Good health requires good nutrition. When travelling as a vegetarian, vegan or someone with special dietary considerations, finding tasty, nutritious and affordable food on the road can be a challenge. (Saying “food on the road” makes me think of road kill. Shudder. An expression not to be taken literally.)
Packing portable foods in your luggage is one way to help supplement your diet. Here are some of my recommendations for natural foods that are light weight, easy to pack and don’t spoil easily.
- Instant oatmeal. Some brands are better than others in terms of sugar content, added ingredients and amount of refined product. Personally I like the Nature’s Path brand. There is a variety of flavours and they often contain whole grains/seeds and single or near to single digits of sugar and sodium.
- Packaged nuts. These can be eaten as a snack or added to cereal and plain rice, providing essential unsaturated fats and protein.
- Nut butter. Cashew, walnut, pecan? Take your pick. Nut butters are also great additions to cereal and vegetables. Make sure to get a small jar, close the lid tightly and store in ziplock bag to avoid messy leaks.
- Marmite/vegemite. While the Kiwis and Aussies argue over which is the better yeast extract spread, this salty goo adds B vitamins to your food. Spread it on toast, mix with boiled vegetables or add to bland rice.
- When supplementing, use foods in as natural a state as possible and add to your meals rather than try to replace an entire meal with packaged meal replacement bars. Though food designed for camping and people on-the-go may seem like an ideal choice for travel, this astronaut type fare can be high in sodium and unrecognizable ingredients.
- Keep food in its original packaging so as not to arouse suspicion should Customs decide to root through your bag.
- Check that the sugar content is in the single digits, the sodium content is less than 5% and the item contains some protein, fibre and no trans fats.