It’s that time of year when we all feel like we need to lose a couple pounds after eating an abundance of sweets and drinking a ton of different booze over the holidays. And while it’s important to get to the gym to burn those calories off, for anyone who might be traveling, one place where you can pack on even more unwanted fat is in the airport.
While recently traveling home after the New Year myself, I realized there are copious amounts of options in airports, with fast-food, chain restaurants and other high-calorie spots as the most popular to get your fill.
Whether you travel often or just every once in awhile, we’re giving you the foods that will help keep you full during those long layovers and flights, while also tasting good, too—so that you don’t need to force yourself to munch on salads. These are the best choices to go with.
My absolutely top-notch choice, any type of jerky—beef, turkey, elk, bison, ostrich, etc.—will be low in total/saturated fat, while packing a ton of protein. And, depending on which variety you go with, some even have a bunch of potassium, too, which your metabolism will certainly appreciate.
Naturally, turkey jerky is your best option, with a normal, 2.85-oz bag of Jack Links’ having about 80 calories per ounce—so you won’t feel guilty actually eating the entire bag.
Just remember to eat it all before you get on the plane and pop some mints or gum before sitting down, otherwise your neighbor may not want to talk with you.
Sure, not all smoothies are healthy for you—with some using pre-packaged crap that won’t do your body any favors—but if you go with the ones where you actually see the person drop fresh fruit, yogurt and milk into it, you should be smooth sailing.
My personal favorite is a Gladiator Strawberry option from Smoothie King, which packs a bunch of protein in order to keep me full. It also only has about 180 calories for a large—according to Smoothie King’s website.
If you’re a human being, you love cheese. Unfortunately, we all know that typical slices are loaded with saturated fats and cholesterol, meaning they’ll clog your arteries and, in the long run, hurt your heart.
Not cottage cheese, though, which is a great way to get protein while enjoying that cheesy taste. High in protein and easy to eat, a simple cup of cottage cheese will go a long way in holding you over during a flight, making you feel a hell of a lot more full than you really are—and not making you bloated like a burger would.
All the above goes for a cup of yogurt, too—other than the fact you’re not eating cheese. Some vanilla yogurt with oats to mix in is my favorite when going with this option.
Egg White Delight McMuffin
Look, just because the Egg McMuffin is served at McDonald’s doesn’t mean it’s terrible for you! Of course, you’ll have to maintain some discipline and avoid going with the meal by packing on the carbs and sugars from hash browns and orange juice, but that’s a small price to pay.
While a normal Egg McMuffin is actually only 290 calories and carries about 12 percent of your daily total fat, your best option when trying to stay a little leaner is the egg white version—which sits around 250 calories and 8 percent daily total fat.
Like others on this list, Egg McMuffin’s are high in protein and are actually a nice balance thanks to the mix of eggs and breads to hold you over during a two-or-three-hour flight.
We’ve all been to a Hudson News before—those stores in every airport that sell things like magazines, drinks and various snacks—so, when you’re in-between meals and unsure of what to get, do yourself a favor and get a bag of mixed nuts to snack on.
Low in saturated fat and high in protein and Omega-3—meaning they’re good for your heart—mixed nuts are something that you won’t feel bad about eating throughout the day while at the airport or on your flight.
They’re obviously easy to carry and, even better, taste great.