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By: Lauren McRae
What makes a good and healthy travel snack? One that’s portable for road trips or airplane rides (and, if it’s for airplanes, it needs to make it past TSA inspection). Also, they’re food choices that will not only nourish you but satisfy your hunger in-between stops. Traveling can mean long periods of sitting in a car, on a train, bus or plane. By snacking, you’ll find yourself less irritable and less guilty with nutritious options.
Aim between 100 and 150 calories per snack for women, 200 calories for men, with 15 to 20 grams of protein for satiety.
Try these snacks recommended by Lisa Zoberman, MPH, RDN, LDN, Registered Dietitian.
Relax and munch on a handful of these tasty green nuts packed with protein and healthy fats. They’re also a good source of fiber and loaded with nutrients like potassium, phosphorus, vitamin B6, thiamin, copper and manganese.
Toss aside the potato chips and opt for two or three cups of freshly-popped popcorn. These airy bites will satisfy your craving for something salty and crunchy. Opt for popcorn that's popped with a light coat of butter or sunflower oil and is lightly salted.
Eat alone or roll up some rice and veggies into little sushi rolls. Seaweed snacks are super light and nourishing. Seaweed contains iodine and tyrosine, which supports thyroid function. It also contains lots of fiber and polysaccharides that support gut health. Plus, they'll satisfy your crunch craving!
For those living an on-the-go lifestyle, freeze-dried fruit is a healthy choice and has no added sugar. In this method, all of the moisture is taken out of the fruit, leaving it in its purest form. Freeze-dried fruits hold up to 90% of their original nutritional content, are low in calories and they are chock full of fiber. Load up on some crispy bananas, raspberries or strawberries for your next vacay.
Fresh Fruit and Nut Butter:
If you have a cooler handy, bringing fresh fruit and nut butter (peanut butter, almond butter or cashew butter) along with you is a good idea for an energizing boost. Opt to dip your fruit of choice (try bananas, apples or dates) in a creamy nut butter that’s full of protein and healthy fats. Plus, it will satisfy your hunger.
Crispy, light and yummy. Kale chips are a tasty way of getting the crunch you crave while keeping it healthy. Kale is a nutritional powerhouse. One cup contains 206% of your vitamin A needs for the day in the form of beta-carotene. It also contains, lutein and zeaxanthin which helps reduce the risk of chronic eye diseases, age-related macular degeneration and cataracts. In one cup you’ll also consume 135 percent of your daily vitamin C and 600% of your daily vitamin K requirements for proper blood clotting.
You can find this spicy snack in most Asian sections of the supermarket. They are usually roasted and then coated in a mixture of starch, salt, sugar, oil and wasabi. These sweet, salty and spicy treats have the piercing flavor of wasabi and help you not overindulge. They contain about 4 grams of protein per serving, potassium and vitamin A.
Usually a go-to snack for travel, opt to make your own trail mix rather than the store-bought packaged kind. Include raw superfoods like sunflower seeds, goji berries, coconut shavings and banana chips. Toss in a few dark chocolate chips if you want to add a little more sweetness. Dried fruit is also ok, as long as theres no added sugar.
These cheesy snacks are individually wrapped which make them portable and easy to grab while traveling. String cheese is low in calories and high in protein. You can choose regular or light – if you want less saturated fat, opt for the lighter version.