’t want to feel bloated on your first day on the beach! So plan a good meal before you leave, take water, take healthy snacks (nuts, fresh fruit, unrefined sugar-free bars) and a nice salad for whenever your next meal is required (keep the dressing in a small disposable pot).
Airport food is starting to improve and there now are a few slightly better options in some but I still prefer to ensure that I have my own, and it just removes that whole need to be tempted by the less healthy offerings. If this just isn’t for you then hit the salmon bar and opt for smoked salmon and salad, or find a menu with eggs and grab a piece of fruit and wait to eat again when you have arrived at your destination.
Next is to think about food while you are away. Do you end up eating endless ice creams just for the sake of it, or eating foods that you know make you bloat because there is nothing else available? I’m not suggesting that you go away with an entire suitcase of food but it helps to have some healthy alternatives with you for when you might need. I take flax crackers and almond butter with me for the times when a healthy breakfast is a struggle and I take nuts, seeds and chia seed sachets as a way to add protein to any meal.
Once you arrive on holiday, do some research for the closest healthy places to eat and shop. I search for restaurants that offer gluten free or local and seasonal produce – it depends where you go of course as some Mediterranean destinations only offer healthy, local food. But arming myself with local knowledge of where I can purchase real food or healthy substitutes is a priority for me. The YELP app is good for this.
Lastly, to keep flat tummies and smooth thighs, never forget about hydration, wherever you are. Water is the only way to glow, reduce jet lag, keep buoyant and energised and avoid grazing – all holiday essentials.
So there you have it. Keep hydrated, don’t leave without a plan and take some healthy foods – just three simple things to keep your health and healthy body in tact this summer.
Enjoy your holidays and your beautiful bodies!
Suggested Meal Plan
Breakfast frittata with asparagus, red onion and tomato
One frittata can make 4 breakfasts/lunches!
Hearty Italian three bean soup with a chicken stock, onion, garlic, peppers, tomato shredded cavolo nero, chili powder and cumin to taste.
Wild Alaskan salmon marinated in homemade teriyaki - tamari, honey, garlic, ginger and spring onions. Baked lightly and served with stir fried mixed vegetables – carrot, broccoli and mange tout, drizzled with sesame oil and sprinkled with sesame seeds.
Snack (only if travelling)
Coconut pieces, water, Love Raw bar, fresh fruit
See Amelia Freer's previous healthy eating plan guides here and follow us on Twitter @GetTheGloss for the latest health and nutrition news