WHAT IS CAMPING, HIKING, FISHING, HUNTING OR SHOPPING WITHOUT TRAIL MIX?
Something I had almost daily as a kid in my lunch… I was always the one with the healthy snack mix of raisins and peanuts. My best friend in 1st grade also had what her mom called “trail mix” and it was marshmallows and chocolate chips. There was more than one occasion I wanted to trade moms with her. But now that I torture my own children with healthy food, I realize just how much my mom loved me! They don’t even resist anymore for fear they will be lectured on antioxidants, phytochemicals and Omega-3 fatty acids!
Trail mix – continuum is huge… trail mix is often unhealthy and full of sugar and processed foods. You can literally make yourself sick if you are eating high sugar/high fat mixes all day long as sometimes we don’t pay attention to serving portions when we have a bag of something in our pack. But it can be incredibly healthy…
You can live off the stuff for weeks if need be, main elements include protein, fat, complex carbohydrates with lots of essential nutrients & fiber. The key is what you put in the mix.
Rule of thumb with Trail Mix… at least 3 ingredients and no more than 6.
Super Healthy Trail Mix
Pick 6 ingredients or make some interesting combinations of the suggested ingredients.
- 1 cup raw almonds (VitE, magnesium, zinc, iron, fiber, calcium, monosaturated fat, anti-inflammatory, heart healthy antioxidants, protein)
- 1 cup raw sunflower seeds (VitE, B-vitamins, polyunsaturated fat, minerals, fiber, protein)
- 1 cup raw pumpkin seeds (the most nutritious seed, best source of magnesium, iron, tryptophan (mood booster), anti-inflammatory, prostate & bladder health, omega-3)
- 1 cup roasted soy nuts (phytochemicals shown to help prevent heart disease and cancer, protein, fiber and mostly unsaturated fat)
- 1 cup peanuts (not a nut but a legume, high protein, coenzyme Q10 (protects heart), high antioxidants like blueberries, monosat fat, high niacin (protects against dimentia) iron, VitE, calcium, higher resveratrol than grapes, tryptophan)
- 1 cup rolled oats (insoluble fiber, reduces toxic acid, fights cancer, phytochemicals, vitE, many other minerals, keeps blood sugars balanced)
- 1 cup unsweetened coconut (immune booster, quick energy, anti-bacterial, good for skin, thyroid function, lots of fiber, vitamins & minerals)
- 1 cup organic raisins (high fiber, potassium, magnesium, help to neutralize acidity in the blood, iron, good for your teeth, cancer fighter) WHY ORGANIC? There can be high pesticides used in grapes and when they are concentrated down during the drying process, those chemicals are concentrated in the raisins.
- 2 cups figs, chopped (high fiber, potassium (lowers blood pressure), manganese, one of the highest fruit sources of calcium, can lower risk of macular degeneration)
- 1-2 cups dark chocolate (from a plant – we can almost call it a vegetable – so many of the health benefits, flavonoids & antioxidants boost immune system, relax blood pressure, balance hormones, reduce chol., serotonin & endorphins (mood enhancers). Over 60% insures healthy antioxidant properties and fiber.
So that is it, just mix up and enjoy…
Other super healthy additions include
Dried carrots or other veggies – some companies do a great job with this
Unsweetened dried fruit or freeze dried fruit
Chopped bits of pure fruit leather – I make my own from golden plums and they pack a wonderful sour punch.
Remember, food in its most raw form carries the highest nutrients (usually, there are a few exceptions such as peanuts, spinach and pumpkin).
More processing = lower nutritional values.