Health and wellness retreats are like adult summer camps but with more kale and less marshmallows. In all seriousness, though, if you're in need of some mental, physical and even spiritual rejuvenation, a health and wellness retreat could be just what the doctor ordered
. The purpose of these breaks is to help guests relax and recharge, away from the stresses of daily life. Whether your objective is to shed pounds, ramp up your workout routine, or simply de-stress, a retreat can help you get there.
One of the keys to getting the very most out of a retreat is fueling your body well for health and healing. If you're serious about improving your health, eating the appropriate foods and snacks can make all the difference. That said, we’re not going to survive on tree bark and mineral water for a week—we need snacks!
Here are 5 tips on what to nibble on during your health and wellness retreat:
Protein chips made from peas may not sound super appealing, but they are actually surprisingly yummy. They have the same satisfying crunch of a regular chip, but are also packed with protein to keep you feeling content for longer than many other snack options. They are also safe for people with a gluten intolerance.
- • High protein content: Pea protein chips are packed with around 10 grams of protein per serving, helping to keep you full and energized throughout the day
• Gluten-free: Pea protein chips are gluten-free, making them a good option for those with gluten sensitivities or celiac disease
• Low in calories: Pea protein chips are low in calories, making them a great snack option for those who need a satisfying snack while still being able to lose weight or maintain their weight
2. Mixed Nuts
Feeling a little nutty? Eat some mixed nuts! Nuts are a great source of healthy fats, protein and fiber, which is great for cognition, energy
and general well-being. These little superheroes of the snack world contain a variety of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin E, magnesium, and selenium.
Benefits of mixed nuts include:
- • Heart-healthy: Nuts are high in healthy fats, including monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which can help to bring cholesterol levels down and reduce the risk of heart disease
• High in fiber: Nuts are an excellent source of fiber, which helps to keep everything moving smoothly—yoga isn’t very enjoyable when you're bloated
• Nutrient-dense: Nuts are filled with vitamins and minerals, including vitamin E, magnesium and selenium
3. Greek Yogurt
Even if yogurt itself doesn't sound like the most thrilling food, Greek yogurt is a game-changer. It's great for those trying to watch their weight as it’s rich in protein and naturally very low in fat. Additionally, the probiotics improve digestion
and keep your digestive system healthy . . . and drizzled with a smidge of honey, it’s divine.
Benefits of Greek yogurt include:
- • High in protein: With up to 17 grams of protein per serving, Greek yogurt is excellent for fueling your body and muscles, and keeping you feel satiated
• Low in fat: Naturally low-fat, Greek yogurt is a creamy, guilt-free snack that you can afford to add a touch of naughtiness to, such as honey or fruit
• Contains probiotics: Greek yogurt is the party animal of the gut world, packed with probiotics to help support a super-healthy gut microbiome
4. Fruit and Vegetable Smoothies
Smoothies are like a carnival for your tastebuds, as well as being full of nutrition. They’re a great way to get a variety of fruits and vegetables into your diet, boosting your intake of essential vitamins, minerals and fiber; they’re also a delicious way to stay hydrated.
Benefits of fruit and vegetable smoothies include:
- • High in vitamins and minerals: There’s a reason why your mom was always on you to eat your fruits and veggies—they are packed with vitamins and minerals that support your general health and immune system
• High in fiber: Fruits and vegetables are also high in fiber to help keep everything moving
• Hydrating: Smoothies are a great way to stay hydrated, especially if you find plain water a bit of a bore-fest
5. Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate is like a little slice of heaven that you can indulge in (within reason) without guilt. It’s high in antioxidants and flavonoids, both of which help to reduce inflammation and improve your heart health.
Benefits of dark chocolate include:
- • High in antioxidants: Delivering powerful antioxidants, regular snacking on a small serving of dark chocolate can reduce inflammation and protect your system against free radicals
• Improves heart health: By reducing blood pressure and improving blood flow, the flavonoids in dark chocolate can help to improve the health of your ticker
• Contains important minerals: Dark chocolate is treasure trove of essential minerals, such as iron, magnesium and zinc
Planning for a successful health and wellness retreat needn’t be a military operation, but it pays to have a strategy to get the most out of it, and planning your nutrition is one of the key elements. In addition, some other considerations to bear in mind while you’re away retreating include:
- • Staying hydrated: Staying well-hydrated is far more important than many people realize. Optimal hydration helps us to think more clearly, manage stress more easily, and so much more
• Getting enough sleep: Put yourself in an advantageous position from the moment you wake up by ensuring that you get a good amount of quality sleep—no screens before bed!
• Practicing mindfulness: Mindfulness and meditation are like ninja skills that can help you stay focused and centered once you get the hang of them. Take some time each day to focus on your breath and clear your mind
• Try new activities: Health retreats are often a great opportunity for trying new things and getting a little out of your comfort zone (in a good way). So, take advantage of the activities offered, such as yoga, hiking and meditation—challenge yourself, and you might be surprised by what you enjoy
• Connect with others: Everyone at a health and wellness retreat shares the common goal of investing in their well-being, and an important element of wellness is connection with others. Take the opportunity to make new acquaintances and be open to forming new bonds
By making a plan to approach your retreat experience in an intentional way, you are setting into motion a process that will help you maximize the rewards and benefits it has to offer. Set an intention to eat mindfully, and commit to trying new activities and fostering new connections. Above all else, set the intentions that align with your desired outcomes.
If you are interested in participating in one of Change Your Energy’s partner retreats in the United States, check out the Sedona Mago Center for Well-Being and Retreat
in Sedona, Arizona and Honor’s Haven Retreat & Conference
in the Catskills of New York.