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Five Ways To Eat More Produce During Outdoor Adventures

When you're out on the trail for long periods of time, it can be difficult to eat enough produce to keep your body well-nourished. When you spend so much of your time being active outside, you probably end up packing most of your food to come with you, and fruits and vegetables don't always travel well. Here are five tips for keeping up your fruit and vegetable intake during your next adventure.

1. Utilize Supplements

Sometimes you just need a little help to keep up with your body's nutritional needs, especially when you don't have access to a refrigerator and are carrying the food you need with you. There are plenty of supplements that are intended to give you an extra boost of fruits and vegetables, such as red superfood powder. While these can't totally replace eating fresh produce, they will give you an extra dose of the beneficial vitamins and nutrients that come in those foods, which is especially helpful when you are burning extra energy during your hikes, rides, and climbs and it's difficult to find fresh fruits and vegetables.

2. Dry Your Produce

Dehydrated fruits and vegetables are lighter to carry and last longer than fresh ones, making them the perfect snack for outdoor adventurers. While you can buy prepackaged versions of these foods, many of them come with added sugar, which isn't what your body needs. Instead, dehydrate them yourself, either as individual fruits and vegetables or as fruit leather. Be adventurous with which foods you dry, as you might be surprised how well some of them turn out. When you're on your hike or trip, you can then eat your dehydrated fruits and veggies by themselves, add them to your trail mix, or stir them into your other dishes while you're cooking them. This can make options like kale, onions and peppers great to dehydrate.

3. Eat Portable Produce

One of the biggest problems with bringing produce on your adventures is that it doesn't always keep long. There are some fruits and vegetables that can last long enough for you to bring them with you, however. Sturdy fruit like apples and oranges will last for a long time, and tough vegetables like carrots and snap peas only need a damp paper towel to keep them fresh for a few days. You can even bring items that will only last one or two days and just eat those early on.

4. Focus on Fruits and Veggies When You Are Home

Whenever you're home or taking a break from your adventure with a meal in a restaurant, resist the temptation to order only meat and carb-based dishes and instead use the opportunity to consume fresh produce. You should definitely be sure you get enough protein and carbs as well, but order a salad to go with them. By taking advantage of every opportunity to eat fresh fruits and veggies, you'll help your body get the nutrition it needs. You'll also help keep yourself from getting into the habit of only ordering junk food during these meals.

5. Find Creative Options

While it's important to eat whole fruits and vegetables, you can also up your intake of these foods by using more creative methods. Individually wrapped containers of applesauce and other blended fruit combinations, for example, can be a great way to rehydrate yourself and get the produce you need. You can also incorporate veggies such as zucchini into baked goods and homemade granola bars to sneak some extra fiber and vitamins into your snacks. If you're going to be out and about for a shorter amount of time and can bring a cooler, making smoothies or homemade fruit popsicles can also be a great way to get some extra produce into your diet.

Outdoor adventures require your body to exert high amounts of energy, which means it needs even more nutrition than usual, but it can also be difficult to find ways to consume enough vitamin-rich produce. With a little creativity, though, you can still get enough of the fruits and vegetables your body needs.

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