Many parents despair of starting out on a road trip with the family because of the unhealthy fast food restaurants along the road. It’s true that your route will be frought with McDonald’s, Burger King and Taco Belle, and they certainly serve the unhealthiest food that can be found. But by a little planning ahead, you can find food that is reasonably healthy. Every fast food place has at least a few nutritious options.
Is it possible to buy healthy food on a road trip? Wendy, McDonald and Chick-fil-A cover the roadways with hamburgers, fried chicken and french fries. But with a little planning and some extra work, you will find a few healthy foods at even the junkiest food stops. With care you can put together a reasonably nutritious meal for yourself and the kids. It does take some willpower to go for nutrition when trays of french fries, hamburgers and milk shakes abound. When the kids are hungry they tend to go for taste and unhealthy options at fast food places. You’re also subject to being tempted by “mega” and “deluxe” anything.
Sauces, marinades, dressing and sodium are a leading cause of unhealthiness in junk food. One salad pack typically holds enough for four salads and can void any nutrition value from the greens. For the sake of nutrition add just a touch of dressing and avoid any sauces and marinades. Order a plain hamburger or a grilled chicken sandwich. Hold the swiss, mayo, sauces and any other extras. And opt for water instead of high caloried soft drinks.
At some fast food places such as Einstein Brothers Bagels, Panera bread, and Noodles and Company you will find more nutritious food. If you can route your trip around these places you are in luck. By choosing wisely you can put together a pretty healthy meal. Avoid high fat, high sodium and add ons such as bacon, cheese and mayo. At fast food restaurants the amount of calories, fat, and sodium in a serving is mind blowing. As an example, the Texas Double Whopper from Burger King has 1,050 calories. That’s enough calories for an adult’s entire day.
If you and the kids decide to splurge on fast food, it’s best for an adult to order a child-size portion, also order for yourself and the kids plain low fat milk and fruit instead of fries and sodas. Most restaurants have menus on line with the calorie count and nutrition factors. Check it out with your smart phone when traveling, and get the specific information before stopping. Once you see how unhealthy some items are, you wont be tempted to order. Making better food choices and keeping to your regular eating schedule will get you to your destination feeling good and ready to enjoy your well earned vacation.
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