Food Basics


Most outdoor adventures require a great deal of energy, which in turn you need to increase your daily food intake to approximately 4,000 calories. The energy source breakdown should be roughly 50% carbohydrates, 25% proteins and 25% fats.

In winter / cold conditions, it should be 20% carbohydrates, 25% proteins and 45% fats. Why ? To keep your body warm in the cold, you will need a vast energy source. Fats will generally take much longer to be digested, and hence will produce more and lasting energy for you.

Carbohydrates (sugars & starch) are provided by foods such as bread, pasta, rice, fruits and vegetables. These are easily digested by your body and need to be frequently replenished if energy is continuously being expended.

Click for larger image      Pasta, Rice or
Instant Noodles
are the typical
we bring to the backcountry.

Try using different shapes of pasta to encourage appetite.

You may consider to add soup mixes into your pasta.

Also try using some of those pre-packaged oriental sauce mixes, or curry paste with rice. They are really good.
     Click for larger image

Proteins are provided by foods such as meat, fish, nuts (especially almonds), whole grains, soy beans, egg, cheese and milk. Proteins are more difficult to digest than carbohydrates. However they release more energy slowly and provide the amino acids for tissue building.

Fats are provided by foods such as oil, margarine, bacon, cheese and nuts. Fats are the most concentrated form of energy. They are as difficult to digest as proteins, so not too much fat should be eaten at any one time.

Canned meats are the most common sources of proteins and fats in backcountry cooking.

I found these new tin-foil packaged chicken and tina in grocery store last year, which greatly reduces the weight.
     Click for larger image

Minerals / Vitamins: Generally, if you make use of whole grains, cereals, dried fruits, nuts and seeds, your body will be adequately supplied with most of the necessary minerals and vitamins. The only major deficiency frequently found in camping foods is Vitamin C. This can be remedied by bringing fruit drink crystals with added Vitamin C in it.

Fibres fundamentally do not provide any energy for you. They help you clean up your digestive system so that you can continue to take in more food. Lack of fibres in your trail food may cause constipation. A person will feel less energetic and lose his apetite, and therefore be unable to digest other foods to give them the energy. Instant oatmeal or cream of wheat are the best sources for fibres while you are on trail.

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    >>  Dinner ...
    >>  Dessert ...
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