My day job as a training consultant takes me all over this beautiful country of ours. I am a lucky girl, and love exploring all of the places I am sent to meet with clients. Once in those places, finding options for yummy food, that is also healthy, is pretty easy. It’s in the travel time that the struggle is real. Eating on the fly, as I call it.
It’s pretty well known that airport food is not the best, both in taste and in healthfulness. But, throughout my journey, and with my thousands of miles spent in the air each year, I have figured it out (for the most part). I know what my options are in most airports, and have a back up plan should I need it. I’m not saying I don’t occasionally get the airport french fries or fro-yo, but for my own body sanity, it can’t be an everyday choice. So, with that, here are my five recommendations for eating healthy while on the fly (aka in the airport). Hopefully it will help you next time you are in a pinch, and think your only options are chips or chocolate.
- Look at the map of the airport(s) you will be visiting ahead of time. This might seem tedious, but it will give you an idea of what might be available. This can help you tailor your meals before travel to make sure you can stay on track with whatever eating habits you follow.
- Drink lots of water! Since air travel is quite drying anyway, this is a bonus tip. Not only will you be hydrating your body, but you will be filling up on water. Not sure about you, but travel tends to make me want to snack, so filling up on water as opposed to mindlessly munching on something else, is a good option.
- Avoid excess sodium, as you will feel more bloated while flying. We all know it’s never fun to wind up at your beach vacation feeling like you licked the inside of a salt shaker. Think of having fresh salads, raw veggies, or fruit. (On this note, avoid fast food salads if you can. While still healthier, they often times are loaded with sodium.) They can be expensive in the airport, so if you are on a budget, bring them with you. It’s just liquid that is prohibited in the security line…you can, in fact, bring food through!
- Use small snacks to make up a meal. Since you probably won’t find chicken, veggies and steamed potatoes on most airport menus, think of all the little things you can eat to make a meal. Nuts (without salt), or hard boiled eggs, are a great option for protein. Most airports have veggies and hummus which gives some good crunch to your meal. Go greek, with yogurt that is, to get some calcium in the mix. Top it off with fresh or dried fruit (apple rings are my fave airport find) for a sweet treat. And, if you are craving something even more sweet, get a dark chocolate bar. (Reagan airport in D.C. has the best array of healthy snack bars!)
- When deciding where to eat, if sushi is an option, give it a go. I know it may seem risky, but I have had some pretty great sushi in airports. One of my favorite sushi rolls actually came from a sushi stand in the Atlanta airport! It’s a healthy option, while still something that can fill you up.
I would encourage you to include airport food in your plan when budgeting for a trip. It’s usually not cheap. A bag of nuts, or a salad, can sometimes run you close to $10. If you plan for it though, you won’t be shocked, and you won’t feel forced to grab the cheapest odd-ball meat sandwich you can find.
All of these tips help me stay on track, and really come in handy with my need to eat gluten free. I hope they do the same for you! If you have any other tips for this travel lover, please share in the comments below. I always love creative, new ideas for maintaining a healthy lifestyle on the road (or in the air!). Now get packing, so you can get eating! 😉
Signed with Style,