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If you’re working in a high-stress position such as being a police officer, eating healthy at work can seem impossible. After all, it can feel difficult to find time to eat a meal, and many restaurants give discounted or even free food to officers. 

However, making an effort to eat healthy on and off duty can ensure that your energy levels are more stable, and you have the energy for foot pursuits if they’re necessary. Here are seven tips to help you eat healthier while you’re on duty.

  • Avoid the Junk

Junk food such as chips, candy bars, and fast food can be tempting because they’re easy to grab and go if you’re in a hurry. However, these foods are much worse for you in the long run – they provide empty calories that don’t give you any sustainable energy and encourage your body to store them as fat. 

  • Choose Whole Foods with Lots of Nutrients

Whole foods are the most nutritionally complete options out there – meat, vegetables, fruit, eggs, and nuts are ideal whenever you have access to them. If you’re forced to grab food at a gas station while working a double, opt for things such as beef jerky, almonds, sunflower seeds, or pre-packaged hard-boiled eggs to try and get as close to whole food as possible. 

  • Go for Grilled

If you have time to eat at a sit-down restaurant, go for grilled meat and vegetables, salads topped with meat, or omelets. These options are relatively healthy and available at most restaurants in some capacity.

  • Make Your Own Burrito

Make-your-own-burrito restaurants are a great way to get access to fresh ingredients that you can customize to your needs. Avoid carb-loading by opting for a burrito bowl rather than a wrap, and skip rice and beans.

  • Mod Your Fast Food

Fast food restaurants are some of the only businesses that are open 24/7, but you can still eat healthy while working nights. Some chains offer lettuce wrapped burgers and side salad options, helping you cut down on those pesky carbs. Of course, swap your fountain soda with water or black coffee.

  • Meal Prep

If you’re determined to pack your own lunches, meal prepping can help you have things on hand at a moment’s notice. There are a ton of slow cooker recipes that you can freeze after preparing to make convenient meals that you can then pack as leftovers for the next shift.

  • Get Portable, Healthy Snacks

Things such as nuts, beef jerky, carrots, canned tuna with cucumber, and hard-boiled eggs are great portable snack options for when you’re on the go.