MERCED -- We all, some more than others, find ourselves on-the-go. Whether it is our commute to work, summer picnics, camps for kids, pool-side afternoons or sports events, our days are busy.
That's why it's extremely important to keep snacks with you so that you do not get carried away with your activities and forget to eat.
Personally, I could never forget to eat, but I have had the occasional evening client feel nauseous during a session when they realize they have forgotten to eat since breakfast.
Your body needs to eat, needs fuel, but sometimes you only have five to 10 minutes to squeeze in a quick bite to eat. Do not rush to a fast food restaurant. Instead, have healthy snacks on hand so that you can go about your business while eating good, satisfying foods that help keep you focused and ready for whatever the day brings.
One of the easiest snacks to bring with you on-the-go is mixed seeds and nuts.
You can buy different nuts and seeds in bulk, and make your own -- or purchase an unsalted variety from the store. My favorite types are raw-unsalted almonds, raw-unsalted cashews, unsalted pumpkin seeds, unsalted shell-less sunflower seeds and raw-unsalted walnuts. This mix is a great snack that has a lot of good fats and will keep you full for a long period of time.
Do not get stuck unconsciously eating a whole bag because you do not want to over indulge on this snack -- eat just enough to curb your appetite and get some of the nutrients.
Another quickly prepared snack is celery with peanut butter or almond butter.
I really like almond butter so I buy the raw-unsalted creamy almond butter and use it on about five medium size celery sticks. I usually wrap them all together in plastic to prevent them from rolling all around and the peanut or almond butter going all over.
When you use natural peanut butter or almond butter it is much creamier and has a lot of the natural oil -- this is good but you just have to try and make it work without the mess. When looking in the store for a natural almond butter or peanut butter, the only ingredients should really be the nuts. Some health food markets even have a machine so you can make your own natural nut butters.
The great thing about fruit is that it is extremely healthy and so easy to bring and eat on-the-go.
Bananas, apples, pears, oranges, grapefruits, cherries and berries are my favorite fruits to bring with me as a snack. Apples are a great snack to keep with you at all times just in case you fall into a slump and start craving unwanted carbs and sugars. Apples can give you a little burst of energy and help deter you from making poor food choices. Granny Smith apples are my favorite.
Vegetable slices are a really cheap, easy and healthy snack.
When I get home from the grocery store I cut up all of my vegetables and put them in Tupperware: zucchini, celery, bell peppers, white onion, broccoli, cauliflower.
Grab a mixture of all your sliced vegetables and put them in a ziplock bag. Bring a small container with a serving of hummus as dip. You can even bring some whole-grain crackers to dip for some added good carbs. This is my snack of choice while watching sports or reading a magazine by the pool.
I always keep a dozen of hard-boiled eggs in my fridge at all times. Just as I cut up and prepare the vegetables, I also pre-hard-boil a dozen eggs for snacks throughout the week.
Hard-boiled eggs are so easy to eat and an excellent source of protein. If I have extra that I need to use up then I just make a healthy egg salad to put on a salad or in a wrap.
I usually only eat the hard-boiled egg whites but will throw in one whole hard-boiled egg for a small amount of added fat to keep me full. Hard-boiled eggs are also useful when I accidentally wake up late and I do not have time to even make a protein shake.
Not everything eaten has to be grab-and-go, but it is also important to recognize and prepare for those crazy times in your schedule. That way you can fuel your body properly so you can get things done.
Lunden Souza can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.