The less-than-stellar snack selection at airports and gas stations is a total pitfall when trying to stay healthy while traveling, but if there’s anyone who would have some handy hacks on what to eat it’s Dallas and Melissa Hartwig, the Paleo power couple behind The Whole9 and The Whole30. Together, they’ve built a huge community of health enthusiasts with their approach to living a vibrant modern life.
One of the biggest topics they address in the amazing advice they dole out? What snacks are actually healthy—and can go with you anywhere.
Eating well on the go is just one of the many simple health solutions they lay out in their book, The Whole30: The 30-Day Guide to Total Health and Freedom. The book is a comprehensive guide to changing nutrition habits in 30 days, plus simple tips you can incorporate even faster—like portable snacks you can pack in your carry-on that will get through security, provide clean energy, and keep you away from that scary processed airplane food on your way to a beach vacay.
Their top tip is sound: “It’s all planning and preparation. Are you going to be in a car or on a 12-hour flight? Will you have access to a refrigerator or a microwave?” Melissa says. “Start thinking about the structure of your travel…and it gets really, really easy.”
Here are four healthy travel snacks that will keep your hunger at bay until you can get your hands on your next green juice.
Getting lots of healthy fat will keep you satiated while traveling (so you’re not tempted by the airport Shake Shack), the Hartwigs explain. And while nuts are one great portable source you can count on, olives work, too, and you can eat many more of them for the same amount of fat. Just drain the liquid and pack them in a plastic bag.
For another source of healthy fat, squeeze a few ounces into a small bag or buy it in packets for fast energy that’s long-lasting. It’s rich and satisfying, too.
3. Pack “planned-overs”
The night before you leave, make a little extra organic chicken or salmon for your dinner, and pack it up in a baggie in the fridge. The leftovers will last for a few hours without refrigeration, so you can throw a few piece in your bag on your way out the door. The Hartwigs also recommend smoked salmon (which isn’t as smelly as tuna!) and well-made, organic jerky, like Primal Pacs and Chomps Snack Sticks.
4. Baby food
Yes, even if you don’t have a baby. “They have these baby food packets that are safe for airport security, and the only ingredients are the vegetables and fruits, with no added sugar,” explains Melissa. “They don’t provide a ton of calories, but if you just want a to get in some vegetables and fruit, they’re a really good, convenient option.” And if you are traveling with kids, maybe little one will be willing to share?
Looking for more ways to stay healthy while you travel? Check out the hacks that other Well+Good readers swear by and the best healthy travel snacks wellness experts love.
Originally posted May 21, 2015, updated May 20, 2016.