4 Ways To Avoid Weight Gain On Vacation


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Italy is known for its fabulous food and wine and the Avaglianos spent ten days enjoying the food and culture. I was not about to tell them to skip the specialties of the country but I also didn’t want them to put on all the weight they had lost over the last few months.

Vacations can cause you to tip the scale if you are not careful. To avoid the damage, you’ll need to be mindful of how much food you are putting in your mouth.

1. Sample the different flavors but don’t have to finish the meals. If it’s a really great sandwich or pasta dish simply share it with someone and have a salad on the side or a side of vegetables without any sauce. Italy is also known for its delicious gelato—you can usually get a very small scoop and it won’t set you back with too many calories.

2. Don’t make every meal a heavy one. If you know you want to try a special restaurant for lunch and drink some of the local wine, then make dinner a lighter meal, maybe grabbing fresh produce from the market and making a big salad in your hotel room. Or going to a small restaurant where they don’t mind if you share plates and order less food.

3. If you can, plan ahead and do lots of walking to burn off some of the extra calories.

Buon appetito!

Registered dietician Elizabeth Fassberg runs Eat Food, a New York City-based company that designs and delivers custom food and nutrition programs for businesses, organizations and individuals. She’s coaching the Avagliano family through the six-month Healthy Family Challenge.

(Photo Copyright by Moyan Brenn)

Peggy, Week 1: “How Do You Say ‘Salad’ In French?”

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Ever notice that life has a way of challenging all of our good intentions to change our habits? We’ve all made plans to change only to find that, somehow, there is an excuse. Some reason as to why right now is simply not the best time for that change. Maybe the holidays are approaching, and we know that we will never be able to resist Pappa Tom’s Christmas cookies, so we dig in and indulge. Or maybe there’s a wedding, or a birthday or an upcoming trip to Paris that gives us an excuse we’re looking for to resist change.

This challenge started just as my youngest daughter, Amanda, and I were leaving to join my middle daughter, Katie, in Europe. Katie is a freshman at Florida State studying abroad for the year. We have the planned two trips—one now and one during her Spring Break. My husband, Peter, and son, Michael, are staying at home and working.

Prior to this trip, I have only been around the world in Epcot Center. Normally, I would have tossed all my good, healthy intentions aside. After all, this is a trip of a lifetime. But something else is different now. We’ve made a promise to try and do the challenge of increasing our fruit and vegetable intake as part of the Healthy Family Challenge. And, as Amanda pointed out at the airport, a promise should be kept.

So, we added a salad to our dinner, and bought some fruit for the plane. We landed in Paris, and found a grocery store so we had we had fruit in the room. Yes, we are still eating brie and croissants, but we added pears, and apples to the lunch. Salad or vegetables accompany dinner. Basically, we made a compromise with ourselves to continue the challenge, but to enjoy the vacation, too.

If we can do this in Paris, we should be able to continue to try at home.

A promise is a promise, but maybe the most important promise we make is not to some challenge, but to ourselves. So, if you are taking the time to read this, try the challenge along with us, and remember that compromise is not the same as giving up, and a promise is a promise.

Post a note and let me know how you manage eating healthy on vacation.