Many people want to follow a healthy eating plan, but before – after coming home from a full day of dealing with rush hour traffic, people problems, and office politics, we wonder “What’s for dinner?” With hardly anything in the kitchen, we settle for ordering pizza (again) or decide to fill up on pantry snacks. Our busy lives often prevent us from reaching our nutritional, health, and fitness goals. As a result, we end up packing on unwanted pounds and eating convenient, not-so-nutritious foods instead of the necessary, wholesome foods that our bodies crave.
It may be difficult to maintain healthy eating habits while leading a busy lifestyle, but it is not impossible. The five simple tips below will ensure you have a healthy eating plan to fit into your busy schedule.
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Tips For Healthy Eating Plan For A Busy Lifestyle
1. Plan your meals out
If you don’t plan your meals ahead of time, you’re more likely to splurge on a restaurant meal or skip a meal, which is unhealthy and can slow down your metabolism. You don’t have to go into a lot of detail. Just grab a sheet of paper and outline the meals you will have Monday – Sunday. This makes food shopping and preparation so much easier. Try setting some time aside over the weekend to write down a grocery list and meals for the week. Easy-to-prepare ideas include casseroles, salads and most anything you can throw in a slow cooker.
2. Eat breakfast
Sometimes hitting the snooze button one too many times or rushing to get to work in the morning doesn’t allow you enough time to eat a proper breakfast. But preparing the most important meal of the day doesn’t have to be time-consuming. Eating breakfast provides you with the energy you need to get through your day and leads to increased concentration. When you eat a satisfying breakfast, you’re also less likely to overeat throughout the day. Smoothies are a quick, accessible option when you’re on the go. Start with frozen fruit, add some almond milk, a handful of spinach and a scoop of all-natural peanut butter or almond butter. Sprinkle in some chia seeds or flaxseed for a boost of fiber and pour it into a to-go mug as you run out the door.
3. Keep calm and freeze on
If you think your freezer is just for storing half eaten cartons of ice cream, you should think again. You can prep a bunch of one-dish meals like casseroles, chilis, and stews, and then freeze them without even having to cook them ahead of time. When you’re ready to eat, just pop your meal into the oven or place it on the stove and you have a hot, fresh, home-cooked meal in no time.
4. Always Have Snacks
Snacks are key to eating healthy when you’re busy. You should include them in your healthy eating plan. Having one or two healthy snacks a day can curb your hunger and help prevent bingeing on unhealthy options at the last minute. Keep a bag of raw almonds or cashews and some dried fruit in your car or your desk drawer. Throw an apple or a banana into your purse or briefcase on your way out the door. Keep your refrigerator stocked with cut-up veggies and small plastic containers of hummus or all-natural nut butters for dipping.
5. Shake it up in the mornings
No, I’m not talking about those ready made drinks that come in chocolate or vanilla or strawberry flavors. Healthy breakfast shakes and smoothies are a snap to make before you have to rush out the door in the morning. They will leave you feeling energized and full for a few good hours. There are so many delicious ways to mix up your shakes and smoothies that you’ll never get bored. You can use protein powder, fresh fruits and veggies, nuts, and even Greek yogurt.
6. Pack your lunch the night before.
No need to have a co-worker pick up McDonald’s for you anymore. If you eat lunch at your work place, pack your meal for the next day. You can also pack your own healthy snacks, such as trail mix, nuts, dried fruits, etc., and take it with you in an insulated bag.