Road Trips, Travel, and Summer Health
The golden days of summer are here bringing picnics, BBQ’s, and vacations to relax in the warm weather and enjoy a little time off with family and friends. While the extra dose of sunshine does great for our motivation to get outdoors, be active, and up the exercise game, it can be a challenge to stay on top of a healthy diet and stick to foods that fuel us. Who doesn’t want a double-dip, creamy ice cream cone when it’s ninety degrees? While an occasional sweet treat is no big deal, it’s important to keep an eye on our snacking when hopping in the car, on a plane, or traveling the world. Let’s look at some ways to keep plant-based snacks ready and maintain our health during the summer.
All good things in moderation. All bad things in more moderation.
If you love an icy cold soda when it’s hot out, we get it. There’s something about the bubbles, right? This would be one of those extra moderation treats, like once a week, to once every other week, but that’s no reason you have to give up the crisp feeling of the beverage. Opt for sugar-free, flavored sparkling water, add organic fruit juice to soda water, or go all out and buy a soda machine and make your own.
The biggest tip is to keep what you love while taking steps to make it better for your body.
That’s why we love what we do! When a crunchy, salty, flavor bursting bag of chips is exactly what you crave, it’s far too easy to reach for the Takis or the Funyuns. So we took what we loved and made it into healthy high protein snacks. Now, we dive into Spicy Sweet Peppers stix or Sweet Dijon protein stix. What’s even better is these vegan snacks can be taken on planes, trains, and automobiles.
When you’re vegan, vegetarian, or gluten-free, it can be difficult to find a snack that travels well and is permitted if going overseas. Bye-bye nuts, seeds, and fresh produce. So what do you do when you need vegan snacks? You grab some ridiculously tasty Puffs, like red pepper or caramelized onion.
If it’s the need for something cold and creamy that has you fighting the urge to chase down the ice cream truck, two words: banana and avocado! When you freeze these two fruits, they both blend up into the creamiest, coldest, most delicious high-fat, high-dairy, high-sugar substitute you could ask for. Add in some cocoa powder, peanut butter, and a splash of coconut or almond milk to some frozen bananas, and you’ll have a dessert that will give Rocky Road a run for its money.
Summertime travel, even if it’s a long commute to work, is a great time to reconnect with your smoothie love as well. If a road trip is coming up, practice making everyone’s favorites, and before you take off, load up the insulated travel mugs with each person’s preferred chilly snack. Add some protein powder, and you can make it a meal!
Speaking of road trips, a common and potentially dangerous diet hazard is the drive-thru. The kids are screaming for fried food in a box with a toy, you’re considering making it a biggie size, and then there’s the soda fountain where everyone can get the carbonated sugar of their choice. Red flags should be waving by this point!
If this isn’t your standard diet, there’s no reason to make it a treat because we promise you the only part of your body that’s enjoying it is your tastebuds. Once the grease, fat, sugar, and artificial ingredients make it past your throat, the rest of you is screaming to get it out quickly.
When you’re in your own vehicle, vegetarian snacks are endless! You can pack up carrot sticks, apple slices, containers of washed berries, or an excellent summer treat is a bag of frozen grapes. Older kids will love the sweet, cold drops of goodness! For something a bit more substantial, whip up some plant-based wraps before you go. The tortilla will hold in all the ingredients making it an ideal meal while riding or driving. Sandwiches work too, but they can get a little sloppy, especially with condiments.
For a sweet treat that travels well, granola bars, loose granola, and dry cereal are often a mom’s best friend. With plenty of healthy, high-protein options like plant-based protein crunchies, everyone will find a delicious snack they love.
Making your own food and bringing your own snacks is the best way to eat healthy while traveling, but let’s face it, that doesn’t always work out. Sometimes we just need a break and want someone else to do the dishes. When eating out, even if it’s fast food, we can always find something on the menu that won’t make our cells cringe and our thighs swell.
Look for plant-based foods, a salad, baked potato, or veggie wrap. Most places now offer something for vegetarians, even if it’s limited. If you are a meat eater, stick with chicken, fish, or eggs. Beware of condiments and toppings opting to skip the mayo or cheese. If whole grain is available, always choose it over white whether it’s bread or rice. Avoid things that are fried, heavily salted, high in sugar, or filled with unknowns and special ingredients. It may mean passing on your favorites, but your body will thank you later.
Our last tip for maintaining our health during summer travel is to be ‘that’ person.
You know the one. The person who asks all the questions. What’s in that? Do you have a substitute for…? Are there vegetarian or vegan options? Do you have the nutrition information on that? Can the chef substitute the *fill in the blank* for this instead?
And if you can’t get the answers your body needs to stay well, then be strong enough to say thank you and walk away. There will be another restaurant that can give you what you need.