Eating Healthy on the Road

Eating healthy on the road can be done! If you prepare ahead of time and pack healthy snacks you can save money and make eating healthy more convenient and easy. Below I listed some foods rich in fiber and/or protein that you can pack for a trip to help fill you up. If you prefer to make a pit stop at a fast food restaurant or gas station and aren’t sure what to buy then check out my mini section of what to choose. First, make sure to stop before you reach the point of starvation when the inhibitions to eat unhealthy go down and any food sounds good to eat.

Healthy Foods to Pack in a Cooler

  • Sandwiches on whole grain bread
  • Yogurt
  • String Cheese
  • Cut up Vegetables or baby carrots
  • Fruit: orange slices or berries

Things You Can Bring with that Don’t Require Refrigeration

  • Peanut butter and jelly sandwich on whole grain bread
  • Fruit: Bananas, apples
  • Almonds, Walnuts, Peanuts or other nuts
  • Trail mix (watch your portion size, you may want to buy the pre-portioned single servings to make sure you don’t over indulge)
  • Whole grain crackers (watch your portion of snack foods in a large container as it is easy to eat more than one serving at a time)
  • Oatmeal packets: you can almost always find somewhere to get hot water

What to Choose if you are Eating out on the Road

  • Choose calorie free beverages. Reach for water when you are thirsty. Energy drinks, juice and soda and some coffee drinks like iced mochas add a lot of sugar and calories to your daily intake.
  • If you are at the airport a lot of times a coffee shop or food stand will have some healthy options for travelers.

Twin Cities Live’s Fast Food Eat This, Not That

McDonald’s

Eat This

  • Premium Southwest Salad with Grilled Chicken= 320 calories, 9g Fat,  960mg Sodium
  • Newman’s Own Creamy Southwest Dressing (100 calories, 6g Fat, 340mg sodium)

Not That

  • Premium Southwest Salad with Crispy Chicken= 430 calories, 20g Fat, 920mg Sodium
  • Newman’s Own Ranch Dressing (170 calories, 15g Fat, 530mg sodium)

Save 180 calories, 20 grams of fat

Eat This

  • Hamburger= 250 calories, 9g Fat, 520mg Sodium

Not This

  • Angus Bacon & Cheese= 790 calories, 39 g Fat, 2070mg sodium

Save 540 calories, 30 grams Fat, 1550mg sodium

Eat This

  • Fruit ‘N Yogurt Parfait (7 ounces) = 160 calories, 2g Fat, 85mg sodium

Not This

  • Hot Carmel Sunday= 340 calories, 8g Fat, 160mg sodium

Save 180 calories, 6 grams Fat, 75mg sodium

Eat This
  • Grilled Honey Mustard Snack Wrap= 260 calories, 9g Fat, 800mg sodium
Not This
  • Premium Crispy Chicken Club Sandwich= 620 calories, 29g Fat, 1200mg sodium
Save 360 calories, 20 grams Fat, 400mg sodium

Subway

Eat This

  • Sweet Onion Chicken Teriyaki 6’’ sub = 380 calories, 4.5g Fat, 900mg sodium

Not That

  • Chicken and Bacon Ranch 6’’ Sub = 570 calories, 28g Fat, 1080mg sodium

Save 190 calories, 23.5 grams Fat, 180mg sodium

Eat This

  • Chicken Tortilla Soup (10 ounces) = 110 calories, 1.5g Fat, 440mg sodium

Not That

  • Chili Con Carne Soup (10 ounces)  = 240 calories, 11g Fat, 950mg sodium

Save 130 calories, 9.5 grams Fat, 510mg sodium

Eat This

  • Roast Beef 6’’ Sub = 320 calories, 5g Fat, 700mg sodium

Not That

  • Big Philly Cheesesteak 6’’ Sub = 520 calories, 18g Fat,  1370mg sodium

Save 200 calories, 13 grams Fat, 670mg sodium

Wendy’s

Eat This

  • Grilled Chicken Go Wrap = 260 calories, 10 grams fat, 730mg sodium

Not That

  • Asiago Ranch Club with Spicy Chicken = 670 calories, 34g Fat, 1830mg sodium

Save 410 calories, 24 grams Fat, 1100mg sodium

Eat This

  • Small Chocolate Frosty = 260 calories, 6g Fat, 115mg sodium

Not That

  • Small Carmel Frosty Shake = 680 calories, 15g Fat, 330mg sodium

Save 420 calories, 9 grams of fat, 215 calories

Eat This

  • Sour Cream and Chives Baked Potato = 320 calories, 3.5g Fat, 50mg sodium

Not That

  • Medium Natural-Cut Fries = 420 calories, 21g Fat, 460mg sodium

Save 100 calories, 17.5 grams of Fat, 410mg sodium

Other Tips to Help You Be Healthier on Vacation

  • Start out with a breakfast that isn’t all carbohydrates
  • If you are headed on a trip where you know you will be eating out for most or all of your meals then balance your day. If you are planning to go out to a fancy dinner that night then eat a light breakfast and lunch. Avoid ordering dessert every night. Or if you are doing a big breakfast one day then think small and simple for lunch and dinner that day.
  • Share meals at restaurants that offer large portion sizes. Since most of the time when you are on the road you don’t have a refrigerator it is a great way to stay leftover free.
  • Explore your destination on foot. Ask at your hotel about places within walking distance or other scenic things near by you could visit on foot.
  • Think of activities that aren’t all sedentary. Think of renting bikes, going for a swim or walk on the beach.
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