Summer means hot temperatures, baseball and softball games, snow cones and cotton candy, hot dogs around the fire pit, sweet corn, BBQ’s, county fairs, swimming, biking and boating. It also can include lots of miles traveling to different states, sitting in airports waiting for flights, stopping at convenience stores, and staying in hotels for days on end.
These scenarios are not always the best for staying on track with your diet and might pose a threat to your physical health as they add hundreds of hours of inactivity sitting. In addition, there are thousands of fast food options that are greasy, calorie laden, and nutritionally dreadful in restaurants and gas stations, so read the menu carefully and help your kids stay away from adjectives like “crispy”, “smothered”, and “rich”.
With a little smart planning and thinking ahead, you can still eat well while you travel. Pack a cooler with some healthy meals and snacks in a cooler and try to make healthy food choices on summer vacation. Some easy things to pack in a cooler or grab on vacation include: apples, bananas, oranges, grapes, dried fruit, trail mix, cashews or walnuts, air popped popcorn, fresh garden salads, pre-cut veggies, mozzarella sticks, and yogurt cups or Go-Gurts. Other easy and healthy options include: grilled chicken bites, homemade protein fruit smoothies, whole grain peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, or tortilla wraps. Choose bottled water over soda to help stay hydrated.
Pack the cooler, slather on some sunscreen, remember to buckle up your seat belt, drink extra cold water when it is humid out, walk 30 minutes each day, and have a great summer vacation before school starts again. Oh, and don’t text and drive!