Stay Healthy on the Road: 3 Snack Tips for Long Distance Driving

By Marina Aagaard, MFT

Going for a long drive by car? For business or pleasure, job or holiday? Then take care. Not only can driving, sitting for hours on end, (and the traffic) be harmful to your health. If you enjoy snacking in the car, this could lead to unwanted effects.

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Apart from gaining weight, if you drive often, too much sugar too fast results in low blood sugar shortly after and this can lead to:

  • Fatique
  • Lack of concentration
  • Mood swings

The first two very dangerous, when driving; should this happen, stop immediately and have a rest, a 5-10 minute power nap . The last could lead to anti-social quarreling, if you are on a drive together with others, family or friends, in the car …

For many people driving equals snacking as a nice passtime on the road. But it is all about habits and actually you do not need snacks for your drive.

Top snack tips for extended driving

  1. Put something nice without calories into your head instead:
    Listen to music or an audiobook. Play a word or numbers game. Talk/stories.
  2. Instead of chewing drink a water-based non-sugary drink: Water with added taste. Herbal teas with fruit flavour, liquorice- og chocolate tea a.o. It tastes delicious and satisfies your craving for sugar. Drink it hot or cold.
  3. Do you need to chew (have nutrients)? Make your own tasty whole-grain sanwiches filled with something you like (protein, e.g. eggs, meat, almonds or peanuts); should taste nice, satisfy you, and keep you full for a long(er) time.

Special tip for drivers

A special and important long-drive tip. A tip which may prevent you from eating too much or getting too tired. A tip which may help prevent blood cluts (which is a risk factor, especially for adults and the elderly, when you sit for too long).

Have a rest area rest every or every other hour. Get out and move about a bit..
Hop, jog, twist, shake your body. Or if you have time, do a short (7 minute?) workout.

Have a nice drive.

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