Healthy Eating on a Cruise | Is It Possible?

Healthy Eating on a Cruise
View from the back of a cruise ship

The time has finally arrived for you to go on your much anticipated cruise, but you don’t want to put your healthy lifestyle off track.  Can you eat healthy meals and not gain weight while cruising?  Yes you can!  Here are a few quick tips that we are employing for healthy eating on a cruise.

Healthy Eating on a Cruise
Buffet options
  • Skip the buffet unless you’re well disciplined: Most buffets are loaded with fats and carbs.  Unless you think you can choose wisely, perhaps it’s best to stay away completely or plan your meal out in advance.
  • Having coffee? Skip the fancy coffee drinks and go for an espresso or a skinny latte with nonfat milk.
  • Stay away from the bread!  You’ll have plenty of options at each meal that will include bread from croissants, danishes, muffins, and more at breakfast, to bread at dinner. Skip the bread entirely if you can.  You’ll feel better and you won’t have wasted your calories on filler.
  • Start a meal with soup or salad: If you’re looking for filler, these can do the job without adding wasteful calories.  You’ll fill up and eat less of your entrée.
  • Don’t feel compelled to finish all of the food on your plate: Think of your meal as a way to sample food and not devour everything.  Try a little bit of this and that and don’t wait until you’re full to push your plate away.
  • Share dessert: Order one dessert and two spoons and share the goodness.
  • Don’t want to share dessert? Try a sugar-free option:  Maybe you think those desserts might taste, well, less than desirable, but don’t discount them so quickly.  They will be less rich and lower calories and without the sugar to raise your insulin levels quickly and then have you crash shortly thereafter. These kinds of desserts are good when you need something sweet, but take one cookie and not six for your sugar fix.
  • Try to not to consume all of your calories in alcohol: Yes, those drinks taste great while cruising, but you don’t need them all to be frozen drinks, many of which have ice cream or ice cream-like bases. Try a vodka based drink for a low carb, low calorie option.
  • Drink plenty of water: Stay hydrated! Many times you might think you’re hungry when in reality you’re simply dehydrated.  You can get water in any area on the ship such as meal time in the main dining rooms or buffet, but did you know you can also get bottled water at most of the bars?  While on our Celebrity Cruise, we love all of the Vitamin Water Zero options we are able to grab before or after a workout at one of the bars.  They also have Gatorade and sugar free Red Bull.
  • Exercise: If you really want to have your cake and eat it, too while on a cruise, then get yourself into the gym every day and burn off those extra calories.  No need to starve yourself if you’re working out, but don’t overdo it with either.
Healthy Eating on a Cruise
Cocktails — yum!

If you sample everything in moderation, from the food to the alcohol to the activities, you’ll enjoy yourself and won’t feel guilty by the time your cruise comes to a close.  No one wants to return home and find that the numbers on the scale has crept up considerably.

Healthy Eating on a Cruise
Post workout beverages

With proper planning and looking at all of the choices you have, both on and off a cruise ship, you’ll return home feeling good about yourself and maybe even plan another cruise for sooner rather than later.

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