Article By: Dr. Evangelynn Honegger
Dr. Evangelynn Honegger is the Lead Clinic Physician at TRUEcare Integrative Medicine, an integrative naturopathic family medicine, acupuncture, and functional nutrition practice in Kirkland, WA.
The spring and summer travel seasons are here! With longer days and warmer weather, I cannot help but be reminded of some of my favorite grab and go, kid-friendly foods, snacks, and supplements in anticipation of sunny vacations ahead!
What do kids and parents both need when they are on the go all day? Healthy snacks, of course! While we love to prioritize seasonally fresh and whole food options, sometimes it’s better to be able to reach for shelf-stable, clean, and convenient treats that are ready to eat with zero prep.
Below you'll find some of my favorite go-to snacks to stay fueled and prevent "hangry" meltdowns, along with an explanation of why I recommend these products.
1) Prioritize whole foods first.
If you're traveling in the car with a cooler and/or can bring a small insulated lunch box, we always recommend snacking on whole foods such as:
- Boiled eggs
- Baby carrots
- Bell pepper slices
- Cucumber slices
- Apple slices
- Orange slices
- Real cheese (no Kraft Singles, for example)
2) Incorporate shelf-stable, clean snacks when necessary.
If snacking on whole foods isn't possible for whatever reason, these pre-packaged snacks are my favorite options to have on-hand:
- Lotus Pops – Who doesn’t love a road trippin', salty, crunchy snack? If you’re opting for a more healthful option and trying to decrease refined grains or corn, try these thoughtfully crafted, salt satisfying, high crunch factor snacks. With a popped kernel-vibe, they are great for watching a show on the road, sitting on a plane, or snacking up a storm!
- Brami Beans – These snacks are an amazing Italian-sourced product that pack a punch of protein and microbiome-loving, legume-sourced fiber. Remember the simple rule of prioritizing P & F (protein and fiber) as the "go-tos" for healthy and balanced blood sugar snacks for both kids and adults.
- Seaweed snacks – Seaweed snacks are a great way to add extra minerals for optimal thyroid function and to increase veggie consumption. Make sure to purchase the variety that is made from olive oil.
- Paleo Valley Sticks / Chomps Sticks – These sticks are easy to stash, stow, and enjoy! If you incorporate grass fed animal proteins into your diet, these are always a great protein-packed option and have become a staple snack in the rotation for many families. SnackMates have kid-sized portions, which are great!
- Kize Bars / Skout Organic Bars – These snack bars can work well as they are single ingredient focused. When choosing a bar, aim for a 2:1 carb to protein ratio to ensure balanced blood sugar and fullness factor.
- GoGo Squeez Fruit + Veggiez / Once Upon a Farm – These fruit and veggie pouches are a great kid-friendly option with way less mess, AND they contain a serving of vegetables for days when sit-down meals just aren’t possible! Grab a pouch to eat for yourself – we promise we won’t tell!
3) Don't forget Renzo's Vitamins to fill nutrient gaps on the go.
Many elements of travel or new schedules can put a strain on making healthy choices, which is the perfect time to boost and support your immune system. My top recommendations for a supplement travel kit include many of the amazing formulations by Renzo’s Vitamins:
- Picky Eater Multi – While it’s tempting to pick up gummies or fun character shaped children’s vitamins, it’s important to look at what they are actually made of. Thankfully, the Renzo’s Picky Eater Multi is chocked full of essential vitamins and nutrients for an extra boost when on the go!
- Yummy Tummy Probiotic – Probiotics can help boost beneficial gut bacteria and support the digestive system during changes in food and water. The stress of travel alone can often throw gut bacteria out of whack. Try a probiotic supplement at home first to see if you have the right one for your kiddo’s body.
- Invincible Vitamin C – Vitamin C is such an important immune system helper that can provide support during allergy season and new weather climates.
- The Immunity Builder Bundle – If we’re not fueling our bodies properly, our immune systems can take a hit, making us even more prone to getting sick. The Renzo's Immunity Builder Bundle checks a lot of boxes for all the families I work with when they are trying to optimize what to bring with them as mainstay support!
Whatever your travel plans are this spring and summer (no matter if you’re traveling across the country or to a nearby park), make sure to prioritize time spent planning and packing your snacks beforehand because it always ends up being worth the time and sanity saved... Plus, it will help you stay well-fueled when snack time strikes.
Renzo's Vitamins provides general recommendations, not to be construed as medical advice.