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Feel-good snacks you can find at the airport

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In a sea of airport fast-food joints and magazine kiosks, it can be a challenge to find energy-packed snacks powerful enough to sustain you on a long day of travel. Thoughts such as “I’m on holiday!” suddenly make chicken strips with a side of French fries for $24 seems like a good choice. But your body will thank you if you put down the breaded bird and reach for these five powerhouse snacks instead.

1. Yogurt
Available at most sandwich bars and snack kiosks, yogurt is a great source of protein and vitamin B12. It helps to keep up energy levels while waiting to board the plane and makes sure your nervous system is firing on all cylinders. To get the most health benefits from this calcium-rich snack, look for unsweetened varieties or at least ones sweetened with fruit juice or stevia.

2. Nuts
When it comes to selecting a nutty snack from the rack at the magazine shop, not all nuts are created equal—many are coated in high-glycemic index sucrose or fill you with 200 per cent of the daily-recommended sodium intake. Look for an unsalted, unsweetened mix of dry-roasted nuts that includes almonds, cashews and pistachios; these nuts have the fewest calories but are still rich in antioxidants and fibre.

3. Starbucks Smoothie
The Seattle-based mega coffee chain, which is in pretty much every major airport, offers more than sugar-saturated specialty drinks. If you know what to order, you can get yourself a healthy beverage before boarding. Request a Strawberry Smoothie but swap out the milk for organic soy, almond or coconut milk and ask them to add a shot of matcha green-tea powder for a quick hit of natural energy.

4. Hummus & Veggies
As tempting as it is to fill up on fluffy white bread and deli meats, say no to mayo-laden sandwiches and reach for a snack pack of hummus and crudités instead. There’s a lot of clean protein in chickpeas, and the fresh (or somewhat fresh) vegetables provide you with much-needed fibre.

5. Coconut Water
Seasoned fliers know if you want to cut down on inflight bloating, skip the carbonated drinks—even when they’re complimentary. Water is the way to go but if you’re feeling a little extra dehydrated from all that recycled cabin air, coconut water is also a great natural option. Now readily available at many airport kiosks, this sweet bevvie is full of electrolytes that help to replenish fluid reserves.

Air travel can be hard on your body, so do what you can to support your health by choosing snacks that give it what it needs to get you from A to B happy and well nourished.


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Originally posted November 2015