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With spring and summer on their way, you might be excited about your next outdoor adventure. However, there are some points to keep in mind before starting your hiking journey. One of them is bringing nutrient-rich food along with you. Though it’s vital to bring food, you need be careful about what you’re bringing with you. Nutrient-dense food is necessary to keep you energized while your body burns calories when hiking.
That said, you can consider the best nutrition practices we discuss in this article for your next hiking excursion. But before we move further, let’s discuss the importance of nutrition for hiking.
Though it may seem a bit redundant, proper nutrition is vital for any physical activity, including hiking. It doesn’t matter if you’re just a beginner or an extensive hiking experience. It’s crucial to choose the right food that helps you tackle any hiking trail.
The foods we eat act as fuel to keep our energy up. They provide us with sufficient strength and enhance our energy levels to stay energized.
Besides that, nutrient-rich foods give us the strength to recover quickly after an arduous hike. However, you must be extremely careful to decide which food to eat and avoid when trekking. That’s why getting aware of your dietary needs is a good idea before a hiking trip.
Let’s have a look at some tips you need to consider for your hiking excursion:
Having a plan is essential for a pain-free hiking adventure. You need to pay special attention to weather conditions, bringing sufficient fluids, etc. Some key factors you should consider for your outdoor activity include:
• Length and duration of the trip
• Which foods and drinks to bring
• When to stop for a drink and when to eat
• If it’s possible to bring a cooler
• Which food-related equipment and tools you might need
If you’re on a hiking trip, the last thing you’d want is to get dehydrated. Besides focusing on nutrition, drinking plenty of water is another factor you must consider when trekking. It doesn’t matter if you’re going on a short, one-hour hiking trip in the mountains; you’ll need a least one bottle of water.
In fact, drinking around one liter every two miles or so should keep you hydrated for the entire hike. Also, you must remember to not drink an entire water bottle at once. Try taking smaller, frequent sips even if you’re not thirsty. Drink water regularly on a trail to avoid thirst since it’s often a sign of dehydration.
It’s always better to bring extra food than you might need otherwise when it comes to hiking. However, do not bring so much that it overburdens you and weighs down your backpack. You can bring a lot of less food for a few hours short hiking journey. Mix trails, some dried fruits, and a protein bar will do great.
Now you know the adequate amount of food you need for a hike, it’s also essential to know the types of food that will help you thrive in your hiking excursion. Let’s have a look at some crucial hiking foods:
These snacks are portable, easy-to-carry options for backpackers. Nuts and seeds contain a high quantity of minerals, healthy fats, protein, fiber, and vitamins vital to help you stay fueled. Moreover, despite their small size, they calorically dense.
Depending on your hiking trail, you can burn thousands of calories per day. Hence, it’s crucial to choose calorie-dense foods. You can also mix in almonds, sunflower seeds, and cashews with dried fruits to enjoy a delicious snack.
Dried fruits are different from fresh fruits since they’re heat-stable and have long shelf lives. They contain several nutrients you can find in fresh fruit and provide you with healthy fiber, carbs, minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants.
For example, sun-dried raisins contain similar antioxidants and minerals you can find in fresh grapes. Another remarkable thing about dried fruits is that you can easily store them in a travel bag and mix them with nuts and seeds for a high-energy trail mix.
Depending on your hiking journey, you need to boost your protein intake. Like athletes, you also need to consider top-notch protein sources during the trip for speedy muscle recovery.
Protein bars are high-profile products suitable for both vegans and vegetarians. Besides that, they have long shelf lives, and you don’t need to refrigerate them. However, not all of them are equal. If you’re looking for the top protein bar, pick products with natural ingredients and no artificial colors or flavors.
As mentioned previously, fresh vegetables and fruits are highly perishable items. However, they can be handy if you’re going on a shorter hike. Bring celery and carrots along for a healthy snack.
Looking for an item that takes little space in your pack and is high in protein? Jerky is the perfect answer. You can find jerky in multiple types of meat, such as salmon, turkey, venison, and beef. You can also find various jerky flavors as well.
Quick and easy to cook, instant noodles are an incredible hiking meal for long hikes. Rice is another option you can take and spice them up with your favorite vegetables. These foods contain a high quantity of carbohydrates to help you stay energized on your hike.
As you can see, there are several things to keep in mind for hiking. First and foremost, you need to understand the importance of nutrition practices for hiking. Stay hydrated as much as you can and bring an adequate amount and suitable types of food along with you. You’ll surely enjoy your upcoming hiking trips more than ever if you remember the tips mentioned above.