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Healthy eating while flying has become a tangible option on many carriers in recent years. The newest survey measuring the best meal options at 30,000 feet has been conducted by Charles Stuart Platkin of the CUNY School of Public Health.
According to Platkin, nutritional value has increased across the board, while calorie count and cholesterol has decreased in most snack boxes and meals. He states that at this time last year, many snack boxes exceeded 850 calories while this year the average is 388 calories.
Virgin America topped the ranking in a group of eleven airlines based in North America. The scores were based on healthiness, variety, calorie count, improvement and creativity. Virgin offers a Travel Light snack menu with the nutritional information listed. There are individual packets of baked chips and nuts, but also heartier options like a salad with roasted pears and a holiday turkey sandwich with light cranberry mayo.
Coming in second place, Air Canada's "Food with a Conscience" partner creates tasty servings with fresh ingredients. Greek yogurt, fruit and under 400 calorie sandwich wraps are the most popular options among fliers.
Airlines that scored below two stars on the scale of one to five were Spirit, Frontier and Allegiant. These carriers don't offer up nutritional information and tend to offer choices that are high in salt content, sugar and fat.