Going off Keto for vacation? Here are 7 tips that will help

I recently did a cruise up to the Whitsundays with my girlfriend, and we decided to go off Keto for the vacation. So I thought I’d share with you what we did. Hopefully, it will make the transition off keto easier for you.  Also, I will share what to do when the trips over to get back into Keto again quickly!

If you decide to stop doing keto while you’re away, you have to make the decision just how far you are going to fall off the keto bandwagon.   If you decide to go full on crazy and eat whatever I guarantee that you’ll have a bad time.  You’re more than likely going to go through the keto flu all over again; also probably have a fair bit of gastric distress and feel yuck, in general.  It may not be the best way to spend your holiday.  If you still do decide to go totally off keto for your trip, you can still follow most of my guide as it will help to alleviate some of the keto flu symptoms.

I recommend making a compromise.  Try and eat low carb when possible with few treats thrown into the mix, after all, holidays are meant to be fun, and sometimes you want to let your hair down and enjoy different things in life.  With this option, I think you’ll have a better time overall

Don’t overthink things.

Ok, you going on holidays, you don’t want to be obsessing about every little thing.  Could you imagine asking the waiter for a list of the ingredients as you try to work out the macros for the   ‘Fried Barramundi with Chilli Sauce’ you just ordered?  That doesn’t sound like a fun time.  Throw the macros out the window; you’re on vacation.  Eyeball what sounds low carb and enjoy.  If you have been doing the keto way of eating for some time now, you know what to eat.

For our trip, we decided to not fully go off the keto diet so if there was something we wanted to have we had it. Otherwise, we went for low carb options where we could. We found going this way allowed us to have a bit of fun but we didn’t end up feeling so guilt-ridden that we wouldn’t be able to look at ourselves when we got back from our trip.

Plan ahead

Before arriving at your destination if you have an idea of a few places that you can go to eat that are somewhat keto friendly, it’ll make your time abroad a heck a lot easier and take the stress out of where to eat.  For us, we were on a cruise ship for seven days that only docked at port for two days.  This made it very easy to ‘plan ahead’ as we were able to Google what meals were available on the cruise.  We also researched some keto friendly alcoholic drinks so we knew what drinks to order for those fun party night!  For the days when we were at Port we just ate what we wanted at the towns we visited.

So this also applies for planning what naughty meals you might want to have while abroad.  If I, for example, were going to Italy, there would be no way that I would pass up the opportunity to have some 100% authentic made Pasta dishes.  As they say,’When in Rome’.   On another trip away there was a dessert that my girlfriend and I were dying to try called a Crount, Which is a doughnut-shaped cone stuffed with ice cream nuts and chocolate topping it was amazing. It’s the sort of unique food that you take photos of and share all over Facebook with the hashtag #Foodbaby.


Keep your portion size small

This tip ties into the previous one. You have found your cheat meal, awesome enjoy it but don’t ‘Pig out’.  If it comes in different sizes, consider getting the small serving.  If the meal only comes as a large, perhaps share it with your partner or friends.  Speaking of sharing, how about getting a few different meals together as a group and share it around.  This allows you to try a variety of different flavours and because you are picking at things, you can keep your portion size down.

When it comes to these cheat meals, it is all about the taste right?  So savour every bite, put smaller portions into your mouth and prolong the satisfaction.  Seriously, take your time with the meal, eat it slowly and relish those flavours.  Another major benefit of eating slow is better digestion.  The digestive process starts in your mouth, so if your food is properly chewed your stomach will have an easier time processing it.  One last benefit of eating slowly and possibly the most important one is that it gives your body enough time to realise that it is full.  Have you ever scoffed a big bowl of pasta down 5 minutes after it hits your stomach it expands you are feeling sick big time?  If you ate it slower, you would probably find half way through the meal you are starting to feel full.

Speaking of digestion, my next tip was key for my digestion woes.

Drink lemon water to help with digestion

So if you’ve been on the keto way of eating for some time now suddenly going off it and having high carbohydrate meal can upset your stomach. So a way to curb feeling sick is to have a glass of water with a teaspoon of lemon juice in it about 15 minutes before your meal. This can help prepare your stomach for the carbohydrate onslaught it’s about to receive.  You probably won’t have to upkeep this regiment of drinking lemon water for your whole holidays, but definitely for the first few meals.  It will help settle your stomach.  I would also recommend keeping your water levels up during the trip to help with the whole digestive process.

Stay active

When all these extra carbs start hitting your body you going to start to feel very sluggish and lethargic.  To help process some of these carbs through your system, I recommend trying to be a little bit active. Resist the urge to lounge by the pool for seven days drinking mojitos (I may have done that for two days straight J).  It can be as simple as something like just going for a 30-minute walk.  However, from what I have researched for the best results you should do a high-intensity strength workout for maximum carb burning effect.  Also if you can do your activity just before or just after you have your meal, this will help to burn off those carbs.

For us, on our trip we woke up each morning and walked a few laps around the top deck of the ship or on days we were docked at the port we went exploring and had some amazing walks.  It was a great way to start the day, plus it had some fantastic views.


Cheat early on in the day

This one is pretty straightforward and makes a lot of sense.  If you have your cheat meal earlier in the day, you give yourself more opportunity to burn it off rather than having it at night and going to bed where it will just turn into fat.

An article I found on livestrong.com talks about a study that was conducted back in 2013 showed that people that had their main meal around lunchtime ended up losing more weight than those that had the same amount at dinner time.  So try and plan your cheat meal for lunchtime.

Use Intermitted fasting to kickstart keto

The trip is over and you’re back to reality, sigh.  Time to sort yourself out and get back into keto,  The fastest way I found to do this is with fasting.

If you are not sure what Intermitted fasting (or IF) is here is a brief explanation.  IF is where you abstain from eating for a period of time.  The amount of time that you don’t eat is dependent on your goal or what works for you.  It can be as little as 8 hours or go as high as 48 hours.  The only thing you can consume during this time is water, however some people also say you can have black tea or coffee and bone broth too, but I just stick to water.  Most people do IF every day, it’s called sleeping.  If your last meal was at 7 p.m. and you don’t eat anything till 7 a.m. the next day, you just had a 12 hour fast.

So the quickest way to get back into ketosis after your holidays is do a 16-18 hour fast and only have one normal keto meal that night.  Then the next day back to your pre-holiday keto routine and boom you should be back into keto.

I hope this helped, please share and comment below.

I wish you the best and hope you have a fantastic (guilt-free) vacation!