Is eating healthier a part of your New Year’s resolution? Perhaps eating healthy is something you’re not even thinking about while on vacation and you just want to enjoy all of the sweet and savory treats to your heart’s content. Whether healthy eating on vacation is on your radar or not, there are several reasons why it should be! Here are three big reasons why healthy eating can lead to a better theme park experience.
1. Eating Healthier Can Make You Feel Happier
It’s tough to eat healthy on vacation when all you want to do is indulge yourself in churros, ice cream bars, and Dole Whips at Walt Disney World. But in a study published in The British Psychological Society, researchers found that fruit and vegetable consumption was not only beneficial to the body, but it was beneficial to the mind, and made people feel happier, more engaged, and more creative. The vital nutrients in fruits and vegetables help minimize body inflammation, improve memory, and enhance your mood. Switching to a healthier eating pattern can reduce stress so you don’t have to be Mr. Grumpy Gills when walking around the most magical place on earth!
Tip: Bring healthy snacks like fruits and vegetables along with you into the park. Not only can you snack on them throughout the day, which gives you steady energy, but you’ll also save a ton of money by avoiding the snack carts. If you decide not to bring snacks, you can find plenty of healthy options to choose from while you’re there. You can also utilize the fridge in your hotel room to stash healthy snacks for the times you spend in your resort.
2. Whole Foods Make You More Energized
Another study, published in the journal Physiology & Behavior, found that eating simple carbs like baked goods, soda, candy and white bread which quickly enter your bloodstream and cause your blood sugar to spike and crash can lead not just to obesity, but also to lethargy, and hindered memory and learning. Foods that are high in fat like fried foods take a lot of time to digest and leave you feeling fatigued, which is the last thing you want to happen as you trudge your way across the theme parks. Fatigue isn’t just the feeling of tired; it can also be the feeling of listlessness, and can lead to mental exhaustion.
Tip: Make reservations to eat at a “sit-down” restaurant rather than eating at snack carts and quick service restaurants. There are often more healthy meal options to choose from when you eat at a table service restaurant as opposed to a fast casual restaurant or snack cart. It also gives you the opportunity to sit down and relax inside while enjoying your meal.
3. Healthy Eating Leads to Higher Productivity
Just like a car, your brain and body need the proper fuel to run efficiently. Productivity isn’t just something to consider in the workplace; fully enjoying Universal Orlando requires you to be productive too! If you’re battling the urge to take a nap before heading to Dragon Challenge, or you’re having trouble staying focused during Blue Man Group, think about what you’re eating throughout the day. Although unhealthy lunch options tend to be cheaper, faster and more appetizing, they also contain simple carbs, which digest faster than healthy food and won’t allow your body to sustain energy as long as complex carbs would. You’ll end up paying for it later in the day when your glucose is low. Since glucose provides energy for nearly all of the brain’s activities, spikes and drops in blood sugar are both bad for the brain and productivity.
Tip: Rather than gorging yourself on one big meal, snack throughout the day to maintain your glucose at a more consistent level. If you do want to indulge on a meal in the park, try splitting it with someone you’re with so you don’t feel so full and sluggish after eating the entire thing by yourself!
If you often feel tired or “out of it” while trying to enjoy Orlando’s theme parks, enjoy healthier choices for a better theme park experience. You don’t have to deprive yourself of every single delicious dish at the parks, but not all of your food choices need to be bad! Check out our guide on where to find the best healthy meals and snacks at the Magic Kingdom, and remember that Tickets2You.com offers discount theme parks tickets to enjoy the parks at an affordable price.