By Scott Colby, Certified Fitness Professional
One of the toughest things to do, or so it would appear, is to eat healthy while you’re traveling. Especially at the airport. I mean have you seen some of the food choices in airports these days?
Fortunately, with a little planning ahead, you can eat healthy at the airport, and it’s possible that you may not have to eat there at all.
Your best bet is to eat some quality, nutritious foods before you leave for the airport. I suggest whole, natural foods with as many nutrients as possible. Eat high fiber, high protein foods that will fill you up and keep you satisfied for a long time.
Make this a big deal. As this is a travel day, your eating schedule is off and you might not be able to eat as often as you’d like. So I would suggest a meal packed full of nutrients. Try some oatmeal, some eggs, and a green smoothie. I start almost every morning with a green smoothie with spinach, blueberries, strawberries, bananas, Prograde protein powder and ether water or coconut milk. It’s a great way to start your day off energized.
When you arrive at the airport, brace yourself. You are about to be surrounded by a number of unhealthy eating options. Cinnabon, McDonald’s, Pizza Hut, Dunkin Donuts – and the list goes on. Don’t even look at these places. If you’ve followed the tips so far, you will have just eaten a very nutrient dense meal not too long ago, so you shouldn’t even be hungry.
What you will want to do is to find a place to get a nice big bottle of water that you can be sipping on during your wait for your flight and during the actual plane ride. But when you’re buying the water, the cashier will try to upsell you on candy, chips or gum. Don’t take the bait. Get your water, maybe a magazine and get the heck out of there.
Now if your flight is on time, you should be fine. You’ve got some healthy snacks for the plane ride and that should be plenty. However, if you have a delay, or have a really long plane ride, you might need something extra to eat at the airport. (Or perhaps you rushed out of your house without packing any snacks –- shame, shame but don’t worry, I’ve done that before).
If you do need to buy some food at the airport, you have a few options. Places like Starbucks sell bananas nowadays. They also have some healthy snack boxes. Just make sure anything you buy from them isn’t processed. Hold off on their yogurt – it’s usually packed with sugar. And if you are buying something from Starbucks, don’t be tempted to buy a Venti Mocha Chocolate Chip Frappuccino.
You can always buy one of those pre-made salads at a deli, but the problem with those is that they usually are made with iceberg lettuce which is lacking in nutrients. Plus a lot of these salads are loaded with cheese, croutons, ham, bacon bits and you might be tempted to drown it with creamy, fatty ranch dressing.
Watch out for those smoothie places at their airport as well. A lot of them make fake smoothies full of syrupy fruit and not real fruit.
If you need a more substantial meal at the airport, your best bet is to go to a full restaurant (if the airport is big enough to have one). There you can always order a chicken breast and a side salad. This will be nutritious and satisfying.
I hope you enjoyed these tips today and they help you stay healthy while traveling.