I have seen many people who struggle to make healthy choices due to their line of work. For instance, taxi drivers, truck drivers or anyone who generally finds themselves on the road a lot and without the facilities to keep food out of the temperature danger zone. They struggle with options that will last through until lunch so mainly opt for takeaway meals – sometimes for all 3 meals of the day. This is expensive and damaging to your health.
Below are some healthy, simple and safe options that will hopefully provide some inspiration for lunches. Some may require a little more preparation than others but they can be prepared in bulk and used throughout the week.
1. Sandwich or wrap
This is one of the simplest and healthiest options that can be prepared the night before to grab in the morning. It’s best to pack salad ingredients in a separate container to the bread and assemble on the day. What you will need:
- 2 slices of multigrain bread
- 1 Medium sized multigrain roll
- 1 multigrain wrap bread
Protein/ protein substitute (optional):
- 1 tin of tuna or salmon in spring water or in olive oil, drained
Vegetables (you can choose any you like):
- Grated carrot
- Avocado – use instead of margarine or butter
2. Lentil salads
Using lentils as the protein component of a salad is another very simple and nutritious option, not to mention filling.
- Tinned lentils (e.g. red kidney beans, chick peas, 4 bean mix), drained
- 1 tin of tuna
- Baby spinach leaves
If you invest in a good insulated lunch bag and ice pack then you can mix this with brown rice and feta as well. However, this is not advised in extremely hot conditions or if you are going a prolonged period of time before consuming the meal.
3. Pasta salad
Cook some wholemeal pasta and add any vegetables you like to bulk it up! You can heat this up and store it in a thermos to keep warm or you can store it with an ice pack and eat cold. Some additions could include:
- Baby spinach leaves
- Tomato based sauce
Cook a batch of soup and heat it up prior to work. Pack it in a thermos and it should keep warm until lunch. Good options include minestrone, tomato, and pumpkin.
Fruit is always a great snack and you should aim to get 2 pieces per day. The following snacks can also be taken on the road.
- Vegetable sticks e.g. sliced capsicum, cucumber, celery –these can be paired with a light hummus or salsa.
- Pre-cooked vegetables – take steamed vegetables in a container and snack on them over the day, they don’t need to be re-heated, place them with a ice pack to keep them fresh.
- 30g of nuts – Any variety, preferably unsalted.
- 4 multigrain Vita-Weat crackers OR 2 corn thins OR 2 Ryvita biscuits with one of the following options:
- 1 tablespoon of peanut butter
- ¼ avocado and tomato (take in separate container and assemble when ready
- Light hommus and vegetables
- 2 cups of ‘Poppin’ popcorn, raw, microwaved
- Small tin of lentils e.g. Edgell’s 4 bean mix (drained and rinse at home)
- One wholegrain English muffin with peanut butter
- One tin of tuna
Contact us for results focused nutritional advice
This article was written by our dietitian Belinda Elwin who is a Dietitians Association of Australia member and Accredited Practising Dietitian and Nutritionist. If you have questions about healthy eating, make an appointment. We‘ll provide you with a simple and effective routine targeted to your concerns. Contact us today.