Everyone is different in the way that food affects them, what they can eat might be completely different than what someone else would/could eat.
That is perfectly fine, you just have to figure out what works for you and follow that.
I am a certified Health Coach, what I am saying here is just from personal experience, it isn't a prescription to a diet or a gospel for you to live by. It is up to you to experiment with your knowledge of your body. If you want to know more about my practice just contact me!
Now, there are two ways your body can become adapted when consuming food on a hike.
You can be Carb Adapted or Fat Adapted.
It is possible to train your body to be either of these, and it is safe to eat one or the other, it all depends on your lifestyle and what your physical activity is like.
Being carb adapted means you create most of your energy from carbohydrates, such as; fruits, vegetables, and beans/legumes.
Carbs produce energy a bit faster than fats do, though they do not last as long so you will need to bring twice as many carbs as you would if you go the fat adapted way.
To create the most efficient amount of energy it is best if you don't use grains such as Pastas, Breads, Oats, Rice, or Cereals as they tend to burn up faster than the veggies and beans, the fruit goes pretty quick as well, but they are preferred over the grains
Grains are "fast carbs" meaning you get energy from them quickly, but they burn faster than the other carbs so you will need to refill on them quicker than the rest.
If your body is more carb adapted try to bring lots of dehydrated dense vegetables like beetroot or sweet Potatoes.
Add them to a soup with a few other vegetables like mushrooms, zucchini, and carrots, add some spices and you have a delicious dinner!
Though you will want to bring some fats with you to maintain some more energy to stay healthy. You can dehydrate ground beef and add that into your soups, coconut oil is great in you coffee or straight out of the jar, and nuts are a quick and easy snack to pull out when you're feeling low.
Being fat adapted means you pull most of your energy from fats such as: Coconut oil, butter, nuts, avocado, meat, ect,.
Fats produce energy slowly throughout the day, lasting twice as long as carbs of the same amount.
If you think about it, when you eat meat you get full easily and you don't feel hungry for a 3-4 hours. It's like that when you consume any sort of healthy fat.
Notice I said Healthy Fats!
If you bring aone a jar of OMG! I Can't Believe That's Not Butter, you are just going to damage your digestive system and wish you had brought your good ol' coconut oil.
Healthy fats contain lots of Omega -3's, the healthy Omega, other fats such as vegetable oils, processed snack foods, and margarine contain Omega 6 which in an high amount (S.A.Diet) can cause health problems.
It is best to stick to the healthier fats:
- Peanut/Almond/Cashew Butter
- Coconut Oil - Ghee
- Meats -Most fish and red meat
Fats are great for when you are going on a long hike, you can eat some coconut oil and beef jerky in the morning and be good for 6-7 hours without needing to refill so quickly.
Though it is a good idea to bring along a few carbs to snack on.
You can use carbs for short, high intensity activity, such as a quick jaunt up a steep incline, or a short sprint, that way you don't burn up all the fats, and you don't feel like quitting halfway up the mountain.
You can read more about being fat and carb adapted here. Off The Grid Hiker is my family friend and hiking guide on my trip through Sweden. He has been hiking for well over twenty years and really knows what he's talking about!
What I Brought
I went on a week long hike in northern Sweden, and I decided to bring a mix of carbs and fats, but mostly fats. My body is more fat adapted due to the 15 years in dance and needing to keep up energy for 5-6 hour a day.
So here is what I brought with me!
10- Epic Bars- These are gluten free, paleo, grass-fed, grass-finished. My mom found these jerky bars a while ago and I absolutely love them, they are quick, healthy, and easy to pack into backpack.
Had these for breakfast with a few spoonfuls of coconut oil!
14- Paleovalley Beef Sticks - Gluten free, paleo, 100% Grass fed
I enjoyed having these for lunch as a lil pick me upper, they also went well with the coconut oil!
12 -Ancient Nutrition Bone Broths - I used these as a base flavor for my dinners, I added in dehydrated sweet potatoes, red beets, and carrots. It is important to note: The "Sweeter" Broths like the vanilla, peanut butter, etc, all taste like bone broth, I tried to use them as a base for my breakfast shakes and it was a dreaded experience, it was like drinking a vanilla chicken breast....not very tasty.
But the Tumeric Spice, and the Tumeric mixed with Spiced Herb were AMAZING! I highly recommend those whether you are hiking or cooking at home.
Home Dehydrated Vegetables - Sweet Potato, Beets, and Carrots. These added a little bit of energy as well as a great flavor to my meals. It is important to dehydrate them since water can add to the weight of your backpack.
When you add them into the water of your soup they soak up the water and rehydrate, releasing the full flavor of the vegetable into the soup!
Home Dehydrated Fruits - Cherries, Blueberries, Strawberries.
I used these in the first few days as my body got to be more fat adapted, and by the 3rd day I didn't feel like I needed carbs anymore.
Honey Lavender Tea - I absolutely love this tea, and it's always nice to have at then end of a long hike, right before bed! Tea bags weight next to nothing so why not bring some?
Dark chocolate - it's a great source of iron and it's a little treat for yourself when you are done with a day of hiking.
That's pretty much what I brought and it did me very well!
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