Healthy Gas Station Finds
You’re on that much-anticipated road trip you’ve been planning for weeks (or maybe just a long drive to work), when all of the sudden….hunger strikes! With no grocery stores in sight and no more snacks on hand, what do you do? I know, I know…the easiest option would be to hit the nearest drive-thru and grab a quick hamburger. However, it isn’t the best option or your only option. Being on the road does not mean you have to forego your healthy lifestyle and drive through the nearest fast food joint. Most fast food is high in excess fats and sugars that leave you feeling sluggish and full of nothing but cravings. So, before you hit that drive-thru, pump the brakes and remember that healthy options can be found on almost every corner! Gas stations (yes, gas stations!) house some pretty healthy snacks if you know where to find them! You just have to dig past the Honey Buns and Powdered Sugar Doughnuts first.
The most important (and arguably the most difficult) thing to find when you’re on the go is quality protein. Protein provides long-lasting energy and helps to keep our metabolisms running on full-speed. Gas stations actually have a pretty extensive selection of excellent protein options! Protein can be found in the form of low sodium jerky and snack sticks, unsalted nuts, tuna, and low fat string cheese. Keep an eye out for low sodium all natural options.
Choosing Tuna: Tuna cups are availlable in several varieties, be sure to choose the options labeled "canned in water" and read labels, some sneak in totally useless sugar. Keep an eye out for low sodium all natural options.
Expert tip: Take a box of MRC Protein Bars with you anytime you travel to ensure you have high quality, satisfying protein.
In addition to quality protein, healthy fats are extremely important and will ensure that you stay full and satisfied during that long drive. Gas stations surprisingly provide quite the host of healthy fats. Look for unsalted nuts, seeds and nut butter packets.
You can also bulk up your fiber intake on the road with a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables! Options available can include bananas, apples, oranges, cut vegetables and more! Choose these over canned items that may have added sugar and sodium.
Lastly, look for whole grains. Whole grains are rich in fiber and help to stabilize your blood sugar. Stabilized blood sugar equals less cravings and longer satiety! You should be able to locate whole grain crackers, whole grain cereals, and air popped popcorn.
These are just a few options found inside an average gas station. Pair a few of these foods with a nice bottle of cold water, and you’ve got yourself a healthy meal or snack to get you from point A to point B. Don’t let the hot dogs and Slurpies fool you. Not all gas station foods are laden with excess fat and sugar. With these tips and the knowledge of what to look for, you can enjoy your next road trip (or commute to work) knowing you have plenty of options! After all, we all want convenient foods that won’t completely derail our weight-loss efforts.
Now, you know where to find them! Happy driving!
Note: MRC menus vary, please select items based on your menu options.
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