The Best and Worst Airline Foods2 min read
When you’re stuck on a plane for hours at a time, you’re inevitably going to get hungry. When a flight attendant comes down your aisle with drinks, meals to purchase or the rare free snack, it can be easy to make a poor decision for your health simply because you’re starving.
Sometimes when we’re hungry or just plain bored, eating healthy might not be at the forefront of our mind, but with these tips, you can be sure to pick the healthiest option the next time you’re feeling famished on a flight.
This might be obvious, but the candy, chips, cookies and crackers being offered on your flight aren’t healthy. They’re high in sugar, sodium and fat and they’re super processed. All of that adds up to a heftier waistline and diet guilt. Not to mention the inevitable crash and subsequent sluggishness when you arrive at your destination.
It’s not breaking news that soda isn’t good for you. Soda, even the diet variety, has been linked to numerous health problems, including weight gain, poor dental health, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Plus, soda adds excess calories and tons of sugar into your diet.
You’re better off sticking to water as your beverage of choice. If you feel like you need some caffeine, black coffee and unsweetened teas are healthy options for you too.
There are still a few airlines that offer free on-flight snacks, including Southwest Airlines and JetBlue. In the event they offer you a few different options for a snack, always pick the nuts. Southwest has salted peanuts and JetBlue offers a nut mix. While some of the snacks, such as wheat thins crackers, may appear healthy, they tend to be empty-calorie snacks.
If you go with the nuts, you’re picking something that is a natural, wholesome food containing healthy fat that is more likely to fill you up than a more processed snack option. Beware of honey-roasted nuts – they have added sugar.
Research ahead of time
Some airlines willingly provide their in-flight snacks and meals’ nutritional information online, including Virgin America. Some have special vegetarian, gluten free and diabetic options that you can order beforehand and have it set aside for you on your flight.
If your airline doesn’t make nutritional information readily available, the website dietdetective.com does all of the work for you – obtaining all of the nutritional information directly from airlines and breaking down how many calories are in each food option, picking out your healthiest option for you and calculating how much exercise you need to do to burn it off. They also score each airline based on their healthy offerings.
Bring your own
If all else fails, take a little time to look for healthy snacks in the airport before boarding. Chances are you’ll be able to find fresh fruit, healthy yogurts and more to bring on the plane with you. This ensures you’ll have something healthy to eat and takes the guesswork out of what to choose.
Photo from sheknows.com.