Guest writer Andrea Singer shares some wonderful information on how RVers ensure they have good nutrition.
Nutrition can be difficult for RVers
As RVers it can be difficult to stay spot-on with nutrition. There’s the temptation of gas station treats, fast food in a time crunch, and restaurant meals. There is also a lack of refrigerator space, tiny kitchens, and the question of whether or not you’ll be using your appliances.
Healthy eating is important for those who travel full time for a couple of different reasons. Obviously a balanced diet helps prevent and manage health concerns such as blood pressure, diabetes, and cholesterol. Also, as an RVer you are likely alternating between sitting for long periods of time, and being moderately to highly active when you reach a destination (think hiking, kayaking, biking, etc.) It is important to have a balanced diet so that you do not put on unwanted weight during your more sedentary times, and so that you have the energy to explore when you venture into a new area.
Buy Seasonally and Locally
The most sustainable, healthy diet consists primarily of fruits, vegetables, lean meats, and grains– with a small goodie here and there. It can be difficult to cook and store perishables, so it is important to buy only what you know you can use, and learn to use raw foods.
Farmers markets, local farm stands, and co-op grocery stores are great places to find modestly priced, fresh ingredients. These will be the most nutrient-dense foods that you can find because they are fresh and often organic.
In each state you’ll find a different variety of produce, and a different variety of stops. If you travel with an iPhone, there is even an app that can help you find the best local produce.
Always Have Healthy Snacks Available
If you are going to be on the road for a long time or if you are bouncing between destinations, it will be important that you have snacks handy. You will want foods that will last a while without spoiling, and which don’t require preparation, but which are also healthy.
Nuts and trail mix are a great food to enjoy out on the road. Stop by a grocery store with a bulk food section and you can make your own trail mix of nuts, seeds, and dried fruits for a great price.
Protein bars and nutritional bars can also keep you full and supply nutrients, but be sure to read the ingredients and labels because some pack up to 400 calories and have excessive sugars.
Canned chicken and tuna can also be great for a quick sandwich, wrap, or salad, and can be stored for long periods of time. Fruits like apples, pears, oranges, and bananas are also great because they can be stored without refrigeration for days and do not have to be cooked or prepared.
Planning is essential in any healthy diet. If you are going to be on the road for a long time, make sure that you prepare with enough food and snacks to last you until you reach your destination.
Additionally, planning when you are going to eat in restaurants and pre-selecting those choices will allow you to make more informed decision about what you are going to eat and how much it will cost.
Being well-prepared will allow you to have more control over what you eat, and when you do decide to splurge on a fancy restaurant meal it will be more satisfying because you will get exactly what you want.
Having a healthy, balanced diet will allow you to enjoy a long life to the fullest. If you travel full time it can be hard to resist processed snacks and restaurant meals, but you will be more inclined to eat healthy when you have healthy foods around, and when you plan out your special meals.
Andi Singer splits her time between writing for an Indiana-based Jayco dealership, traveling around the United States as a competitive athlete, and working in the health and fitness industry. She is a city girl at heart, but has learned to love long stretches of open road, hiking, and exploring rural areas on foot with her coonhound mutt Darwin.