Guest Blogger: Maryn Brown, B.S. Dietetics at SF State
Start the engines, hang your wreaths, light the menorahs!!! The beginning of the holiday season is upon us and it is time to break out your Snuggies. This time of the year can be stressful and traveling can only add to the madness. It is too easy to hit the drive-thru and grab a “value” meal or stop at a convenience store and stock up on chips and junk food on your long drive home. Meals purchased on planes can be high in calories, loaded with sodium, and not even tasty. After a long trip and eating all of that unhealthy food, you end up feeling sluggish and question why you just didn’t bring your own healthy food to eat and save a few bucks.
Planning ahead and preparing food is the key to eating healthfully. The Container Store is your best friend while traveling. They have every kind of container you can image to help keep your food separated and in perfect condition. Having your food portioned out will help you from mindlessly eating tons of calories. Below are few ideas for when you are flying or driving:
Bring a water bottle that you can fill up with water once you have gone through security. Pack some sliced lemons to toss into your bottle to give your water a flavor boost.
Pack healthy snacks like sliced fruit with nuts or string cheese, bean dip or hummus (3.4 oz. or less) with crunchy veggies, or your favorite snack bar.
Be aware that liquids or gel-like foods (salad dressing, yogurt, etc.) need to be less than 3.4 oz. according to TSA regulations. They have no problem throwing out the jam that your grandma made for you to take home!
Whatever dish you made the night before double up on and bring that as your meal on the plane.
Make sure not to bring smelly foods like tuna or eggs that will stink up the airplane. Your fellow passengers will thank you.
Having a shower caddy with non-refrigerated goods helps to keep food organized and easily accessible in the car. Throw your favorite pre-portioned healthy snacks in the caddy.
Bring small bags to throw trash in so that you can easily throw it out when you stop for gas.
Pack a cooler with perishable food items like pre-peeled hard-boiled eggs, whole-wheat pasta with veggies and chicken, or turkey wraps.
The Digestible; a site for easy to understand food, nutrition, health, and energy balance information.