Food & Nutrition

13 Things You Should Never Eat on an Airplane

Breakfast sandwich

Hearty Breakfast Sandwich on a Bagel with Egg Bacon and CheeseBrent Hofacker/Shutterstock

Hit the brakes on that fast-food breakfast sandwich. The USDA lists biscuits with egg and ham as the worst fast-food item for sodium content. At 1,989 milligrams, one sandwich happens to be 86 percent of the recommended daily 2,300 milligrams of sodium. All that sodium can boost blood pressure, according to the American Heart Association, which is especially concerning when the flight’s low oxygen puts additional strain on your heart. Stick to fruit and yogurt or other low-salt options.

Carbonated beverages

Macro bubble and foam on the glass wall of colaYORIK/Shutterstock

Lower oxygen levels can make flying particularly trying for individuals with lung disorders. A study in the European Respiratory Journal found that 18 percent of passengers with lung disease had at least mild respiratory distress during a flight. To make matters worse, gas expansion at high altitudes can increase pressure on your lungs. The Aerospace Medical Association recommends avoiding carbonated beverages, which could increase in gas formation and compromise breathing. Stick to water to keep you hydrated and reduce gas production.

Popcorn

Popcorn Texture Background. Salted Popcorn Grains. Text SpaceGalapagosPhoto/Shutterstock

Picture this: You’re in your seat with your bag of butter-flavored popcorn ready to watch a movie when the plane hits an unexpected turbulent patch. The bag goes flying, covering you and your neighbors in popcorn kernels. Even if you avoid this embarrassing scenario, you’ll have buttery fingers, a rustling package, and a strong, buttery smell for everyone around you. And if the fiber results in flatulence, you’ll realize perhaps some trail mix or healthy chips might be a better option. Check out these 13 things your flight attendant won’t tell you.

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