As a kid when we went on a road trip, my mom would pack her staples – a rice cooker, large pack of instant ramen noodles, packs of dried seaweed, and fruit as snacks in the car. Pit stops at McDonalds and gas station convenience stores kept us fueled until the destination.
One thing I learned was that packing snacks was an imperative for long road trips. While this holds true for me today with my own family and car to road trip with, I find that staying consistent with my real food lifestyle helps me enjoy the journey even more. Knowing that I have real food options on hand is what keeps me feeling great away from home.
When we travel, routines are broken and our bodies need to adjust to new rhythms and environments so it’s important to stay nourished. Over stressing your body leads to feeling depleted as you return, feeling like you need a vacation from your vacation. Can you relate?
Here are some simple tips to keep your next road trip or any travel plan a little bit healthier.
- PREPARATION – Make a list the day or two before the trip so that you can go shopping. Packing food and snacks for the road in the same manner of preparation as your clothes and toiletries can help ensure it doesn’t get forgotten. You’ll thank yourself later when you’re stocked up and stuck in traffic, hungry!
- WATER – Fill up your reusable water bottles and stash them in the car. Stay hydrated on your long drive and avoid gas station stops for quick convenience drinks which are often laden with sugar.
- REMEDIES – Bring along some herbal teas to help ease any digestive discomfort or to relax at the end of the day. Packing individual tea bags is an easy way to have a natural remedy on hand with you – all you need is hot water. Ginger, tulsi, peppermint, chamomile and are great for easing digestive issues and keeping your immune system strong.
- BEST CHOICES – there are times when the only meal options are fast food operations off the highway. And sometimes even with the best of intentions that’s where you end up for lunch. Many fast food chains are trying to include healthier options to meet the demands of today’s consumer. I recently got a chicken salad at a Nathan’s hot dog chain because that was the best choice I had at the time. So if the only place in sight is a fast food chain you haven’t stepped foot in since your broke college days, you can likely order a fresh salad or hack together a healthier choice. Goop put together a nice run down of what to get at the top fast food chains.
- HEALTHY SNACKS TO PACK – packing non-perishable snacks along with fresh in an insulated bag should do the trick. Stick to real whole foods to keep your energy steady and minimize refined processed snacks that zap your energy and leave you feeling depleted. Here are some ideas!
- Nut butter packs to pair with crunchy veggies or with fruit
- DIY Trail mix (mix up your favorite nuts, dried fruit and some toasted coconut chips or some almonds with dark chocolate for a healthy treat)
- Fresh fruit (e.g. apples, blueberries, grapes)
Which of these strategies and tips were most helpful for you? Let me know in the comments!