Truck Drivers: 5 Ways to Eat Healthier on the Road

  • Truck Drivers: 5 Ways to Eat Healthier on the Road

    Truck Drivers: 5 Ways to Eat Healthier on the Road

    One of the biggest challenges of being a commercial truck driver is eating healthy. It can be very difficult to stick with a reasonable diet when you are out on the road. Pre-packaged snacks are convenient to munch on while you drive. Sugary, caffeinated drinks can give you a boost of energy, but it only lasts so long and all that sugar certainly isn’t good for your health. And of course, fast food is a staple in the roadside diet of many truckers. We don’t really have to tell you how unhealthy it is to eat that stuff every day.

    Yet, many truckers rely on unhealthy snacks and meals because they are much more convenient and affordable. As a truck driver, you are usually on your own to figure out when, what and where to eat. If you want to eat a healthier diet, you need to make smarter choices. Here are a few healthy eating tips for today’s truckers to consider.

    1. Pack Your Own Food

    Depending on the length of your trip and the set up of your rig, packing your own healthy meals and snacks is one good way to eat better. Bring along some fresh fruits, veggies and snacks that aren’t as high in sugar or sodium content. Pre-make some meals that you can eat along the way. Many long-haul truckers will install power inverters in their trucks to allow for mini fridges, microwaves and hot plates. This way you can store and cook your pre-packed meals without having to rely on fast food joints for all your stops.

    2. Consider What You Eat

    Even if you are stopping at fast food places, restaurants and convenience stores for your meals, you can make healthier choices. Prioritize fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy and items that are high in protein but lower in fat. Most fast food restaurants and diners will have at least somewhat healthier options available. It may take some discipline and research, but you can find ways to eat meals with less sugar, salt, oil and trans fats. 

    3. Stay Hydrated the Right Way

    A major problem we see with commercial truck drivers is the propensity to rely on unhealthy drinks high in sugar and/or caffeine. You should always aim to drink as much water as you can to stay properly hydrated. Be very careful about what you drink. Don’t rely on sugary sodas or energy drinks to stay awake. It can be easy to become dependent on these drinks and they are not really good for you in any way. 

    4. Plan Ahead

    As you plan out your route and stops, think about your meals and snacks. This planning may include packing your own food as mentioned above, or at least knowing where healthy meal options might be along your route. Mindlessly snacking is a tough habit to break. Having everything planned out—including what you intend to eat—is a smart approach that can help you stick to a healthier diet.

    5. Don’t Forget to Exercise

    Beyond just unhealthy eating habits, truck drivers do a lot of sitting as they drive from one destination to another. This can be rough on the body in a lot of ways. Food doesn’t digest as well and you aren’t burning a ton of calories during long stretches behind the wheel. This makes unhealthy food even worse for you. Taking opportunities to stretch and exercise whenever you can will help keep your body in better shape. Combine some exercise with a healthier diet and you will live a longer, happier life with a successful career as a commercial truck driver.

    For more truck driving tips and resources, follow the America Truck Driving School Blog. Check out our website to learn more about driver training programs and courses to help you get the most out of your trucking career.

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