LEXINGTON, Ky. - Strawberries are ripe, tomatoes are plump and watermelons are juicy...it must be summertime! Eating healthy as part of leading a spa lifestyle is easier than you might think - by visiting local farmer's markets and food co-ops you can buy locally and healthfully while spending less money. Spas are championing the cause by preparing meals from on-site organic gardens, and 19 percent are offering healthy cooking classes.
"The spa is the perfect place to educate yourself on healthy eating," said International SPA Association President Lynne McNees. "In fact, of the spas that offer educational programs and workshops, 51 percent offer nutritional counseling and 40 percent offer healthy eating programs. Spa cuisine can include wine, red meat and dairy products; it's all about creating a balance for your diet, mind, body and spirit."
Don't be fooled by the myth that spa cuisine is bland and unfilling; spa chefs are creating unique and scrumptious meals that still keep calories in check. ISPA members have got you covered this summer with tasty recipes they're cooking up. And, find out what spa chefs have to say about spa cuisine by watching this video. Below are some leading spa chefs' philosophies on spa cuisine:
- Chiva-Som International Health Resort, Hua Hin, Thailand - "Our concept is to provide healthy cuisine with many flavors so guests won't notice it's good for them! Moderation should be in the ingredients, not the flavor. All of our dishes can be made at home using ingredients that can be purchased anywhere," said Executive Chef Paisarn Cheewinsiriwat.
- The Elmwood Spa, Toronto, ON - "Food augments the spa experience by highlighting the importance of balancing nutritional intake with healthy, appealing and varied choices. We offer vegetarian and gluten-free selections, our meats are grain-fed and our sauces are free of preservatives and thickeners," said Senior Manager, Food & Beverage Britwin Dias.
- Golden Door, Escondido, CA - "Our menu has nothing to do with deprivation. Instead, lean proteins, whole grains and fresh vegetables are the building blocks in our kitchen, the very opposite of a diet of deprivation," said Chef Dean Rucker.
- Mii amo, a Destination Spa at Enchantment, Sedona, AZ - "We want to give our guests what they want without them feeling like they're sacrificing during their stay. We want to re-educate them about how to eat healthier, lighter and still be satisfied," said Spa Chef Steve Sicinski.
- Ste. Anne's a Haldimand Hills Spa, Grafton, ON - "Deprivation only discourages - with that in mind, we tempt our guests with well-balanced meals that please the eye and palatte. We use fresh ingredients to enhance flavors with herbs and reductions instead of rich sauces," said Chef Christopher Ennew C.C.C.
The Spa at Pinehurst Resort, Pinehurst, NC - "Our focus is on healthy lifestyles for a lifetime, not short-term dieting and calorie counting. Our menus reflect heart-healthy and recommended daily allowances, combined with proper exercise, skin care and healthy life habits," said Executive Chef Thierry Debailleul.
Willow Stream the Spa at The Fairmont Scottsdale, Scottsdale, AZ - "We seek farmers who know their seeds and soil, ranchers who care about their livestock and seafood purveyors concerned about the health of the sea. We've partnered with local farmers to grow vegetables and herbs exclusively for us," said Chef Noah Bekofsky.
ISPA is recognized worldwide as the leading professional organization and voice of the spa industry. Founded in 1991, ISPA advances the spa industry by providing invaluable educational and networking opportunities, promoting the value of the spa experience and speaking as the authoritative voice to foster professionalism and growth. More details on ISPA are available on http://www.experienceispa.com/.
Spas are places devoted to enhancing overall well-being through a variety of professional services that encourage the renewal of mind, body and spirit.