If you’re a frequent traveler, you probably understand how challenging it is to eat decent and healthy food while traveling, most especially when you’re at the airport.
Admit it, it’s easy to be swayed into buying salty snacks and skipping your healthy eating habits when you’re at an airport full of temptations – from sweet treats to sodium-packed chips to fast food.
Here’s the thing: What you eat at the airport can significantly affect how you feel during your entire flight and worse and in some cases, your entire trip.
Luckily, you can prevent this from happening by knowing the best foods to eat at the airport! Get to know which foods can help satisfy your stomach rumblings and leave you feeling good before and during your flight on this list.
Food from home
Nutritionists believe that one of the smartest foods you can eat at the airport are the foods that you have at home. Thankfully, you can easily bring your culinary creations through security!
Before you head to the airport, you can prepare healthy sandwiches at home. This airport meal idea not only helps to ensure you’re eating nutritious food but also makes you spend less.
Pre-packaged food at the airport usually costs more, so it’s best to bring your own. By doing this, you also get full control of what you put in your tummy, which is a great preventive measure from feeling sick during your flight.
Tip: Keep your packed foods fresh and tasting oh-so-good by using a quality lunch box!
Fresh fruits or veggies
Fresh fruits and veggies are always a great idea! The good news is, you are more likely to spot them sitting pretty near a cash register somewhere.
Fresh produce like fruits are chock-full of good-for-your-health nutrients. They also boast generous amounts of fiber and water, helping to keep you satiated and energized during your flight.
Poor food choices made at the airport are usually triggered by travel stress or anxiety. If you don’t keep yourself full, you are more likely to snack on sugar-filled treats or junk foods.
Eating protein-rich foods such as hard-boiled eggs or beef jerky with some healthy fats like seeds and nuts will not only keep your hunger at bay but leave you feeling satiated for longer, too.
What’s more, these delicious foods are super portable too, making them a hassle-free airport grub!
If you want to doze off during long flights, bedtime snacks are your best bet. Eating snacks for slumber can help give you some shut-eye as they contain compounds that induce sleep.
Experts recommend snacking on healthy bedtime snacks such as whole grain cereals, scrambled eggs, peanut butter sandwich or yogurt parfait.
These wholesome and nutritious meal options may assist your overall sleep quality, especially when you’re traveling for long flights.
Bringing your own food at the airport is not only convenient but beneficial as well, especially if you have food intolerances.
People suffering from lactose intolerance, for example, may find eating well while traveling even more difficult as their food choices may be limited.
So, how can you beat this ordeal?
If you have food allergies or intolerances, bringing your own food is the best way to go. Breakfast staples are probably one of the easiest meals to prepare and pack ahead since many of them don’t need refrigeration.
You can bring a PB&J sandwich, breakfast muffins, banana bread or gluten-free oatmeal squares. These breakfast staples are incredibly rich in flavor and nutritional punch, too!
Junk foods are loaded with processed sugar, excess fat, simple carbohydrates, and other ingredients that you probably can’t even pronounce. What’s worse, they also tend to be high in sodium content.
Snacking on junk food may also contribute to feelings of exhaustion as they lack nutrients that help keep your body healthy and energized.
But here’s some good news:
There’s a better way to respond to your snack cravings! Fortunately, there are healthier alternatives for chips and crackers such as snap peas, and you can buy them in many airports nowadays.
Or you can try this, too: Instead of potato chips, you can prepare and bring your own baked kale chips!
Kale is packed with nutrients that offer several amazing health benefits like reduced inflammation, better bone health, and even lower risk of cancer.
To make your own baked kale chips, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Cut the kale leaves into bite-size pieces and lay on a baking sheet. Drizzle it with olive oil and season with salt. Then bake until crisp for about 20 minutes.
This healthier snack option is also customizable! You can perk up its flavor and nutritional value by seasoning it with your favorite herbs and spices.
Seeds and nuts
Nothing screams convenience louder than seeds and nuts! These healthy snacks typically come in pre-packaged bags, so they’re easy to bring wherever you go.
What’s more, nuts and seeds not only provide convenience but a vast array of nutrients, healthy fats, protein, fiber, and health perks, too!
But of course, you need to watch your sodium intake when snacking on them. It’s best to get their unsalted versions and observe portion control.
A little indulgence won’t hurt, especially if you’re treating yourself to healthier options like dark chocolates! Nix the sugary candies and other sweet treats and opt for this better alternative.
Dark chocolates are loaded with flavonoid compounds that have antioxidant effects as well as other essential nutrients like magnesium, iron, and fiber.
They have also been linked with a number of impressive health benefits such as reduced risk of cell damage, and improved mood as dark chocolates also contain serotonin or the “happy chemical”.
Here’s a tip: Aim for a dark chocolate fix that contains 70 to 80 percent cocoa. You can snack on a few squares to satisfy your cravings or settle your stomach rumblings.
More Tips on Eating Healthy While Traveling
The foods that you eat play a major role in your trip. One wrong choice and you expose yourself to the risk of food poisoning or traveler’s diarrhea.
These mishaps can significantly affect your trip and defeat your purpose for traveling, which is usually for merry-making and relaxation.
So, here are a few more tips on eating healthy while traveling, so you can keep yourself in good condition, and maximize your adventures:
Stock up on non-perishable snacks
It’s nice to be spontaneous sometimes and skip your pre-determined itinerary. But the challenge here is you’ll never know what to expect at your spontaneous destination.
In times when you feel like following your adventurous feet with no concrete plans or whatsoever, it helps to have a good snack on standby.
This will save you from starving when you are from a hotel or a restaurant or when the food choices don’t seem to entice your appetite or are very expensive.
Here’s what you can pack:
Make sure that you have enough (but the more, the better) non-perishable snacks like protein bars, dried nuts, and jerky. These quick bites can help prevent your “hangry” tendencies.
If you don’t feel like packing a bunch of snacks before your flight, you can hit the local grocery store when you arrive and stock up on these convenient snacks.
Take your breakfast
Whether you’re traveling by car, bus, train, plane or boat, you need to take your breakfast. Doing so will prevent you from resorting to just any breakfast meal at the airport or train station that is usually not satisfying.
Taking a nutritious breakfast at home before you set off for your journey will also help ensure that you are well-prepared for the day’s adventures.
Skip airplane meals and bring your own
Preparing your own meals at home will let you know what goes in your meals because you have full control over it. This travel hack can ensure that your meal is not only satisfying but nutritious, too.
Plus, this will help you save bucks because you no longer have to pay extra for overpriced airplane meals.
Eat more veggies
It’s so easy to skip your healthy eating routine when you’re traveling but don’t. Try your best to get as many veggies as possible in your plate even when you’re eating out.
If you want to explore local delicacies, you may freely do so, but it’s best to enjoy them alongside a vegetable dish. This will help supply your nutritional requirement for the duration of your trip.
Identify local food hubs that offer nutritious food choices
When planning your itinerary, also include local restaurants and supermarkets that offer healthy food options. This way, you’ll know exactly where to head when you wish to load up on food that you consider nutritious and good for you.
Always bring a reusable water bottle
Hydration is key to staying healthy and feeling good. Make sure that you have a reusable water bottle handy at all times. This is not only cost-efficient but environment-friendly, too.
It is also beneficial when potent water isn’t available. Just make sure to empty it when you’re headed back to the airport so that security officials won’t have to ask you to throw it away.
What you eat before your flight can make a huge impact on how you feel during your journey. Make sure that you choose only quality, nutritious foods that’ll settle your hunger and help make you feel better.
It’s also best to pack your own food, so you can have full control over what goes inside your body. And don’t forget to eat well, so you can enjoy your whole trip, too!