A lot of people are on the road this holiday season. A lot.
In fact, of the 39 percent of people who said they were going to travel this season, 75 percent noted that they would be going over the hills to Grandma’s house from over 30,000 feet up in the air: by airplane.
The holidays are stressful, let’s face it. Traveling just makes it more so.
Even if we’re traveling for business, then we’re away from our family, and that can be a stress, too.
Healthy eating — and often even any eating, at all — is often bypassed or relegated to the “if I have time” list of things that we hope to do, only if the time spent on security check-in lines, baggage claims, road trips, cab rides and everything else doesn’t get in the way first.
To help us find the healthy in the land of un-health, we put together 5 things we can do to eat more healthfully while traveling, not only during the holidays but at any time of year.
1. Eat a Healthy Breakfast
Breakfast jump-starts your metabolism, helping you burn calories the whole day. It also provides the energy you need to get what you need to be done, whether it’s heading to the airport or driving to the obligatory in-laws festivus.
In fact, the moment you wake up, the blood sugar that your body counts on to make your muscles and brain be their best is usually low, but breakfast helps replenish that.
When the body doesn’t get that initial fuel from breakfast, you can feel energy-deprived, and you'll be more likely to overindulge on high-fat and high-sugar foods later in the day.
Breakfast also gives your body a chance to sneak in some vitamins and other nutrients from healthy foods like dairy, whole grains and fruits. If you don’t eat breakfast, you may well not get all of the nutrients your body needs.
A quick and easy way to keep you from skipping out on breakfast and losing out on a third of your nutrition is to blend up an Almased breakfast shake.
Almased breakfast shakes are protein-rich to help sustain your appetite and carb-steady, so you won’t experience that post-meal sugar crash that makes a person sleepy. Drinking the shake in the morning can help keep your energy levels fired up.
2. Pack Healthy Snacks
Our traveling go-to should definitely include nice resealable bags filled with all sorts of snacky goodness.
Some people like to mix cashews, Brazil nuts, dried mango, coconut flakes and banana chips. Others like to add peanuts, almonds and dried cranberries. Still others like to include air-popped popcorn.
Whatever your healthy “poison,” if you have bags of snacks in your backpack or bag, you will be well prepared for anything the travel gods throw at you.
3. Drink Plenty of Water
Drinking loads of water is vital for all body functions, including nutrient transportation, energy levels and temperature regulation. You need to down a lot if you want to eat healthy while traveling from point A to point B.
Not only does drinking water fend off dehydration, but it also helps tackle fatigue, which can be a mood-sapper on long sojourns.
Plus, it does all this without adding unwanted calories to your travels.
4. Eat Little and Often
Although traveling can easily lead to long periods of time when we don’t eat, this is the worst thing for our diet, since we’re most likely to make really unwise food choices when we feel like we’re starving.
Eating healthy food little and often keeps our metabolism working the way it should, helps support healthy blood sugar levels and jacks up our energy levels, to boot!
One trick is to drink a half a shake of Almased to hold you over during layovers. Drinking Almased as a snack in between meals can also keep you from overeating at your next meal.
5. Eat More Healthy Meals Than Unhealthy at Restaurants
Okay, so we know that choosing cheesy fries, a stack of onion rings or a triple whopper may be an easy choice, but is it really the best?
We can slip in some morsels of badness as long as we are, more often than not, choosing salad with vinaigrette dressing or a veggie side when we’re on the road.
To maximize our health and nutrition goals this time of year — and to cut ourselves some slack in case we do overeat — let’s try to be more grateful to ourselves, and others, in this season. In the process we can also feel good about low-glycemic, protein-packed and amino acid-rich Almased!