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Who Says Convenience Store Snacks Can't Be Healthy?

Yes, if you resist temptation long enough, you can always find better-for-merienda options there
by Anne Mari Ronquillo | Sep 14, 2016
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A convenience store doesn't necessarily have to be a place where health goes to die. Amidst the sea of sugar and salt-laden snacks in attractive foil packaging, most convenience stores have a decent selection of healthier food options that would keep you from maxing out your HMO card. You just have to walk past the doughnut display, and keep yourself from pulling the seductive levers on the soft-serve ice cream and frozen carbonated drinks machines.

Check out these products on a shelf near you!

Fresh milk

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The daily grind can take a toll on your calcium reserves. It's unlikely that your nearby mart stocks fancy almond milk on their shelves, so it’s okay to reach for that pack of udder goodness. If you’re watching your weight, there’s always low-fat.

We know you are craving that highly Instagrammable cone of soft-serve. If you're looking for a cool treat that won't make your tummy bigger than it already is, just aim for a nice cup of fruit-flavored yogurt! It will also replenish your gut flora.

Sports drink
There's a Japanese sports drink that was derived from the intravenous solution they inject you with in hospitals. Apparently, its ingredients are better absorbed by the body than plain old water. In a climate like ours, it’s always wise to keep yourself hydrated.


Remember your glow foods

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Salad may be the the most unoriginal yet dreaded option whenever one thinks "healthy eating," and though the air-conditioned, 24/7 walls of convenience stores are no Sunday farmer's market, you have to applaud a number of them for giving it the good old college try. Family Mart also offers veggie sticks that come with dip for a more sosy feel.

It is, in fact, possible to find fruit in this dust-filled concrete jungle of Metro Manila. Fruit cups come in peaches and mandarin oranges are available in in 7-11 and Mini-Stop. Family Mart ups the ante by selling fresh fruit cups. Bananas, which have a lot to offer in the potassium and antioxidant departments, are also commonly sold in most convenience stores.

Drink local
If you simply want to get your drink on, ditch sodas and sweetened drinks. Most convenience stores stock up on locally made refreshments like Bayani Brew (but no drinking during office hours, please) and Locally Ph's pun-crazy (You've Dalandan It Again, anyone?) juice drinks. Not only will you save your body from a sugar crash, you’d also be supporting the local economy.

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A pack of unsalted nuts is chock full of fiber, unsaturated fat, and protein. They also tend to curb your appetite so you don't end up craving a large serving of cheese fries.

Sow your wild oats
Oatmeal, whether in instant or cookie variety, are for those people whose mouths just find more joy with an extra ounce of sugar. Oatmeal is not only quick and convenient, it is also a good source of soluble fiber which helps lower your cholesterol.

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