With the summer months around the corner, you may already be in full swing planning your summer adventures. I used to think that pre-packaging snacks and meals for the long car ride was my only way to avoid copious amounts of fast food. But with most gas stations and convenience stores stocking far more healthy options these days, you can pull off a healthy snack when you are on the road.

With a bit of knowledge and foresight, it’s relatively easy to find decent snacks at the gas station during a fill-up.

With a little more effort, it’s even possible to pull off a healthy, albeit “snacky,” meal. In order to feel full and satisfied for more than a few minutes, look for foods that have a mixture of protein, fiber, and healthy fat. Then, when searching for a suitable protein, look for things like hard-boiled eggs, greek yogurt, jerky, and assorted nuts or peanut butter.

snack bags of nuts

Fiber-rich foods that should be easy to find include fresh, whole pieces of fruit and pre-sliced and pre-packaged vegetables. Whole-grain crackers, popcorn, and oat or nut-based granola bars are also great options.

To round it out with a healthy fat, you can grab an avocado or even individual packets of guacamole. If you haven’t grabbed nuts yet, this is also a great reason to. Nuts have a lot of healthy fats that can keep you feeling full for longer.

When you’re walking the aisles looking for a beverage, stick to a tall bottle of water some unsweetened tea if you’re craving something other than water. Staying well hydrated contributes to alertness while driving and also proper digestion.

If you are purchasing something pre-packaged, take a glance at the food label and ingredients list to make sure you aren’t getting more than you bargained for. Even foods that look healthy may not always be what they seem. That fancy fruit smoothie likely will be loaded with added sugar — it may taste great going down but will ultimately leave you reeling from that familiar sugar crash.

If you struggle with road trip-induced bloating, it can be wise to note that certain foods—though they are healthy—can be a culprit for excess air in the stomach. Watch out for legumes, some nuts, apples, and carbonated drinks.

I always steer clear of (but are not limited to) sugary beverages, doughnuts, hot bar items, and candy. On the note of candy, though, I do like to grab a dark chocolate bar to nibble on when I want a little something sweet.

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