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Eating Healthy While Flying: In-Flight Nutrition Tips

Air travel can derail healthy eating habits. Limited food options, irregular mealtimes, and restricted diets make maintaining nutrition challenging at 35,000 feet. However, with proper planning and smart choices, you can eat well and stay nourished while jet-setting across time zones. This article provides tips for healthy in-flight dining.

Pre-Flight Precautions

Avoid digestive issues or fluctuations in blood sugar during the flight by:

- Having a small protein-rich snack like yogurt before the flight

- Consuming slowly-digesting complex carbs instead of high glycemic index foods

- Staying hydrated - carry an empty water bottle through security to refill post-check-in

- Skipping large fatty meals before flying which may cause indigestion

Assemble a Flight Feast

Since airline food is often unhealthy, prepare your own nutritious inflight meals:

- Build whole grain wraps or sandwiches with lean meats, veggies and hummus

- Make a fruit and nut trail mix - combine dried fruits, unsalted nuts, seeds, and dark chocolate

- Pack Greek yogurt cups and carrot sticks with nut butter for dipping

- Bring herbal tea bags and hot water in a thermos instead of coffee or alcohol

Smart Snacking Strategies

Nibbling minimizes hunger pangs and sustains energy between meals:

- Choose complex carbs - go for oatmeal cookies, whole grain crackers or popcorn over candy or chips

- Stay hydrated with water - avoid sugary sodas and juices

- Pick produce - apples, grapes, bananas, baby carrots are portable options

- Include protein - jerky, roasted chickpeas, and cheese sticks prolong satiety

Inflight Dining Decisions

Making mindful entree and sides selections from the airline menu can ensure more balanced nutrition:

- Opt for grilled, baked or poached dishes instead of fried options

- Load up on veggie sides like salads and steamed broccoli

- Choose lean proteins - grilled chicken, tofu or seafood

- Request ethnic dishes like vegetable biriyani which offer whole grains and produce

- Pair meals with tomato juice or lemon water rather than alcoholic drinks


With planning and smart choices, you can stay nourished and satisfied despite limited dining choices in the air. Aim for whole foods over refined carbs, lean proteins, complex carbohydrates, and lots of hydration. Prioritize nutrition to keep your mind sharp and minimize jet lag throughout the journey.

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