I have always found traveling through airports, business lounges and on airplanes that it is hard to make good choices about food. You have to be disciplined in order to avoid junk food on your journey, but I am always looking for food that is low in fat and high in protein to help me stay in shape. And sadly, often these options are in short supply in airports as most airports today are full of junk food.
They know just how to get you. You are tired after a long day work, or you missed breakfast to get to the airport, or you’re just plain jet lagged and ready to make unhealthy decisions. The fatty carbohydrate foods are calling your name; they have energy written all over them. You indulge. You then feel bloated and guilty for making such bad choices – pizza, burgers, fried chicken and beer have airport food written all over them.
Business class lounges these days run on very tight on budgets, meaning you get crackers and some processed cheese in a packet, maybe some hummus dips but rarely fresh salads, fruits and protein. However there are still options. Trust me on this.
Here are a few tips:
Whatever time you are leaving in the morning make some eggs, as the protein will keep you full for a longer period of time. Many airport shops sell boiled eggs in a packet and that’s a great option too. Even Delta Airlines’ business class lounge has that to offer for breakfast
Load up on fresh fruit wherever you see it. If you have time go and have a sit down meal at a restaurant so you can have a protein and salad dinner. But if you can’t, keep an eye out for fresh fruits.
Try to eat before you get on the plane because airplane food normally is not what you’re looking for in terms of healthy choices. Many airlines have frozen trays for economy on long haul flights, or sandwiches with shelf lives longer than your passport.
Pack a few things in your bag. Two great choices are freeze dried fruits and edamame which can now be bought dried in packets. The edamame is full of protein and little to no fat.
Sushi boxes are also a great choice to take on board and most airports now have this choice.
Many airports do have great restaurants and this is improving all the time. Internationally, Narita is full of sushi bars and even the club lounges have great healthy options. London Heathrow has wonderful eateries in Terminal 5 and Itsu Sushi. Caviar restaurants at airports are expensive but they are the best choice you can make as they offer fresh salad and smoked salmon. Hong Kong has a nice caviar bar, while Singapore frankly has everything.
Domestically, LaGuardia in New York has a great food hall with fresh salad bars and lobster bars, sushi and prepared salads. Minneapolis has a Japanese restaurant and a great French bistro by gate G9.
So remember; protein, nothing deep fried, no cream, butter or cheese and stay low on the carb side. If you stick to this, you will never need to follow a diet again.
Daniel Green, the Model Cook is a Celebrity Chef known for his healthy approach to food and living well. With TV, books, magazines and live appearances, Daniel spends his time helping fans to cook better, feel better and live better. He’s also an avid traveler and a self-confessed Foodie.