Healthy Meals on Vacations

Vacations never seem to last long enough. For most of us, they also come too infrequently. 

Yet, the novelty of being on vacation is often what makes traveling so exceptionally wonderful. However, if your vacation plans are taking place while you’re dieting and trying to eat healthier, you might have some legitimate concerns about eating while traveling. 

While vacations are definitely ideal for kicking back and loosening up, you might have big fitness goals that you’re unwilling to compromise on, and that’s okay. There’s no reason you can’t continue dieting while on vacation. 

That being said, it might prove to be more challenging than you expected. We can help. Keep reading for everything you need to know about sticking to healthy meals while traveling. 

Write Down Your Goals

We find that goals are easier to stick to when you have a constant reminder. In most cases, simply writing down your goals in a place that you will see them every day will help you remain steadfast. 

However, we also recommend writing down why you have those goals. Often, weight loss and dieting goals are associated with meaningful and emotional reasons. You might be trying to lose weight for your wedding or because you’ve been overweight for much of your life. 

Make Sure You and Your Travel Companions Are on the Same Page

Healthy eating while traveling can be even more difficult if you’re traveling with people who can’t respect your wishes. While you shouldn’t allow your personal goals to hold others back, make sure they understand your position on dieting while on vacation. They shouldn’t try to convince you to abandon your diet so you can join in on their version of fun. 

Lodge in a Place With a Full Kitchen

Eating during vacations can get out of hand if you don’t have access to a kitchen. While it’s possible to eat healthily based on simple snack foods that don’t require preparation, these types of diets get old quickly. 

Instead, choose a place to stay that has a small or full-sized kitchen. A fridge, microwave, and stove should provide you with everything you need to prepare healthy meals for yourself. 

This way, you can eat before you go out at night and enjoy the area without being tempted with foods that aren’t included in your diet. This can also be helpful for eating while traveling with friends. 

If they still want to eat at restaurants, you can eat beforehand. Then, you can simply have a drink, soup, or salad while they have their main course. 

Find Restaurants That Offer Healthy Alternatives

Eating during vacations, however, doesn’t have to be limited to food your prepare on your own. After all, a major part of the traveling experience is eating at local restaurants, and experiencing the cultural foods. 

Fortunately, restaurants that support various types of diets can be found around the world. Almost all restaurants offer at least a few healthy meal choices. However, some restaurants are more accomodating than others. 

Use your phone to search for options for restaurants nearby based on your specific needs. Then, look at the reviews of those restaurants left by other diners. You should be able to find a fair amount of information to point you in the right direction.   

Pack Your Own Food

Eating while traveling can be simplified if you pack your own food. This is especially true in two situations. 

First, if you’re going on a road trip, dieting while on vacation can seem impossible. Most of the sources of food near highways and interstates are gas stations and fast-food joints. Neither of these options is great for healthy eating. 

Packing your own food will help you stick to your daily meal plan. Of course, you’ll also want to bring a cooler and make sure you pack everything you need. 

The other scenario in which packing your own food is essential pertains to people on special types of diets. For example, people on plant-based diets might find it difficult to find options for restaurants where they can enjoy a meal without meat, dairy, or eggs. Conversely, people who are gluten-intolerant might need to pack their own bread, pasta, and other grains. 

Find Balance

In most cases, sticking to diets and daily meal plans requires balance. Diets that are too extreme or restrictive are not sustainable. They often end with people abandoning the diet altogether. 

That’s because they create a type of “all or nothing” mindset. When people on these types of diets fall off the wagon, they fall hard.

To avoid this outcome, find balance when eating while traveling. If you’re constantly saying no to delicious foods, you’re going to have a hard time enjoying your vacation. 

We recommend allowing yourself one treat per day. This could be an ice cream cone from a local vendor or a cheesy pizza ordered right to your hotel room from

Avoid Getting “Hangry”

Finally, eating while traveling can be controlled more easily if you avoid getting super hungry. The hungrier we are, the more vulnerable we are to making bad choices. Depending on your level of self-control, all it could take is walking past a local burger joint to push you over the edge. 

Similarly, when most of us are past hungry, we get “hangry,” which is a mix of hungry and angry. At this point, we’re more likely to violently abandon our diet and eat at the first restaurant we find, regardless of what meal options they have. 

Having Trouble Planning Your Eating While Traveling?

Are you planning a trip for the near future? Are you worried that your travel plans will interfere with your dieting and weight loss goals?

We won’t lie to you, healthy eating while traveling isn’t always easy. However, by following the advice written above, you should be able to find success. 

And if you’re looking for more travel guidance, stick around. Read through some of our other articles to find more insight and advice. 


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