Simple Tips for Healthy Eating on the Go
It's no wonder so many of us eat at our desk or on the run. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average working American between the ages of 25 and 54 spends 16.4 hours a day either sleeping or working1. This leaves scant hours each day to manage household responsibilities or spend time with family let alone prepare nourishing snacks and meals.
With a little planning, however, you can eat healthy wherever your schedule takes you. Before raiding the vending machine for your mid-day sugar fix or heading to the closest fast food restaurant for lunch, consider these simple tips for healthy eating on the go:
- Take breakfast with you. Compared to breakfast eaters, breakfast skippers tend to weigh more and consume high calorie snacks and drinks during the day. Hard-boiled eggs and pre-cut up veggies fill you up with protein and fiber and can be packed the night before.
- Don't leave home without a snack! Toss celery and carrots into plastic baggies or reusable containers to take in the car with you.
- Keep fresh fruits washed in the fridge and ready to eat. You're more likely to nibble on a nutritious snack when it's within easy reach.
- Look for the 100 calorie nut packages which, unlike their cookie counterparts, offer plenty of protein and nutrition. A note of caution about trail mixes: They often contain chocolate or other fatty ingredients adding to their calorie count.
- At work keep snack-sized canned fruit, crackers, or rice cakes in your desk drawer and store yogurt, cottage cheese or hummus in the company refrigerator for a quick pick-me-up before long meetings.
- Stock up at your grocer's deli. Rotisserie chicken, steamed vegetables, and fruit salads make instant healthy meals for busy workdays.
- If fast food is your only option, make smart choices. Most offer healthy alternatives like yogurt parfaits, apple wedges, fruit cups, or veggie burgers.
- When ordering a sandwich, ask for less meat and cheese and more vegetables. Always go light on the condiments and skip the chips or fries. Most will substitute fruit or a salad. When ordering a salad, ask for dressing on the side so you control the amount.
- While it may look like a better deal, resist the temptation to order the "super-sized" or "combo" meals since they give you more food than you need.
- Take a pass on the all-you-can-eat buffets where you typically end up eating more to "get your money's worth."
- Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water. Craving a fizz? Reach for seltzer water or sugar-free flavored packets to add to your water. Some packets even deliver a healthy boost of vitamins and minerals.
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