Options to support your nutrition on holidays…

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    It’s that time of year again when most of us are looking forward to some downtime and if we are lucky enough maybe get away and enjoy some sun! Holidays offer an important break from the daily grind, promoting mental and physical rejuvenation. It also provides us with an opportunity to spend time relaxing with family and friends, fostering our relationships away from the normal busyness of life.

    Therefore, it’s key that we take this time for relaxation and enjoyment, to enhance our overall well-being and allow us to recharge for the remainder of the year. It’s equally important that we allow ourselves to enjoy our meals and food on holidays guilt free, so eating itself does not become a stress that takes away from the overall enjoyment of our time away. To help support our nutrition while on holidays we have compiled some advice to help reduce the stress you may feel.

    Fruit and vegetables

    Holidays can be time to tune into our body

    Firstly, holidays are about relaxing and doing things that we love, with those we enjoy spending time with. However, it can also be a time that as we relax, our body does too and some discomforts that we may usually experience can disappear. We have time to listen and maybe pay greater attention to how we feel.

    Depending on your type of holiday it can allow you time to:

    • Tune into your body and see how its really feeling. Are you really tired? How is your sleep? Do your digestive issues disappear? Listening and understanding is important as it may provide insight for you on what steps you may need to take after the break when you return to your normal routine.
    • When we slow down, this gives us time to assess our hunger needs. If it’s an active holiday, then we may need to eat more so that we can support what we are doing or if it’s a slower one, then we may not need as much. Remember that the heat can also reduce our appetite, so we may not feel the need to eat as much as we usually would.
    • We have more time to eat in general, so it’s a great opportunity to practice some mindful eating, slowing down the speed at which we eat and tuning in to see where our fullness levels are at.

    Enjoying the experience of holidays, but also using the time by starting to listen to our body and what it may be telling us!

    Fruit and vegetables

    An opportunity to build new habits

    On holidays the busyness and stress of life can really reduce…hopefully! So rather than adding to apprehension of making sure we eat well, here are some opportunities that we can build into our meals while on our break:

    1. Increase hydration – this is incredibly important if we are visiting a hotter climate. Bring your water bottle with you, fill it up during the day to keep your intake up. Have a glass of water with each coffee or alcoholic drink, making sure that you stay hydrated.
    2. Take advantage of the healthy options available – this can vary depending on where you are staying. At hotel breakfasts there is usually a huge array of fruit to choose from, so take the opportunity to get some of your 5-7 a day in and just add some natural yogurt, nuts and seeds. Eggs are usually an option too, so scrambled, boiled or omelettes are another way  to add some vegetables also.  Both breakfast options will set you up well for the day.
    3. Smart snack options –  when out and about bring snacks with you, this can often be cheaper, and it makes it easier having a nutritious option at hand. Bringing fruit, nuts and yoghurts will help you stay fuller until your larger meal and prevent overeating later.
    4. Options to add to your evening meal – when eating out in the evening consider ordering a side of salad or vegetables to add colour to your plate. For dessert have some fruit, share your favourite dessert or maybe you might just have a coffee.
    5. Stay active – especially important if it’s a less active holiday. Take walks in the morning or in the evening, use the opportunity to get some swimming in or use the hotel gym even for a short session. Getting our heart rate up boosts our mental and physical energy, so we can get the best out of our holiday. 

    Most importantly holidays are about relaxing, spending time with loved ones and recharging. Having a guilt free break and getting the most out of your experiences. Taking some of the options above that work best for you, will help support your nutritional health and help you get the most out of this well-earned time.

    Fruit and vegetables