While my focus is usually business travel wellness, there are times when the most hardened of road warriors are faced with the thought of a trip that terrifies them – vacationing with the family, especially road trips. This is when the perks of solo travel routines cede to cries of “are we there yet?” “I need to go potty” and, worse yet, “I’m huuuuuuungry!” This week I’m partnering with Kendra Thornton to bring you a series of three blogs about keeping the family healthy and happy during summer travels.
The worst thing you can do is present restless children with sugar ridden snacks to keep them happy on the road. Conversely, packing up a family, stuffing them into a car and leaving more or less on time is challenging enough in itself. Wrapping your head around healthy, practical and tasty snacks is another matter.
Worry not, the following suggestions will tax neither your time nor your sanity. All items are store-bought, delicious and high in fiber, releasing energy steadily to avoid the sugar rushes that keep kids bouncing up and down in the back of the car.
- Individual pots of hummus with baby carrots and celery sticks to dip. If the kids won’t eat veggies, here are a couple of healthy chips and cracker ideas:
- Late July Organic Snacks (www.latejuly.com) has an enticing range of multi-grain snack chips, including sweet potato and “Sub Lime.” Their Mini Sandwich Crackers and Mini Sandwich Cookies are good in a pinch too.
- Blue Diamond’s Nut-Thins are handy for anyone who’s avoiding gluten. These nut and rice cracker snacks come in several flavors including sea salt, almond, hazelnut and pecan.
- Fresh fruit should always be on hand instead of candy. Little pots of berries, bananas and apples are good bets. Peeling mangoes or even oranges in the back of the car might not be so appealing.
- For the younger kids, visit www.plumorganics.com for a great selection of snacks, including the Jammy Sammy Blueberry and Oatmeal, and Fruit and Veggie Mushy Blueberry Blitz. The company prides itself on using ingredients that are not only organic, but also free of genetically modified organisms.
- Trail mix is another good substitute for candy. If you want to make your own, mix ½ cup almonds, ½ cup pistachios, ½ cup dried blueberries, ½ cup coconut flakes and ¼ cup raw chocolate nibs.
- Use bottles of drinking water as ice blocks for your cooler so there’s always something to drink. Keep away from juice and soda as much as possible because of the added sugar.