More than 42.5 million Americans are expected to travel at least 50 miles this Thanksgiving, meaning that many of the meals leading up to THE meal will take place on the road. Thankfully (no pun intended), convenience stores across the nation are starting to offer up healthier options, making chowing down on the go a much more nutritious affair. Here are a few “rules of the road” to help guide you down convenience store aisles:
1. Find the Fresh Case. Looking for the good stuff? Kwik Trip, a convenience store chain with more than 475 locations across Wisconsin, Minnesota and Iowa, encourages travelers to seek out freestanding coolers that house everything from whole and cut fruits, vegetables and dip, salads, hardboiled eggs, yogurts, low fat cheese and other goodies like pretzel and hummus cups. Some convenience stores, like the California-based Loop Neighborhood stores, offer a fresh salad bar daily.
2. Customize Your Meal. More and more convenience stores are giving customers the opportunity to build their own sandwiches or salads, and at Pennsylvania-based convenience store Sheetz, you can even create your own burrito bowl. Sticking with a lean protein like chicken or turkey and piling on the veggies is a good starting point to creating a healthier meal.
3. Wise Up To Whole Grains. For those looking for a quick snack to keep bellies satisfied throughout the drive, whole grains should do the trick. Some good bets include popcorn, granola or oatmeal, and if you can’t find what you’re looking for, try asking one of the store clerks and they should be able to help you out.
4. Water, Water Everywhere. Forgot to bring along water for the drive? Luckily, no matter where you stop along the way, H2O is pretty easy to find. If you’re traveling through Tennessee or Missouri and happen to stop by a U-Gas or Twice Daily, keep an eye out for the Drink Up logo on bottles. It’s part of PHA’s and First Lady Michelle Obama’s effort to encourage people to drink more water more often.