backpacking nutrition

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Backpacking Nutrition David R. Andersen Wauhawk District Roundtable Commissioner

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Backpacking Nutrition. David R. Andersen Wauhawk District Roundtable Commissioner. Overview Fat Protein Water Vitamins Minerals. Environmental Extremes Saving Fuel, Time, and Money Resources. Outline. Overview. How many calories do I need? - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Page 1: Backpacking Nutrition

Backpacking Nutrition

David R. AndersenWauhawk District

Roundtable Commissioner

Page 2: Backpacking Nutrition

OutlineOverviewFatProteinWaterVitaminsMinerals

Environmental ExtremesSaving Fuel, Time, and MoneyResources

Page 3: Backpacking Nutrition

OverviewHow many calories do I need?

Load < 15% of body weight, gentle terrain needs not significantly different from normal – 2500 to 3500 calories for active female, 3000-4000 calories for active maleLoad 25-35% of body weight, difficult terrain requires 500-1000 extra calories per day

Page 4: Backpacking Nutrition

Overview - continuedHow many pounds of food should I take?

Rules of thumbEasy/Moderate Hike – 1.5-2 lbs dehydrated food per day. 30-40% fat contentDifficult conditions – 2-2.5 lbs dehydrated food per day. 30-40% fat contentFor a long duration hike (more than 3 days) boost fat to 35-40% by selecting high fat foods

Page 5: Backpacking Nutrition

Overview - continuedFat vs. Carbohydrate?

These two are the preferred fuels for muscle. Ratio determined by energy demands

ProteinEating excess protein stresses kidneys and is difficult to digest. Only 5-10% of diet should be protein.

Page 6: Backpacking Nutrition

FatRecommended diet for long-distance hikers 50-35-15. 50% carbohydrate, 35%fat, 15% protein.Starvation robs you twice – less energy for the day’s work, plus your muscles are digested for fuel.Maintaining or losing weight means that the fat you eat will not end up on your artery walls.

Page 7: Backpacking Nutrition

Protein4 servings per day of protein-rich foods are sufficient.No need to supplement protein or take amino acids.Excess protein is just digested as a carbohydrate with extra water required to remove nitrogen waste.

Page 8: Backpacking Nutrition

Water and ElectrolytesDrink a minimum of 3 quarts of water per day – more in hot climates.No yellow snow! Clear to amber urine, not yellow.Dehydration can lead to heat cramps, heat exhaustion, heat stroke, and hypothermia.

Page 9: Backpacking Nutrition

Water and Electrolytes – cont.

Will I get enough salt? – YES! If you are eating sufficient food, you do not need to worry about salt intake.However, if you drink coffee/caffeinated beverages, the diuretic affect of the caffeine may induce electrolyte depletion. Water and Juice are best!

Page 10: Backpacking Nutrition

VitaminsVitamin C – water soluble antioxidant. Spiced cider or tablets – dried food loses its Vitamin C content rapidly.Vitamin E – fat soluble antioxidant. Seeds/nuts, peanut butter, oil or margerine and whole grains.Omega-3 fatty acids ALA, EPA, and DHA – fish oils and plant oils. Good for what ails you!

Page 11: Backpacking Nutrition

MineralsMore is NOT! better – stick to the RDA.Calcium – add powdered skim milk at every opportunity on the trail. Dried/fresh cheese and sardines also help. But if you normally take a supplement, continue to do so on the trail.Iron – unaffected by food dehydration so it is still present in all of the foods you normally find it in.

Page 12: Backpacking Nutrition

Environmental ExtremesHeat, cold, elevation, moisture

Page 13: Backpacking Nutrition

Extreme ColdTake 4X more fuel than you would for summer hiking.Avoid a high-protein diet. Eat frequent high-carbohydrate snacks.Pack no-fuss meals: instant hot soups or cereals, hot drinks.Prep work should be done at home.Add 250-500 calories per day.

Page 14: Backpacking Nutrition

Extreme HeatTwice as much water as usual (6 quarts/day).Salty snacks/foods are encouraged.Avoid coffee and high sugar drinks.

Page 15: Backpacking Nutrition

Extreme MoistureKeep smiling – mildew and all!Pack a special meal or treat just in casePrepare labor-intensive meals, preferably hot and spicy!Line stuff sacks with plastic bags before you set out.

Page 16: Backpacking Nutrition

Extreme Elevation (> 10K ft)

Appetite is suppressed at these elevations so avoid high-fat foods (harder to digest).Eat at least 55% carbohydrate and 15% protein to avoid muscle loss.4 quarts of water/day to avoid dehydration.Get adequate Vitamin E.

Page 17: Backpacking Nutrition

Saving FuelRehydrate on the trail – zip-lock bag in a tupperware bowl or peanut butter jar.Don’t simmer – bring water to a boil, add food, cover tightly, and turn off the stove. Let pot sit for recommended time. Contents will simmer.Choose the right cook kit – shallow broad pans and windscreens. Paint the bottom with flat black stove paint.Use no-cook or instant foods.

Page 18: Backpacking Nutrition

Saving MoneyDehydrate foods when they are in season.Make your own fruit leather. I’ve got the recipe if you want it.Ready-made or dry it yourself?

Page 19: Backpacking Nutrition

Saving TimeCombine ingredients at home.Get organized

3-bag method – put all breakfasts together in one bag, all lunches in a second, and suppers in a third.Series method – one day’s supply of food in a bag by itself.

Clean-upDrink your dishwater (don’t use soap).Reduce trash to the absolute minimum!

Page 20: Backpacking Nutrition

ResourcesCampmor has an OUTSTANDING web page for menu planning at http://www.campmor.com.Other web resources are out there – e.g. search Google on “backpacking nutrition.”Backpacker magazine usually has food articles.Food dehydrator how-to books at your public library.Hippie friends!?!

Page 21: Backpacking Nutrition

Campmor – nutrition information available