The longer a truck driver is out of their vehicle, the less money they’re earning. That’s why so many truckers try to make sure that they have snacks on hand so they can keep going and get through their trips.
It’s always been easy to tear into a bag of greasy potato chips or a candy bar, but many of today’s truckers are becoming more and more health conscious. As part of that shift, they’re looking more closely at what they eat when they’re on the road.
Healthy snacks for truck drivers are a lot easier and affordable than you might realize. There are a lot of options out there that make it easy to find a cost-effective balance of healthy snacks you make at home and packaged snacks you buy at the store. Doing so will ensure that you are able to stay on the go while staying healthy.
What Are Healthy Snacks?
Before we jump into specific examples, it’s worth defining what healthy snacks are. There are a few key features that make snacks inherently healthier. To eat healthy, make sure your snacks are:
- Low in saturated fats that can lead to heart disease
- Low in sugar content to avoid weight gain
- High in protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals
A good rule of thumb is that if a snack is processed or has high levels of fats, salt, or sugar, you’ll want to avoid it and look for other options. Fruits, vegetables, and nuts are always good starting points, but don’t feel like they’re your only choices.
Creating Cheap Healthy Snacks
You might not realize it, but it’s very simple to create some of the best affordable healthy snacks at home. There are plenty of lists out there that are worth looking at, such as this one from Bodybuilding.com, but here’s a shortlist of ones that are cheap and easy to pull together:
- Frozen Grapes – These are a perfect solution for sugar cravings. Just spread out a layer of grapes on a baking sheet and freeze them until firm, then toss them into a Ziploc bag for your next trip. Even if they thaw a bit, they’ll still be enjoyable.
- Nuts – Whether you prefer a specific type of nut or want to go with mixed nuts, don’t overlook this staple item. You’ll get plenty of protein and healthy fats along with great taste.
- Hard Boiled Eggs – Filled with amino acids, protein, and other vitamins and minerals that will help keep you healthy, these are perfect for long-distance trips if you keep them in a cooler.
- Trail Mix – Add your favorite fruits and nuts to a bag and enjoy. Trail mix has always been a staple for hikers, campers, and health-conscious people, and it’s perfect for truckers as well. Check out this list of trail mix recipes from Greatist.com to get some ideas.
- Hummus and Veggies – Hummus has taken the health-food world by storm, and with good reason. There are plenty of great recipes you can make at home, it’s incredibly good for you, and it pairs well with crackers, pretzels, and crunchy veggies like carrots and celery.
Healthy Packaged Snacks
The options listed above are certainly worth creating when you’re at home. But there are plenty of great packaged items to choose from when you don’t have a place or the time to prepare food. These include:
- Energy bars that aren’t too high in sugar
- String cheese
- Pre-made hummus
- Pouched tuna or salmon
When choosing healthy packaged snacks, make sure to look at their ingredients and nutritional information. Choose items that are low in sodium, low in sugar, and low in trans fats. Taking just a few seconds to look at the package with these criteria in mind will help you select items that are actually good for you, rather than ones that use buzzwords (e.g., “gluten free”) to seem like healthy options.
Healthy Snacks Will Keep You Going Long Term
As a driver who depends on logging miles to make your livelihood, you don’t have a lot of time to spend outside the cab of your truck. Snacks are important because they help keep you moving. But don’t just choose any old snack. It’s important to select the right ones — ones that won’t create sugar rushes (and crashes) and that will be good choices for your long-term health.
We’re sure you have some of your own favorite healthy snacks. Leave a comment and tell us about them.
We hope you snack smart on your next trip!