Spring Break is finally here! It's what we’ve all been waiting for. A chance to relax, unwind and even have some fun.
Here are SEVEN tips to stay healthy and have a safe Spring Break:
1.) Enjoy Eating Out
Eating out and trying new restaurants can be a great way to explore a new place and spend quality time with family and friends. If you are craving a certain food or want to try the local cuisine- then do it! Listen to your body, eat when you are hungry and stop eating when you are full and satisfied, but don’t restrict yourself!
2.) Don't be afraid to have leftovers
Often times, restaurants serve very large portion sizes that may encourage overeating.Simply eat until you are satisfied and full, be sure to drink lots of water before your food arrives, eat slowly and listen to your body’s cues for when you are full, and focus on enjoying your food and your company! Restaurants usually give out boxes to take leftover food home, or if you are environmentally conscious then bring your own Tupperware.
3.) Follow the Buddy System
If you are going out, go with a friend! Or, make sure that you tell a friend (e.g. a roommate, close friend, neighbor, family) where you’ll be and when you plan on being home.
4. ) Know Your Limit
If you plan on going out and (legally!) drinking, make sure you know your limit! As a rule of thumb, be sure to have one 8 oz. glass of water in between alcoholic beverages. If you are just looking to try a new drink, a great alternative is a “mocktail”. Order a club soda with a splash of fruit juice and a lime/lemon for a delicious, bubbly, refreshing beverage instead.
5.) Apply Sunscreen!
Florida has beautiful beaches and exquisite outdoor areas that allow you to enjoy the great outdoor and soak up the sun. Be sure to continuously apply sunscreen to protect yourself from the sun’s potentially harmful rays and to ensure that you don’t get a nasty sunburn.
6.) Eat and Drink your way to Healthy Skin
Did you know the skin is the largest organ we have?! Keeping it happy and healthy is so important. Our skin is at serious risk for harm since it is always exposed to the environment. Fruits and vegetables contain antioxidants that have been shown to reduce premature aging of the skin! In addition to using sunscreen, adding these fruits, veggies, and beverages to your diet can further protect your skin from the summer heat:
Green Tea: Green tea contains polyphenols, called catechins, that protect against skin cancer, strengthen your body’s cellular defense against UV rays, and reduce skin inflammation. Several animal and human studies demonstrate that green tea polyphenols quickly repair the detrimental DNA damage caused by UV rays.
Berries: Berries, such as strawberries and blackberries, also share the same antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and DNA-rebuilding capacities, as illustrated in several research studies, due to their high count of polyphenols. Their high vitamin C content is also responsible for their warding off cancer capabilities. They not only offer preventative protection, but also that of sunburn relief: the tannins present in berries lower the pain you experience from a sunburn. You can try rubbing in strawberries onto sunburnt areas for an instant, natural sunburn treatment.
Tomatoes: Processed tomato products like ketchup, tomato soup, and tomato juice contain high amounts of a skin-loving antioxidant called lycopene. Lycopene is also attributed with antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-aging properties for the skin. A study revealed that women who had diets high in processed tomatoes experienced less redness and DNA damage after sun exposure.
It’s important to constantly replenish your body and drink plenty of water, especially in warmer days when people are more active and--well, let’s face it--sweaty. Dehydration can actually cause a person to be more fatigue and less alert, which may put a damper on any plans you may have for spring break. Some fun and delicious ways to help encourage you to drink water is to infuse your water with fruits, eat foods that have high amounts of water, such as watermelon, oranges, or lettuce or get a fun water bottle.
With these 7 tips in mind, have a fun-filled spring break that prioritizes your health and well-being, so you can come back rejuvenated and ready to finish off the semester with a bang!
As always, stay healthy ospreys!
Hu S, Zhang X, Chen F, and Wang M. Dietary Polyphenols as Photoprotective Agents Against UV Radiation. Journal of Functional Foods. 2017;30:108-118. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jff.2017.01.009
Claire Nowak and Neil Wertheimer. If You Get Sunburned Easily, You Need These 13 Foods in Your Diet. Reader’s Digest Website. https://www.rd.com/health/beauty/healthy-foods-healthy-skin/Accessed March 13, 2019.
Benton D. et al. Executive Summary and Conclusions from the European Hydration Institute Expert Conference on Human Hydration, Health, and Performance. Nutrition Reviews. 2015;73:148-150. https://doi-org.dax.lib.unf.edu/10.1093/nutrit/nuv056