We (Sydney and Britt) love to hike! Here are some of our top tips for nutrition and hydration while hiking!
Plan Ahead! Make sure you consider the length of your hiking trip and what the weather will be like. Don’t forget to think about how much you can comfortably carry and what utensils you may need for food storage and eating.
Hiking Fuel & Food Safety: You can pack perishable foods (i.e. sandwiches, cheese, yogurt etc.) just be sure you have a cold source (such as an ice pack) to keep foods properly chilled to below 40°F. Make sure you pack foods that contain carbohydrates as this is the body’s main energy source during physical activity.
The more you stash in a backpack, the harder it is to hike, so opt mainly for non-perishable foods that are relatively lightweight and nutrient dense, such as:
Nuts, seeds, nut-based bars or nut butter packs (we love @justins)
Fresh, whole fruit that doesn’t require refrigeration such as apples, bananas and oranges
Dried or freeze-dried fruits and veggies
Granola or granola bars
Ready-made tuna salad pouches
Drink Up! Smart Hydration: Water is the preferred fluid source during physical activity. Ensure you are adequately hydrated before starting your hike in order to reduce the volume of fluids you will have to carry. Then, a good rule of thumb is to plan for about 2 cups of fluid for every 1-2 hours of hiking (dependant on environmental conditions, intensity etc.). Make sure you can bring or access clean drinking water during your hike. If the weather is very warm and you are sweating quite a bit, you may want to consider packing some oral rehydration solution powder, such as Pedialyte, that can help to replenish electrolytes lost during sweating.
Source: Eat Right: Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics