Eating Healthy On The Run
It's hard to eat well when you're busy, but with these tips you'll be able to make sure that gas stations and drive-throughs aren't your primary meal sources. Learn how to keep things healthy even when you're pressed for time.
Fast and fresh
Start with hardy whole foods-it's easy to carry an apple, orange, carrot sticks, grapes, nuts, celery, dried fruit or even a hard-boiled egg with you. These healthy snacks won't bruise easily and travel well. Throw them in your bag…and you're off! For more ideas, check out this handy list of satisfying snacks under 200 calories.
Overcook and slow cook
When you do find time to cook, double your recipes so you can freeze leftovers for easy, fast meals later. Also use this time to slice and prep vegetables for salads and snacks—and fruit for smoothies-throughout the week. Using a slow cooker for soups and stews is a great way for busy families to "set it and forget it" and come home to a warm delicious meal.
Eating out is sometimes inevitable, and it can save time and stress. While it may be challenging, there are ways to ensure you're keeping it on the healthy side. Some restaurants use this Heart-Check Meal Certification Program symbol designed by the American Heart Association, making it easier for you to confidently order heart healthy dishes. If you don’t see the symbol, there are some basic common sense rules to follow:
- Avoid fried foods, cream sauces, gravy, etc. and opt instead for items that are steamed, broiled, grilled or baked.
- If you know portions are big, ask your server to package half of your entrée in a to-go container-before they bring it to your table. That way you won't be tempted to eat the whole portion just because it's there.
- If you're at a fast food restaurant, avoid mayo and fries if you can. Many fast food places are offering healthier items like salads and veggie burgers.
- If you're traveling and stop at a gas station for a snack, look for items such as pumpkin seeds, granola bars with low sugar and saturated fat, or fresh fruit.
If you keep these basic guidelines in mind, you can stay on the healthy side no matter where you are, or how busy your life gets.