How to avoid vacation weight gain

Say Goodbye to Vacation Weight Gain – My 5 Tips to Stay Fit and Enjoy Food!

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Also note: While I am a certified nutrition coach, I am not a medical doctor. Information here is not intended to be a replacement for the advice you should seek from your doctor.

Your well-deserved vacation is now around the corner, but you are afraid of gaining weight? Luckily, avoiding vacation weight gain is not only possible but also pretty easy. All you have to do is follow my tips and get ready to wear your favorite bikini! πŸ‘™


3 Reasons Why You Should Not Worry About Vacation Weight Gain

Before learning how to stay healthy and fit while traveling, I would like to debunk one of the biggest fears of many women out there: vacation weight gain! As scary as this might sound, worrying about vacation weight gain can lead to unnecessary stress and take away from the enjoyment of your trip.

In addition, instead of worrying about something that has not happened yet -or might even never happen- why don’t we implement some healthy habits that will help us stay healthy and active also whilst traveling? We will talk more in detail about this later.

For now, let’s have a look at the three main reasons why you should not overly concern yourself with vacation weight gain.

1. Your Body Knows How to Balance Itself Back β™Ž

When the fear about gaining weight starts to creep in, remember that vacations are temporary, while an overall healthy lifestyle is forever! Vacations typically last for a short period, and any eventual weight gained during this time can generally be lost once you return to your regular routine.

In addition, your body weight can fluctuate naturally due to factors like water retention, travel-related stress, and changes in eating habits. Trust your body’s ability to balance itself over time, and you will be rewarded for it!

2. Vacation Weight Gain is Mostly Water Retention Rather than Fat πŸ’§

Strictly linked to the point above, you should also keep in mind that, in most cases, vacation weight gain is mostly water retention rather than fat. The reason for this is quite simple, and lies simply in our increased carbohydrate and sodium intake!

Vacations often involve indulging in local delicacies, which can include carb-rich foods like pasta, bread, pastries, and other sweet treats. Carbohydrates are stored in the body as glycogen, along with water. For every gram of glycogen stored, the body retains about 3-4 grams of water. At this point, it is quite easy to understand why our (water) weight might increase during our vacation. The same goes for sodium: restaurant meals and processed foods often contain higher levels of sodium, which can equally contribute to water retention.

3. Constipation or Slower Bowel Movements πŸ’©

Last but not least, traveling and trying new foods can impact digestion and bowel movements. In other words, constipation or slow bowel movements play a huge role in making us feel bloated, puffy, and heavy! Nothing that the return to a healthy daily routine and, ideally, some homemade detox drinks for instant bloating relief, cannot solve!

On the other hand, remember that gaining actual fat requires a caloric surplus over an extended period, not just during a short vacation. On average, to gain one pound of fat, you would need to consume approximately 3,500 calories more than you expend. This is why a few days of indulgence on vacation, even with higher-calorie foods, are unlikely to result in significant fat gain!

5 Tips to Stay Fit and Avoid Weight Gain on Vacation!

Gaining weight on vacation is highly unlikely, but this does not mean that we can’t put in act some healthy habits that can help us feel fit and active also while on holiday!

All of these tips are based on the core belief that enjoying scrumptious food and maintaining an overall healthy lifestyle is possible. This is what I call “balance”, a concept that has truly revolutionized the way I view food! πŸ‰πŸ

Let’s have a look at my 5 tips to avoid holiday weight gain and have a healthy and happy trip!

1. Start every meal with some fresh veggies πŸ₯•

The first tip is to start every meal -even the more indulgent ones– with at least one portion of veggies, even better if raw! The reason for this is that, besides being rich in minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants, fresh veggies are also one of the greatest sources of dietary fiber.

Dietary fiber plays a pivotal part in slowing down the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream, which, in turn, is key for hunger control. In a nutshell, fiber allows us to feel full and satisfied for longer, while also promoting faster digestion and bowel movements, helping us feel overall lighter and more energized! All of this for very few calories!

2. Savor every bite πŸ‘„

While it’s okay to indulge in local cuisine and scrumptious treats, try to savor every bite. This will not only help with portion control and being able to fully enjoy your food but will also teach you to better listen to your body’s hunger cues and eat until you’re satisfied. Being able to see what is left will help you slow down as well and prevent feeling overly full!

One simple thing you can do to put this tip into practice is to try to enjoy the whole eating experience by tuning into all of your senses. How does the food smell? How does it feel in your mouth as you chew it? What does it look like? And so on!

3. Limit Alcohol Consumption 🍸

Be mindful when “drinking your calories”, as alcoholic beverages might be way more caloric than you might expect! For example, a 5-ounce (148 ml) glass of wine usually contains around 120 to 130 calories, while many cocktails can have up to 300/400 calories or more per serving, depending on the ingredients that are in them. (Those containing sugary mixers or creamy ingredients tend to be higher in calories). In addition, alcohol can impair your judgment, leading to overeating. (This was one of the main reasons why I decided to embark on my Dry January challenge).

Again, this does not mean cutting your fancy drinks out of your diet, but being more mindful when consuming them. enjoy your drinks in moderation and alternate them with water or other low-in-calorie beverages, such as this Strawberry Detox Lemonade and JalapeΓ±o Pineapple Mocktail.

4. Stay hydrated….! πŸ’§

As simple and obvious as this might sound, keep yourself well-hydrated throughout the day! This is not only essential for promoting the good function of all your organs, but sometimes thirst can be mistaken for hunger, leading to unnecessary snacking! If drinking more doesn’t come easy to you, I highly suggest checking out my favorite 5 Homemade Detox Drinks. All incredible for staying more hydrated and filling up on precious micronutrients and antioxidants!

5. ….and stay active! πŸƒπŸ½β€β™€οΈ

Finally, incorporate physical activities into your vacation routine. This does not necessarily mean engaging in overly intense workouts or hour-long runs. You can just explore the local area by walking, hiking, or biking or, if you are near a beach, enjoy swimming or beach games. Physical activities not only burn calories but promote more regular bowel movements, keep your metabolism active and, most importantly, add to the overall enjoyment of your vacation!

What You Should Take Away from This πŸ’—

Remember, vacations are about enjoying life and experiencing new things. Don’t feel guilty about indulging in treats or occasional splurges. The key is to find a balance between enjoyment and mindful choices. By incorporating these tips into your vacation, you can avoid holiday weight gain and return home feeling refreshed and happy.

And, if it happens that you gain weight, don’t panic. Your weight naturally fluctuates and, most likely, it is only water retention. Once you will go back home, your body will steadily come back to its pre-vacation state!

Check out this post for more ideas on how to live a happy and healthy summer: Healthy Summer Habits for 2023: 5+ simple tips for a self-love summer. And, if you have found this article useful, don’t forget to share it with your family and friends! πŸ’—

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