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All Health's Breaking Loose: Eat well, feel great during your vacation

June 22, 2011|By Loa Blasucci

You worked hard all year and waited patiently for a much-deserved break. Your trip was perfectly planned and there you are, on vacation — eat, drink and be merry! But after a while, the effects of vacation food and drink don’t leave you feeling so merry.

Celebration eating happens when we’re in party mode — it seems like a good idea at the time. You’re away from home, no kitchen to clean, no groceries to buy, and when it’s time to order in a restaurant, that celebratory notion says, “Just have it, you’re on vacation, worry about it later.” What’s that they say about payback?

Restaurant meals are higher in salt, sugar, additives and fat than meals prepared at home. After a few days of party food, lethargy, bloating and irritability can set in and change up your best-laid plans. No matter how beautiful your surroundings or how carefully you planned, somehow it’s not as much fun when indigestion and fatigue are part of your vacation.

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Menus are designed to sell you meals — in other words, they are marketing to you. “Lightly crusted, sizzled to perfection, with a delicate glaze of golden, caramelized goodness imported from the upper north region of heaven....” (I may have read that on a menu). But if we can let go of salivating, romantic notions, it is possible to eat delicious food and have a great time without afternoon fatigue, stomach upset or weight gain. After all, you don’t want to miss out on planned events because you’re too tired and have an upset stomach. You’ll want to enjoy quality food and still have the energy to do whatever you want, and afterwards, have clear memories of all the sights and sounds.

There’s more to having a great vacation than eating. Maybe what you really need is some solitude or a good book. Maybe you need to be inspired. Whatever it is that will create the perfect trip for you, I hope your intuition will help you create it. You deserve to get the most out of your playtime and return home edified, and to clothes that still fit. Celebrate your body right along with your time off. Here are a few thoughts on eating well, ordering out, feeling great and having a memorable time, during and after your vacation.

Most restaurants serve portions twice the size you need. Split your meal with your travel buddy. Your waistline will thank you and you’ll have a few extra bucks to spend.

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