One of the biggest challenges for any trucker - even with more healthy food options coming to rest stops nationwide - is eating right every day. Sometimes, it can seem impossible.
Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to eat better even if you feel like you're hundreds of miles away from the nearest health food store. Here are seven suggestions:
1) Eat smaller meals
One of the biggest mistakes many truckers make is to eat two or three big meals a day, according to Hot Shot Warriors. If you load up all at once, it takes your body a longer time to process everything, leading to wider waistlines and more health risks. But if you eat smaller meals in general, your body has a better time digesting things quickly.
2) Cut out the sweet beverages
Soda, coffee, energy drinks or tea loaded with sugar may taste great and even provide you with a bit of a pick-me-up when you're feeling tired, but they're also pretty bad for you, Hot Shot Warriors added. Drinking unsweetened tea and coffee, cutting out soda (or switching to diet) and eschewing energy drinks is vital to healthier consumption. You might be surprised how much drinking plenty of water helps instead.
3) Pack unprocessed snacks
While processed snack foods like chips, candy bars and so on are loaded with flavor, most people know that even the "healthy" options manufacturers put out aren't all that good for you, Hot Shot Warriors further advised. Instead of loading up on these treats at rest stops, it's often a better idea to rely on unprocessed snacks like nuts, dried fruit, yogurt and so on.
However, one processed snack that often works well, when consumed with plenty of water, is jerky.
4) Mix in a salad or smoothie
It should go without saying that greasy, fried fast food isn't good for you, but even if you're avoiding that, you still might not be doing enough to truly eat healthy, according to Smart Trucking. That means it's important to make a meal of fruits and veggies whenever you can, whether it's in the form of a salad or smoothie (depending on the time of day).
5) Reduce the amount of meat you eat
Along similar lines to having more fruits and veggies, you should also strive to eat less meat, Smart Trucking cautioned. While meats are a great protein source, they shouldn't be your only one, and if you can get them from nuts or beans instead, you'll be doing yourself a favor.
6) Start with breakfast - in your truck
They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and for truckers it certainly can be, according to CDL.com. But you have to do it right. Having a couple pieces of toast with some peanut butter, a hard boiled egg, or other filling but relatively healthy unprocessed breakfast food will help you start the day the right way.
7) Cook in advance whenever you can
When you can cook at home and pack those meals in your truck's fridge or freezer, you have a lot more control over the ingredients you use, CDL.com noted. That, in turn, allows you to focus on healthy options that will make your life easier, healthier and better overall.
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