Sport & Summer Day Trip Bag Essentials

July 13, 2016

So, would you go golfing without your clubs? Would you go on a date without brushing your teeth? Of course not. Well, the same thing should apply to going out on the course and having handy and healthy snacks to fuel your playing time. Good nutrition is important to performing your best and providing the body nourishment.  I find this time of year high-schoolers are off to football, tennis, soccer or other camps under the summer sun. Keeping kids fueled and energized is important. Also, think about other times this summer you need snacks handy – the amusement park, a hike, a day out on the boat fishing, a day at the waterpark, or just something to put in your workout bag before and/or after a hard workout.   Here is a list of sport bag favorites to keep with you: • Easy to pack fruits (Don’t select fruits in which you have to peel and spend time on eating): apples, banana, pear, plums, nectarines, blueberries (in a baggie), peach • Easy to pack veggies: carrot sticks or baby carrots, celery sticks, sliced cucumber, sliced bell pepper, snap peas, snow peas • Dried edamame/soy nuts • Lean beef jerky • Lean turkey jerky • Salmon jerky • Mixed nuts • Pistachios • Individual packaged nut butters • Peanut butter crackers • Kale chips • Hummus (to dip w/ veggies)* • String cheese • Wasa crackers • Popcorn (air-popped) • ½ turkey/roast beef wrap or veggie wrap in whole wheat tortilla* • Greek yogurt* • Dried fruit (figs, apricots, kiwi, etc.) • Sports drinks • Bottled water • Dried whole-grain cereal • Cereal bars • Energy bars (select ones that will not melt/added chocolate bits) • Pre-made nut butter and banana sandwich on whole grain bread • Lettuce wraps with lean turkey and hummus* • Egg whites* • Whole grain pretzels • Pre-made pita stuffed w shredded carrots, sprouts, peppers, hummus, avocado   Water is of course most important! Take a refillable bottle and refill at water fountains, sinks, or on the field use the giant water coolers. Hydration under the summer sun is vital to stay your healthiest.   Grains & Labels When selecting healthy carbohydrate-rich snacks like cereals, breads, pastas, pretzels, and such, aim for specific ingredients on the ingredient list to ensure they are heart healthy and fiber-containing whole-grain products. Listed are words that you WANT to see on an ingredient list: brown rice, buckwheat, bulgur, millet, oatmeal, quinoa, rolled oats, whole-grain barley, whole-grain corn, whole-grain sorghum, whole-grain triticale, whole oats, whole rye, whole wheat, wild rice Foods labeled with the words "multi-grain," "stone-ground," "cracked wheat," "seven-grain," or "bran" are usually not whole-grain products.   Mush Factor Also, keep in mind the mush factor. Foods like raspberries, strawberries are going to get mushy if weight is thrown onto the package. Limit foods that will melt such as chocolate candies. If you want something sweet, make your own trail mix with dried fruit, nuts, and coconut flakes.   Energy bars vary Many energy bars are similar nutrient-wise to that of a candy bar. To ensure you are selecting a quality bar, look for at least 3-5 grams of fiber per serving, limited saturated fat (less than 10%), whole grains listed as a main ingredient, and void astronomical amounts of sugar, protein and calories. Keep bars under 28g protein and 500 calories. Read the food label’s ingredient list. Look for terms that indicate added sugars (such as sucrose, high-fructose corn syrup, honey, malt syrup, maple syrup, molasses, or raw sugar) that add extra calories. Choose foods with fewer added sugars.   *These are items that must include a cold-pack or cooler. If they are subjected to warmer temperatures, you are susceptible to food-borne illness. Keep it cold!