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by Anda Bosnea, CNP/RNCP/ROHP

It’s summer, and the days don’t seem to be long enough for all that we could be doing…
So we’re not always planning well enough and we get either dehydrated, hungry, or both… We end-up in some fast food place or buying candy or pop from vending machines.

Here are some suggestions for your trips:

  • The general idea is to plan ahead, shop for food the day before, prep, and pack supplies.
  • To combine energizing nutrients, variety, and great taste, pack different foods in a cooler in separate containers: boiled eggs, steamed or fresh veggies with hummus or bean dip, apple slices with almond butter.
  • Ensure enough protein, fiber, and nutrient-packed snacks. (See below.)
  • If more than 3 hours have passed since your last main meal, you’ll get too hungry and you may succumb to some unhealthy temptation. A healthy snack (preferably from your home-packed cooler) will rebalance your blood sugar levels and restore your energy.
  • Put in your vehicle’s trunk a few large glass bottles filled with filtered water from home. (Glass is better than plastic.) Use the glass bottles to refill smaller travelers’ water bottles.
  • Make sure to put in your travelers’ water bottle a slice of lime or lemon, a tea bag, a few fresh mint leaves, or a stick of cucumber. The aroma will infuse in the cold water, you will enjoy drinking from it more frequently, and it may help you avoid other temptations.
  • Avoid sugars, trans-fats, fried and junk foods, as well as artificial flavours and preservatives from processed or packaged snacks.
  • Go to supermarkets and buy real food rather than less healthy snacks.
  • In a restaurant, order an energy-boosting combination of meat and veggies rather than sandwiches, pastas, potatoes, or other simple carbs that will leave you tired and foggy-brained.
    • Get grilled meat rather than fried.
    • Choose fish or chicken rather than pork.
    • Substitute vegetables for the potatoes, pasta, bread, and the other grain-based sides.
    • Ask for the salad dressing on the side, to have more control over the quantity. Even better, replace it with a squeeze of lemon and a drizzle of olive oil.
    • Grab a lettuce wrap or a tortilla wrap instead of a sandwich. Or go with a more exotic Vietnamese roll that is using a delicate rice paper as the wrapper.
    • Avoid processed and deep-fried foods.
  • Aim to compose your meals or snacks of:
    • ½ of the plate → vegetables (rich in fibre, vitamins, nutrients)
    • ¼ of the plate → protein (for satiety, immunity, energy)
    • 1-2 tbsp added to plate → fat (avocado, coconut, nuts, seeds)
    • ¼ of the plate → carbs (preferably choose root veggies or squashes and
      avoid grains, breads, pastries, potatoes, etc…)

Enjoy your summer days and eat healthy, even when on the run.