Travel is often the time when we drop good eating habits and sabotage our health by over indulging.
Topical BioMedics, makers of Topricin Pain Relief and Healing Cream, has partnered with Roufia Payman, the director of outpatient nutritional services at Northern Dutchess Hospital in Rhinebeck, N.Y., to provide some tips to help you avoid the pitfalls of ‘road food’ and make healthier choices when you’re away from home.
Payman recommends that you don’t just ‘grab and go’ when you’re on the road, but rather take control by planning ahead.
Convenience stores, food courts and fast food restaurants offer a plethora of processed foods and treats that are nutritionally poor and loaded with fat, sugar, salt, chemicals, and calories – not to mention leaving you feeling fatigued and bloated.
Whether you’re flying off on a business trip or driving to a beach house, packing healthy snacks ahead of time should be at the top of your to-do list.
Some simple and perfectly portable choices include:
• Natural peanut butter, raw almond butter and baked wheat/multi-grain crackers or rice cakes. Or pack some road-friendly nut butter sandwiches made with whole wheat or multi-grain bread.
• Nuts, fruit and a high quality natural dry cereal to munch on, or trail mix that is chockfull of your favorite healthy goodies.
• A power protein, or granola bar. Check the label to be sure it doesn’t have any chemicals, hydrogenated oil, or high fructose corn syrup lurking inside. Also watch the calorie count and check the fat and sugar content, and opt for one with the best nutritional profile.
• Pack a little cooler with yogurt, berries, low-fat cheese, hard-boiled eggs, or raw veggies and humus.
• For a punch of protein that doesn’t require refrigeration, take along sardines or single-serving packets of tuna and whole grain pita bread to make a simple, satisfying, and healthy sandwich.
• If you want something crunchy, pop natural popcorn, put it in a container or bag and take it with you.
Here are some foods you should be vigilant to avoid when you’re on the road:
• Refined grains/simple carbohydrates (bagels, hard rolls, or anything else made with white flour).
• Bags of salty, greasy potato or corn chips
• High glycemic foods such as fruit juice, soda, and sugary snacks, and forget about diet soda with its toxic artificial sweeteners.
• Anything with partially hydrogenated oils (this includes most processed/prepackaged baked goods and even nondairy creamer, which is heavy on the chemicals).
• The usual high-calorie, high fat, high carb, nutritionally-void culprits at fast food places (remember the movie ‘Super Size Me?). French fries, burgers, processed and fried chicken patties/ nuggets, and in fact most other menu offerings are big nutritional offenders and should not be consumed.
Roufia Payman is a contributing columnist to Natural Healing, Natural Wellness, a newsletter published by Topical BioMedics featuring insight from experts in various health fields.
Topricin is available in pharmacies, natural food stores and other fine retailers nationwide, including Whole Foods, Vitamin Shoppe, Vitamin World, Fred Meyer, Wegmans, and other retail stores throughout the U.S., as well as direct from the Topical BioMedics’ online store.