Let's face it, vacations can be hard on the waistline. Between all the meals eaten out, the frequent abandonment of exercise routines, and the many alcoholic libations, you may find yourself returning home uncomfortably tight in your pants.
But it doesn't have to be this way! Here are five cities that offer multiple diet-friendly options.
Home to Pike Place Market, one of America's most iconic farmer's market, Seattle is full of healthy eating options. Pike Place is worth a visit even if you don't plan on doing any cooking while on your trip, but there are many restaurants that cater to health nuts in Seattle. The Flying Apron is a gluten-free, vegan bakery. Cafe Flora is a vegetarian restaurant that promotes sustainable eating. Local 360 only prepares food that has been grown or raised within a 360-mile radius of Seattle.
Of course, cooking your own meals is the easiest way to control your intake. For the freshest ingredients, try MOM's Organic Market, which even offers sustainable seafood, and Eddie's of Roland Park, a vegetarian-friendly market that offers lots of gourmet to-do dishes. If you're eating out, One World Cafe is both "planet and wallet friendly." Liquid Earthhas awesome fresh-pressed juices and is a great option for vegetarians, vegans, dairy-free and gluten diners. Great Sage in Clarksville is also a great option for diet-challenged eaters. The Breathe Bookstore Cafe takes an Ayurvedic approach to food. And remember to keep moving. A great place for a long walk is the National Aquarium.
The Twin Cities
The family-owned Birchwood Cafe in Minneapolis promotes local, organic, sustainable, and fair-trade eating options, with multiple vegetarian dishes. Ecopolitan is 100 percent raw vegan, boasts an oxygen bar, an infrared sauna, and a shop full of natural body-care products. What's not to like there? Heartland in St. Paul is local cuisine created with local, organic, sustainable ingredients. The menu changes daily, depending on the produce of the day, so every visit will feel like the first time.
Boston is a city full of students, most of whom of are clamoring for healthy eating options to avoid the dreaded freshmen fifteen. One of their best bets is the Clover Food Truck, which has become a whole fleet of trucks and some permanent locations. One of Clover Food Lab's missions is to redefine "fast food." All their food is prepared fresh everyday, and their service time is just less than 3.5 minutes, just a little slower than McDonald's. Q Restaurant in Cambridge specializes in a healthy hotpot, with only fresh, high-quality ingredients. Boston's famous for it's Italian-American food, but Erbaluce is great Italian without all the butter and cream.
Chicago is famous for its pizza, but it has plenty more to offer in the food department. Karyn's, which currently has three locations in the Windy City, is a vegan mecca for Chicagoans, and also offers beauty services, classes and workshops for a healthier lifestyle.Protein Bar is a chain that's sprung up all over Chicago in recent years. No refined sugars, empty calories, hydrogenated oils or high-fructose corn syrup here, and they market all their nutritional information so you know exactly what you're putting in your mouth. If your group is insisting on pizza, rest assured that Uno Chicago Grill does have grilled options, and their website will give you all the nutritional information you need.