My husband went out of town this week, and we knew he'd have to eat what was provided at company meals more often than not. Not much way to get around that.
Yet, he'd be in a motel room with a refrigerator. So we figured the best strategy was to provide a handful of key, nutrient-dense foods to make up for otherwise poor food options.
Our goal was not to replace the meals. Rather, to beef up his choices with nutrient-rich snacks and supplements. We didn't want to be militant about his eating while on the road. Frankly, it is near impossible to find real, natural food in most venues anyway. So that's not the battle we chose. We chose the battle we could win — supplementing with nutritious options. 🙂
In planning what I would send with him, two things were against me. First, I ran out of time to make a batch of jerky for a good source of pastured meat protein, fat-soluble vitamins, and healthy fats. Second, none of my fermenting vegetables (like sauerkraut) were done. Ferments provide probiotics to keep the gut healthy during times of stress or poor nutrition, as well as vitamins, minerals and enzymes.
The solution: cultured dairy. We happen to have an abundance of that, thanks to our family Jersey cow being in milk and also because I'm culturing like crazy for the Cultured Dairy and Basic Cheese eCourse. Cultured dairy provides all that I mentioned before: quality protein, healthy fats, essential fat-soluble vitamins (ADEK), probiotics, enzymes, and minerals. Plus, it tastes good!
So, come Sunday night, when he had to depart, I felt pretty good about what I was packing in his cooler. Besides the cultured dairy, I included some other nutrient-dense foods and other goodies to eat with the cultured dairy.
- 1 quart of raw milk kefir, plus fruit to mix up with it — as in this kefir parfait
- 1/2 gallon of raw milk
- 5-spice or apple-cinnamon baked oatmeal (chilled and cut up into bars and easy to put in a bowl with raw milk for instant, delicious, cold breakfast — kind of like a cookie bar and milk)
- 1/2 gallon of water kefir, a great fermented beverage to keep hydrated (I add these natural mineral drops to the finished kefir to supplement trace minerals)
- 2 cups of raw, homemade cottage cheese (to eat with fruit also)
- sliced raw, homemade cheddar cheese (if only I'd had time to make a batch of sourdough crackers)
- mixed crispy nuts (pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, and almonds)
- fermented cod liver oil / high vitamin butter oil blend (can't leave home without it)
For his general eating out strategy, we decided he should avoid fried foods because of rancid, highly-processed vegetable oils. Also that if he was in a restaurant to be sure and ask for real butter, and to press for it because some servers don't even know they're serving margarine in place of real butter. He loves cream and could drink it by the pint, and will go into a grocery store just for it, so I reminded him that Tillamook or Organic Valley cream are best because at least those cows are raised mostly on pasture.
And that's what we did. I talked to him this morning and he said he's enjoying the food I packed and he's going to eat all of it.
When you or your loved ones hit the road, what do you pack? Can you think of anything else I should have done? My husband will be away for a week next month, too, so I'll be doing this again…. sooner than I would like. 😉
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