Combine a Dream Cruise & Weight Loss

When you've thought about a dream cruise, you may have been concerned that your best intentions about eating nutritiously and exercising regularly would...well...jump ship.

Until fairly recently, that used to be the case. Now, while enjoying delicious meals is still a part of the cruising experience, it's not the defining one. Most cruise lines offer healthier, lower-fat dinner options and are also more than willing to accommodate special dietary requests.

"While on a cruise, it's important-and easy-to concentrate on the three key areas of healthy living: food, body and mind," says Lisa Talamini, RD-Chief Nutritionist and Program Director for Jenny Craig, Inc.

"In the area of food, remember to fill up on fresh fruits and vegetables, order lean cuts of meat or fish, and try lower-calorie alcohol alternatives like wine spritzers," advises Talamini. "For the body, take advantage of the onboard gym, planned physical activities, and the chance to dance the night away. Your mind can be nurtured with a special treatment from the ship's spa, by exploring ports of call, or by relaxing quietly by the pool."

Here are a few simple ways to stay fit while on a cruise:

• At a buffet, survey the table and decide what you'll have before you get in line. Wait until the line thins; then take only what you had planned. And one trip only.

• Lighten up your "spirits." Instead of a higher-calorie cocktail, sip on a glass of sparkling water, a champagne spritzer or a virgin Cosmopolitan.

• During formal dinner seatings, request your low-fat salad dressing on the side. Using the "drip-n-drizzle" technique, dip your fork into the dressing, so you get just a little with each bite.

• Dying for dessert? Order a single serving of sorbet or something fruit based and share it with your table.

• Take a stroll on deck after every meal. Breathe in the fresh salt air, chat with your travel companion, and give your meal a well-deserved opportunity to digest.

• Choose shore excursions that involve physical activity. Golfing, hiking up to waterfalls, snorkeling and island biking are fun-plus a good workout.

• Splash around in the pool. You may not be able to do laps but treading water or doing aqua aerobics are both terrific ways to keep moving and active.

For more healthy eating and exercise tips, visit www.jenny

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