By: Mary Catherine Holcomb

As I write this, I’m looking right into the face of chocolate covered almonds and dried sugar-laden fruit, never mind the beautiful baked goods, so tiny yet so high in calories! If you haven’t already guessed, I’m sitting in a coffee shop. I won’t lie, all those goodies look good, but somehow I feel a sense of accomplishment as I take a bite of my crisp apple.

It can be hard to make the right nutrition choices, let’s face it, temptation is everywhere. We all need a special treat every now and again, however, it’s important to limit the special treats so you can reach your goals.

Here are my top five tips to make better nutrition choices on the go!

  1. Pack your food! Bring your fruit and vegetables along with you. Slice up apples with a dash of cinnamon or pack a whole grain tortilla rolled up with your favorite veggies and nitrate free deli slices. It may take a few extra minutes in the morning or before you go to bed, but it’ll make the difference in helping you reach your goals!
  2. Drink water! Yes, you have heard it several times but are you actually doing it? If it’s hard for you to remember to drink water, set a timer on your phone for every hour to drink one glass of water. You may think, “Darn, I’ll have to go to the bathroom too much.” Well, we can call it ‘Bathroom Cardio’. You need to get up and move regardless, so let’s knock out two birds with one stone here. Plus, sometimes thirst is confused for hunger, so drink up!
  3. Stay away from the packaged foods! Packaged foods are packed (pun intended) with additives, preservatives, added sugar, calories, and chemicals. They provide your body with little or no nutrients. Refer back to tip number 1! Plan ahead and pack healthy snacks!
  4. Eat before you’re hungry! This may sound contradicting, but hear me out. Have you realized before that when you’re hungry, you reach for the sugar-filled items and bad foods? That’s because your blood sugar levels are crashing, and you need that intstant gratification. If you eat something every two to three hours, you won’t get that level candy bar-grabbing hunger.
  5. Last, but certainly not least, never grocery shop when you’re hungry! It’s hard enough to pass up all the temptations in the shiny packages when you aren’t hungry. Don’t set yourself up for failure by going in hungry. Eat your favorite healthy meal or go for a workout or walk before hitting the grocery store.