Tips for choosing healthy Room ServiceBack to Forum
Anonymous18 Feb 2010
On my travels, I find that Room Service is the ultimate in hotel convenience, but it can also be our downfall, leading us into temptation.
The number of times I take a look at the room service menu and feel tempted to gorge on all the wrong things!
It’s human nature to want what you shouldn’t need, but that doesn’t mean we need to give in to temptation, all of the time.
Most hotels offer less superior food for their eat-in-room clientele than they do for their restaurant diners. This isn’t always the case, but the majority of options on the menu will be snacks, packed with heavy carbohydrates and processed foods, rather than quality meals.
There are the usual fries, creamy sauces and crisps to contend with, as well as the mini bar calling you from across the room!
Here are my tips for staying healthy away from home:
Scan your in-room menu for the same healthy options you would choose in the hotel dining room. Don’t be tempted by the list of poor food choices on your order card, like pastries and muffins, tempting as they may seem. They won’t keep you feeling full for very long.
If you’re ordering breakfast, ensure that you place your order in time the night before, and again make sure that you plan your order to arrive in time for you to eat it at a leisurely pace, according to your day’s schedule, ideally after your morning workout.
Choose eggs (any style), fresh fruit and yoghurt, oatmeal or a cooked meal.
Avoid cereal and toast, pastries, pancakes, cinnamon toast or waffles – all carbs, full of sugar that will NOT keep you feeling full for very long, meaning that halfway through your mid-morning meeting, your stomach will start to rumble, and you’ll find it hard to concentrate!
For any other meal, lunch or dinner, look at all your options and choose something ‘clean’ – meat, fish or vegetarian, with plenty of vegetables or salad.
Don’t be swayed by comfort food, however stressful your day has been. You’ll only end up feeling bloated, tired and heavy afterwards.
Here are some of the foods you should aim to avoid:
Burgers, Club Sandwiches, Fries, Sandwiches, Caesar Salad, Lasagne, Spaghetti, Pasta dishes, Jacket Potato, Sausages, Desserts
Instead opt for fish (without batter), steak, chicken, lamb or beef, with vegetables – the simpler the better.
If you want a dish with sauce, ask for the sauce on the side. That way you can determine how much you want, without smothering your food in goo.
And just because the mini-bar is there, and more than likely chargeable to expenses, don’t go overboard.
If you want something to eat, order it from the room service menu instead of eating potato chips, sugar coated nuts or chocolate from the mini-bar selection.
In all honesty, if you have the option, you’d be better off eating in the hotel restaurant.
You’ll have more choice, better quality food, and it will give you a chance to get out of your room and relieve travelling boredom.
It will also prevent you from sitting for hours, watching TV, drinking and eating unhealthy snacks from the mini bar and being alone.
I’m not trying to be holier than thou – just thought this might help you stick to healthier options!18 Feb 2010
Hi. Great advice.
But even better, choose the hotels that actually promote & enhance your healthy food intake.
Some Asian brands such as Pan Pacific, have a jet lag or time zone menu for room service (Especially the Airport hotels for those in transit), Mandarin Oriental, & Shangri La.
The Accor group are also excellent in Europe, Sofitel, Novotel, & Ibis all quite healthy options. British hotels tend to offer the least healthy or fresh foods. Vegetarian options i often have in Asia, great for jet lag, very tasteful & spicy (As i order asian veg when i fly).
Sometimes awkward to pick you breakfast eve before, when the fresher healthier choices can be more tempting, with a vast array in these large hotels, or fresh to cook. Steak & eggs may well be a good start with fresh juices, & a skimmed milk coffee, but least you can see all when you go to the buffet, & balance a little of each. Room service tends to be all of one type or the other.
I also try to have sparkling water with a fresh lemon or lime squeezed in to hand, rather than tempted by the mini bar sugar.
Access to the Exec floor lounges can be very worthwhile, with free 3-5 day servings of light healthy foo,s fruits, juices, so if you get hungry, I find nipping there is healthier than ordering room service.
Try CitizenM Hotels in Amsterdam /& Schipol, great funky Dutch atmostphere informal swish, n extremely healthy 24 hr food.
But i think you have to match it when you fly, all in proportion, with some gym or swim, or sauna steam when you travel also. An overall lifestyle choice…not many fit guys in Business class these days!
Excellent topic to discuss…18 Feb 2010