Truckstop restaurants are often blamed for the large numbers of truck drivers that are overweight or obese, but is this an accurate statement? Well, not exactly. Eateries located at truckstops whether they are called restaurants, cafeterias, dining rooms or any other name serve truck drivers and others nationwide. While it may be true that the majority of these establishments serve primarily fat laden foods such as greasy burgers, fried meats, sugary foods, fries, etc., it is basically a matter of supply and demand. The majority of truck drivers choose these types of foods.

Many drivers are so tired and hungry when they stop to eat that all they want to do is to eat something that will fill them up. They often choose the foods they are most familiar with and enjoy but which may be detrimental to their health. Many drivers also tend to overeat which becomes a self- perpetuating habit. This habit makes it impossible for drivers to regulate their eating habits. Furthermore, the foods they often select are those which contribute to weight gain. Excess weight further increases their chances of developing health problems.

If truck drivers demanded healthier food the vast majority of restaurants would include healthy foods as part of their menus. These establishments are for profit businesses which means they must make a profit to stay in business. What good does it do for restaurants to offer healthy food if no one will buy it? Drivers that want healthy foods should voice their concerns to management or other appropriate staff person.

Many of these establishments have listened to truck drivers concerns and now offer healthier foods. They have hired dietitians to create healthier versions of popular foods and many drivers are taking advantage of and enjoying these foods. Currently, an estimated 10% to 15% of truckers select the healthy food options that restaurants offer. If more restaurants could be convinced that there is a need and a market for healthier food options more would offer them.

We all vote with our dollars so if more drivers requested healthy food and bought it when offered more restaurants will offer it and increase the selections offered. Like any other business restaurants seek to provide products and services that their customers want. If you want more healthy foods make your desires known to the various eateries that you regularly frequent and you might see them offered on the menu.

Drivers should primarily focus on consistently eating healthy foods. Eating healthy on the road may be somewhat of a challenge but it is not impossible. Avoid eating junk foods such as potato chips, candy bars, etc. Keeping your own supply of healthy snacks such as raw nuts and dried fruits in the truck can help you avoid buying unhealthy snacks at truckstops. Also, you could keep a small cooler in the truck for fresh foods. You could also top fresh salads with olive oil or balsamic vinegar instead of rich salad dressings. Taking the time and making the effort to eat healthy can help you to lead a healthier and more productive life both now and in the future.

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