9 Ways to Take Your Diet on Vacation
Food and travel don't have to add up to diet disaster.
Vacation Diet Tip No. 2: Go for Zero-Calorie Beverages
You don't need hundreds and hundreds of calories from beverages on top of the extra calories you'll be consuming from food. The good news is there are usually plenty of no-calorie drink options at most restaurants. Ask for lemon or lime for your glass of ice water or order unsweetened hot or cold tea, coffee, sparkling water, club soda, or diet soda.
The bad news is that alcohol can be a diet disaster when you're on vacation. Many of us tend to drink more while on vacation -- perhaps frozen margaritas by day and a few glasses of wine by night. Each alcoholic drink can tack on about 150 to 450 calories.
Vacation Diet Tip No. 3: Downsize Your Portions
It doesn't make sense to deprive yourself of enjoyable foods while you're on vacation. Instead, downsize your portions by ordering from the kids' or junior menu, or ordering an appetizer instead of an entree. You could also split an entree with your dining partner, or save half for another meal and stash it in the hotel refrigerator.
Vacation Diet Tip No. 4: Ask Your Waiter 4 Questions
1. Ask how a dish is prepared and served. Then, you can request that your selection be prepared or served differently, if necessary. For example, meats that are fried can often be ordered grilled instead.
2. Ask for sauces, gravies, and dressings to be served on the side so you can use a modest portion.
3. Ask that your entree be served with fresh vegetables (no butter or sauce, please) or a side salad instead of the usual french fries.
4. Request whole grains whenever possible. Some restaurants offer 100% whole-wheat bread and buns, whole-grain blend pasta, tortillas, and steamed brown rice.
Vacation Diet Tip No. 5: Order Fruits and Veggies Every Chance You Get
Look for opportunities to order dishes that include high-nutrient, high-fiber fruits and vegetables. Entree salads or side salads made with spinach or romaine lettuce are a fun way to get your vegetables. If you're ordering something like a shrimp or chicken quesadilla, you can ask the restaurant to add some grilled vegetables.