Are you trying to eat healthy but not sure how to go about maintaining your diet habits on vacation? Are you wondering where the line is between enjoying yourself and “falling off the wagon”? I want to help you answer your questions and create an action plan for your next vacation.
The best thing you can do for yourself is to plan ahead. Maybe you don’t want to plan out exactly which restaurants you’re going to eat at each day but it will be extremely beneficial to look at the menus of potential restaurants and create a list of options.
Use the Happy Cow app/website to find vegan and vegetarian friendly restaurants. Happy Cow is seriously a lifesaver especially if you’re traveling with other people who don’t share your diet. It lists restaurants that may have only one vegan option – so if you’re family or friends are dying to go to that restaurant you’ll be confident that there’s at least something on the menu you can eat.
This happened to me on my recent vacation. My family wanted to go to a pizza restaurant. Clearly, pizza isn’t plant-based, but using the Happy Cow app I saw that the restaurant had vegan options. I ended up eating a delicious and hearty salad while my family enjoyed the pizza that they wanted.
For other meals on my vacation, we found restaurants that had both vegan and non-vegan options. Specifically, restaurants with ethnic foods tend to have plenty of veggies.
If you’re following a plant-based diet, often your options at restaurants will be pretty healthy. This makes maintaining diet habits easy! You may find some restaurants offer vegan cheese or fake meats, but you can also find less processed ingredients. When deciding what to eat, try to choose the option with the least processing and try to pile on those veggies. But don’t forget that you’re on vacation — you can indulge a little!!
While you’re probably going to eat at restaurants most of the time, you can augment your diet by finding a grocery store. Pick up fresh fruit, nuts, and veggies that are easily portable so you always have a healthy snack or emergency food if you go to a restaurant that doesn’t have any plant-based options.
Vacation is a time to relax and let loose. Allow yourself to indulge in a meal with processed food or that plant-based dessert that catches your eye. Don’t become too uptight about maintaining your exact eating habits.
And at the end of your vacation, if you’ve eaten a little too much junk food, forgive yourself. Now you know what’s in your comfort zone. Just jump back into your healthy habits as soon as you get back. Your body will likely be craving all the healthy foods you didn’t eat on vacation.
I tried to take pictures of all my meals to give you guys and idea of what I actually ate while on vacation. I didn’t quite remember to snap a picture of all of them, but here are some of the yummy things I got to eat!
The first day we were in Arizona, I ate this delicious breakfast porridge. It had oats, quinoa, and other grains cooked in almond milk. They topped it with berries, banana, almond slivers, and hemp seeds. So good.
That night we ate at an Ethiopian restaurant. All their food was served on this bread/pancake/tortilla thing. I got split peas, potatoes + carrots, and green beans.
The next day we ate at a completely vegan restaurant and I got this rice bowl. They topped the brown rice with cooked broccoli, carrots, cabbage, and tofu and drizzled on an amazing peanut sauce.
At a Mediterranean restaurant, I got falafel salad. I LOVE falafel so I was so excited to be able to eat falafel and get in all my greens.
On our last day in Arizona, we went to an incredible local plant-based restaurant. I ate this quinoa bowl that had tofu, broccoli, greens, and a spicy, delicious curry sauce. 10/10 would recommend.
Overall I’m super pleased with the food I was able to find on my vacation and I’m hopeful that armed with some tips you’ll be able to easily eat healthy on vacation.
P.S. If you’re interested in maintaining habits on vacation, read more about vacation habits in my recent post: Maintaining Faith Habits on Vacation.
a daughter of the Lord who eats lots of plants. I’m glad you’re here! On The Plant-Based Catholic I bring you nutritious, plant-based (vegan) recipes, explore the relationship between food and faith, and share my unique lifestyle.
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