May 23, 2011 at 2:16 am #1274256
I did the JMT a couple of years ago and found it difficult to eat much – perhaps a Clif bar for breakfast, some pine nuts and dried fruit in the day, and a portion of MH Beef Stroganoff (of which I never tire) a day – hardly a calorie-fest.
I am just wondering if anyone else has this sort of experience?
I assume it is the effect of altitude (took me a few days to get used to it) – as in the UK, 1300m is it really.
Strangely I did not feel weak or less able because of it.
And I'm asking as I am considering the Sierra High Route this summer and would welcome any ideas on how I could eat more….as it looks tad tougher than the JMT?May 23, 2011 at 7:36 am #1739975
It isn't that abnormal to not have any appetite at altitude – but one thing to watch is that you don't get dehydrated, this can really affect your appetite.May 23, 2011 at 8:56 am #1740003
Thanks Sarah – good news to hear it is not uncommon; it has only been an issue on the JMT however, in the European Alps I don't spend much time above 2500m and have never noticed it.
I stayed well-hydrated on the JMT – so perhaps one solution (sic) will be using some sort of carb powder (like Palatinose) in the water I drink.May 23, 2011 at 10:12 am #1740038
@biointegraLocale: Puget Sound
I find savory foods help me to eat more – also as close to things that you would eat at home. I can handle about 1 energy bar, and that is it. Soy is not the best for digestion and would be best avoided at altitude. Noodles and extra oil and cheese can be good strategies. /aMay 23, 2011 at 11:51 am #1740095
I have found that eating over the day small bites really helps – no big meals. A small cup of brothy soup before dinner, etc. I don't eat a ton of protein or anything hard to digest in one sitting either – carbs and fruit are my friends :-)May 23, 2011 at 3:03 pm #1740187
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Eating is good, and so is drinking.
Try switching to very soupy meals. They may be easier to eat.
CheersMay 23, 2011 at 3:59 pm #1740215
@saparisorLocale: Pacific Northwest
I just returned from Bolivia and had very little appetite for the first 2 days. I forced myself to eat a Balance Bar the first 2 mornings, then mostly water and a little PowerAid just to keep even a few calories going in. Finally, on a long car ride to La Paz, I bought a can of Pringles at a random roadside stand. That was the real turning point, although it really wasn't until the next (3rd day) that my appetite returned.
I think altitude affects different people differently, but appetite decrease is certainly common enough.May 23, 2011 at 4:14 pm #1740221
Lots of people are bothered by a temporary loss of appetite at altitude. One way to work around that is to get some calories in your liquids. I use Gatorade powder, but there are many choices for a hiker.
–B.G.–May 23, 2011 at 4:43 pm #1740233
If you've recently traveled across several time zones to reach the starting point of your journey, the time difference may well play into a loss of appetite as well…May 23, 2011 at 4:51 pm #1740237
@ouzelLocale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
"Strangely I did not feel weak or less able because of it."
You were probably getting a substantial amount of energy from metabolizing body fat.
As suggested by other posters, energy drinks are a good source of carbs in the absence of appetitite. There are many to choose from. Also soupy meals, as per Roger Caffin, e.g. potato soup, pea soup, thinned out refried bens, corn chowder.May 23, 2011 at 5:13 pm #1740247
I can go a very long way on corn chowder and Gatorade.
–B.G.—May 23, 2011 at 7:50 pm #1740325
Ed, I did the first 90 miles of the JMT last year and experienced the same thing. I could not believe how little I was able to eat. I did find that I at like a horse at both Reds and VVR. Lower altitude?? I lost 10 pounds in 10 days… I am doing the full JMT this year and am worried about going 20 days with so little to eat. Did you ever get your appetite back towards the middle/end of the trail?May 23, 2011 at 7:50 pm #1740326
@ouzelLocale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
"I can go a very long way on corn chowder and Gatorade."
I'll have to admit that's a combination I've never tried.May 23, 2011 at 11:13 pm #1740379
Thanks for the replies – it looks like carb powders may be the way to go. That and Corn Chowder – which I have never heard of…what is it?
Randall – towards the end I was picking up…but just a little, like you though I ate pretty well in towns/resupply places.May 23, 2011 at 11:48 pm #1740386
Just as you might imagine, it is a very thick soup based on corn plus a few other vegetable flavorings (packaged dry, of course). If I want to go wild, I add some chopped turkey sausage to it.
It's one of those quaint delicacies that we colonists developed on this side of the pond.
–B.G.–May 24, 2011 at 8:10 am #1740448
Mmm…chowder. You can make almost anything into chowder! Thick and creamy, hearty and full of stuff – be it veggies, meat, etc!
Get some freeze-dried corn and add to any recipe :-)May 24, 2011 at 9:36 am #1740503
I think I'll try and make some of this colonial gruel over the next couple of days ;-)
Thanks for the recipe – a good basis.May 24, 2011 at 2:17 pm #1740617
Sarah's point is important. Adding a few nuggets of freeze dried corn to the basic chowder adds an air of authenticity to it. Also add a few dry flakes of green and red bell pepper.
Here in the colonies, we gained our culinary independence a long time ago.
–B.G.–May 24, 2011 at 6:06 pm #1740710
@obxcolaLocale: Outer Banks of North Carolina
no class, no class at all………….
You must be logged in to reply to this topic.