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Snack attack on the road means unhealthy food choices

Posted on Nov 13, 2013 by Maggie LaBarbera

I had been traveling last week and had to stop at a gas station and so I ran into the associated convenient store.  

I looked around and all I could see was aisles of:

  • candy
  • chips
  • cookies
  • pies
  • box of donuts
  • gum

There was one small little section to the left of the counter.  Maybe 2 feet of counter space that had a basket of fresh fruit.  

and in the hot section:

  • hot dogs
  • nachos
  • polish sausage
  • coffee
  • soda
  • assortment of nuts
  • beef jerky
  • bottled water
  • sodas
  • energy drinks
  • sugary flavored drinks

I grabbed an orange and a bag of peanuts with bottled water.  If you don't plan your own snacks, it will be difficult to find healthy foods in convenience stores.  It says a great deal about the foods that Americans want for their snacks.  This makes it hard to teach kids to eat healthy when you are bombarded with sugary, salty and fatty snacks.

So moms and dads and other kids supervisors, if you are planning a road trip, plan and pack your own snacks.

Note to self:  pack your own snack bag!

Did you know that convenience stores are an $11 billion industry and the second largest retail for foods.  Here are some facts*:

  • More than half of today’s consumers (52 percent) pick up snacks from prepared-food sections of convenience stores or mini-marts, compared to 37 percent in 2010.
  • Almost one in four consumers (22 percent) occasionally has breakfast from a c-store during the week, compared to only 12 percent three years ago. Furthermore, 13 percent purchase breakfast from c-stores on the weekends versus 7 percent previously.
  • While c-stores score well with consumers in terms of convenience, portability, and speed of food preparation and service, their Achilles heel seems to be the healthfulness of the food, which gets satisfactory marks from just 28 percent of those surveyed.
  • During the week, just one in five consumers surveyed indicated that they purchase lunch from retail foodservice locations such as grocery stores (20 percent) and convenience stores (17 percent), while 56 percent purchase lunch from a fast-food restaurant.

Snack Tips

Healthy Snack Foods For Children Organized By Food Groups





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