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Caution – Oversized Driver on Board

- June 15, 2017 by Leslie Stoll, CSP ARM (View all posts by Leslie)

True or False: People who drive for their jobs cannot eat healthy because they are on the road all day long.   

Answer: FALSE!

There are days when I spend more time in my driver’s seat than in front of a customer or in my office. Does this give me a legitimate excuse to eat unhealthy fast food all day long? No!

My fellow road warriors and I no longer have an excuse to make unhealthy food choices. Convenience stores now stock fresh fruits and vegetables. Many fast food restaurants now list their calorie counts on the menu. Grocery stores have fresh food counters and salad bars. With a little planning and awareness of what your daily caloric intake should be, you can easily start making better food choices.

First, you need to determine how many calories you need in a day (this will vary from person to person). The United States Department of Agriculture has developed a chart with general guidelines. Since I’m an active person in my 40′s I should take in about 2,200 calories per day. How I decide to fill my calorie bank is up to me.

Let’s think about this, if I eat unhealthy fast food for breakfast (a breakfast sandwich has 480 calories) and lunch (a quarter pound cheeseburger with fries has 900 calories), I would have consumed 1380 calories BEFORE 2pm (assuming I didn’t snack and drink a sugary beverage as well). To stay within my 2200 calorie diet that doesn’t leave me many calories left for the next 8 hours of the day.  And If you are like me, you aren’t going to be able to make it until bedtime without dinner.

Making healthy choices is also getting easier due to food labeling regulations.  A little education on how to read a food label is important.  The US department of Health and Human Services has an excellent resource for educating your employees on this. The key that I always check now is the number of portions on the label.  My green tea has 70 calories per serving, but the label also says that one can holds three servings. Multiply 70 calories x 3 servings for a total of 210 calories – just from my green tea!

Eating healthy has many benefits including having more energy and less health issues.  Packing a lunch at home may be the easiest way to stay healthy on the road.  If I’m hungry, I will not allow myself to stop for a snack if I still have something left in my lunch box, even if my choice is a carrot – I’m going to eat it.

 

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