Mindful indulgence on holiday: How to make the most of your holiday without compromising your health and nutrition
Finally, the holidays are here! It is time to unwind, explore and create unforgettable memories. Yet, holidays often come with ample temptations to indulge and stray from our regular healthy routines. It’s natural to want to enjoy delicious and new food while on holiday, but it’s essential to do so mindfully. With a few mindful strategies, you can have the best time and maintain your health and well-being. This way your holidays will also help to refresh and recharge you. At Healthy U we like to embrace the concept of Mindful Indulgence.
What is mindful indulgence, and why is it important on holiday?
Indulgence is often perceived as synonymous with guilt, especially when it comes to our health and wellness goals. However, there’s a way to enjoy life’s pleasures while still staying true to our intentions. Mindful indulgence refers to the conscious and deliberate act of enjoying treats while maintaining a heightened awareness of one’s physical sensations, emotions, and intentions. Guilt has no place in mindful indulgence. Remember that treats are a part of life, and enjoying them mindfully is a form of self-care. Let go of negative emotions and embrace the experience with an open heart. This practice underlines quality over quantity, self-awareness over autopilot behaviour, fostering a harmonious relationship between enjoyment and well-being.
Practicing mindful indulgence is an excellent strategy to maintaining a healthy lifestyle in the context of all the temptations that come with holiday and travel. If you choose your moments of indulgence, enjoy them fully, but limit them to just a few per day; it will make it easier to get back into your normal routine after the holiday.
How to practice mindful eating on holiday?
Mindful eating involves engaging all your senses. Your mantra should be; “slow down”. Take time to appreciate the aroma, texture, looks and flavor of the treat. Eating slowly and savoring each bite not only enhances the experience but also allows your body to register the satisfaction more effectively.
Eating slowly and savoring each bite not only enhances the experience but also allows your body to register the satisfaction more effectively.
Tune into the signals of your body, recognize and respond to its hunger and fullness signals. By acknowledging when we’re truly hungry, we can nourish ourselves properly, avoiding overconsumption driven by external factors. Equally important is recognizing the sensation of fullness, as it helps us avoid overeating and promotes a sense of satisfaction. Note down for yourself, what are your body’s cues for hunger and fullness?
During your trip, you may find yourself hungry while on the road, in the homes of friends and family or in new restaurants and bars. Where possible, opt for nutritious and fresh food. Pack nutrient-dense snacks like nuts, seeds, fruits, or granola bars to curb your hunger between meals and avoid succumbing to unhealthy airport or roadside snacks out of convenience.
Mindful indulgence is also about self-compassion. Don’t push yourself to adhere to a restrictive diet when on holiday. Holidays are for exploration and enjoyment. Rigidly following a restrictive diet can hinder your ability to fully embrace these experiences and you may miss out on opportunities to savour local cuisines and cultural foods.
Wander. Move. Repeat.
Engaging in physical activity not only helps you offset any indulgent meals but also provides a boost of energy, enhances mood, and reduces stress. Laying in a hammock or on a sunbed for hours in row can be relaxing but the best way for your body to reduce stress is to engage in physical activity.
Exploring new destinations on foot, trying out local outdoor activities, or simply going for a walk can deepen your connection with the place you’re visiting. Moreover, staying active promotes better digestion, aids in regulating sleep patterns, and allows you to return from your holiday feeling revitalized and ready to re-engage with your routine.
In every sip, find the present
What is the moment the holidays have really kicked off? “When I am sitting by the poolside with a Margherita cocktail in my hand”. Sounds relatable? It is very important to stay hydrated on your holiday but cocktails won’t quench your thirst – they’re the fun cousins, not the hydration heroes.
Practice mindful indulgence with alcohol too, as over indulging can result in hangovers, dehydration, and disrupted sleep, causing you to miss out on precious exploration and experiences. Enjoying the social and sensory aspects of drinking while staying attuned to your limits, and prioritizing moderation over excess. Sip slowly, toast to balance!
In order to stay hydrated, opt for coconut water, herbal teas, infused water (add slices of fruit or herbs to your water), or aloe vera juice. Carry a reusable water bottle with you and aim to stay hydrated throughout the day.
En route! / Twende!
Mindful indulgence on holiday allows you to make the most of your time without sacrificing your health and well-being. Using the strategies above can you return home refreshed and ready to continue your health journey.