Published on March 22, 2016

Vacation Can Still Be Healthy

“Why aren’t we flying? Because getting there is half the fun. You know that.” Do you remember this quote from the hit comedy National Lampoon’s Vacation? I do.

While you might not be loading up the Griswald Family Truckster just yet, Spring Break is just around the corner which means a nice getaway for many people.       

Don’t let your healthy eating and exercise habits fly out the window the minute to you pull out of the driveway. Instead, let a little planning take you a long way. Here are some quick tips for good health during your next vacation.

For short trips, pack some simple breakfast foods and healthy snack foods to have on hand. If your travel destination includes a kitchenette or condo take advantage of this. Visit the local supermarket and stock up on some staples to have on hand during your stay such as low fat milk, yogurt, whole grain unsweetened cereals, vegetable sticks, fruit, lean lunch meats, whole wheat bread and bottled water.

While at restaurants, look for menu items that mention words such as grilled, roasted, baked, broiled, and in its own juice. Split an entrée or dessert and limit heavy sauces and dressing. It’s a great idea to try out some of the local favorites, but opt for ones that are prepared healthily. 

Avoid the urge to “save up” for a big evening meal or you may eat more than you intended to. Some people prefer to have their larger meal at noon.  Lunchtime portions tend to be smaller (and cheaper). 

Regardless of your intentions, we all tend to splurge at one time or another while vacationing. Include some active fun in your vacation plans to offset these extra calories.

While packing, don’t forget to throw in a good pair of tennis shoes and some exercise clothes. You never know what kinds of opportunities may pop up.

Check out the local walking paths or rent bicycles for the day. If you are on the beach, take a daily walk, play Frisbee or try a few sets of beach volleyball. Swim laps or try some water aerobics in the pool. Did you know that doing some forms of water aerobics burns between 400-700 calories an hour?  

As much as we all love vacationing, we often equally dislike the challenge of maintaining a balanced diet. Keep these tips in mind the next time you travel so your trip can be both enjoyable and healthy. Remember the key is moderation. Safe travels!

Meet Our Dietitian

At Owensboro Health, you’ll get nutrition counseling from a registered nutritionist — an expert in medical nutrition therapy. Beth Cecil, RDN, LD (right), is certified in food allergy management and is a Lifestyle Coach for the Diabetes Prevention Program. She also holds a Certificate of Training in Childhood and Adolescent Management, so you can trust her to care for your or your loved one’s specialized needs.

About Owensboro Health

Owensboro Health is a nonprofit health system with a mission to heal the sick and to improve the health of the communities it serves in Kentucky and Indiana. The system includes Owensboro Health Regional Hospital, nationally recognized for design, architecture and engineering and the only hospital in the world to be designated a Signature Sanctuary by Audubon International, Owensboro Health Muhlenberg Community Hospital, the Owensboro Health Medical Group comprising over 180 providers in 25 locations, a certified medical fitness facility, and the Mitchell Memorial Cancer Center. Owensboro Health has been recognized for outstanding care, safety and clinical excellence by The Joint Commission, U.S. News & World Report and Becker’s Hospital Review. As the largest employer west of Louisville, Owensboro Health has 4,088 employees, and in FY 2015 saw 18,380 inpatient admissions and 823,072 outpatient encounters. A committed community partner, Owensboro Health provided grants of $702,924 in the last year to health, social service, education and arts agencies across the region. For more information, visit

Nutrition & Weight Management

With the Owensboro Health Community Education & Wellness team, you’ll find personalized guidance for yourself or a loved one of any age—including infants. Count on us to help you achieve the foundation for wellness.

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