By: Deb Siewing, Friend and Former Dragonfly Coach
I know Halloween is over, but I recently experienced a scare. It was about nutrition and my body.
A week ago, I was on a family vacation to Disney World and Universal Studios. Now, we were planning on attending the Halloween Horror Nights and Disney Halloween, so I knew I would be frightened at one point or another. I just didn’t think the major shock would be after I got home!
During vacation, not only did I feel heavy and bloated, but I also ended up feeling like I was getting sick and weak. Reflecting back, I can now blame this on my nutrition — or lack thereof. It’s not how much I ate, but what I ate that had the impact on my health.
Pretzels with mouse ears, ice cream with mouse ears, popcorn that looks like mouse ears, cookies, marshmallow treats — everything looks like so much fun to eat and it’s everywhere. It’s quick, easily accessible, and can all be washed down with a yummy iced Venti Something from Starbucks!
So, how exactly did this happen? What are the signs to watch out for to make sure this doesn’t happen to you? Let me tell you!
1) I didn’t practice mindful eating.
As a matter of fact, I often had a hard time recalling what exactly I’d eaten. It was all on the go, quick, easy, and at the time, filled a hunger void. I was a victim of the “I’m gonna grab something real fast before I get hungry” mindset.
2) Salt, salt and more salt.
For someone who doesn’t salt their food or eat a lot of salty foods at home, I sure made up for it on this vacation. Processed and on-the-go foods tend to have more salt than we’re normally used to consuming. For this reason, the body tends to regulate that extra sodium consumption by hanging on to extra water until all is back in balance. And that makes you feel bloated. But did you know drinking water can help reduce that feeling? Which brings me to….
3) Not Enough Water
Yes, I carried a water bottle with me, and I think one day I even refilled it. However, I was thirsty almost all the time. And warmer temps + less water + more salt = a one-way ticket to dehydration.
4) Carb City.
Not only did I pitch a tent in Carb City, I think I became mayor! I always eat carbs, however, on normal days, I’m driven by protein. On this trip, due to my choices, I reversed my usual protein/carb ratio and sent my body reeling. Eating extra refined carbs can also contribute to the body retaining extra water and getting that “bloating” feeling. Boy, did I find that out the hard way!
So, that was my Disney World scare, and I share it in the hopes that you don’t fall victim to the same! My recommendation to avoid experiencing this particular scare is to:
Be prepared and plan.
Being out of town or on vacation doesn’t mean you have an EAT ALL THE FOOD FREE card. It means you may need to be more aware of how quickly and easily choices accumulate and become frightening to your body. Whether you’re going out of town for a one-day business trip or heading to the happiest place on earth for a week, be prepared by being mindful.