It has been a long hard day at work and you are tired and hungry. You can’t wait so you open a bag of chips and begin chowing them down as you plan dinner. Before you even realize it the bad of chips is gone, you have eaten a few cookies and you are not even hungry anymore. I think that we have all, “Been there, done that.” So how can you avoid this?
I have a few tricks and tips that will help. You can easily throw together a healthy and very tasty meal in minutes, even on your busiest night. The trick is to implement these tips so that they become second nature and rather than munching out on junk, you will be on top of your game. No more will you be wondering what you should make you will know and avert the dinner crisis.
Planning ahead will really help you and it does not have to be a long drawn out process. Many of my clients get overwhelmed with meal prep and that is the last thing I would want you to do, One of the things that I do to make my workweek easier is to do some chopping on Sunday so that they are ready when I want them, Just do this with the things that you are going to incorporate into your meals during the week. For example, I chop or slice onions for stir-frys, omelets, or something tomato based. I slice my mushrooms and peppers, It isn’t overwhelming, doesn’t take long but it cuts down on my prep time for my meal because I am not starting from scratch. I can make a delicious and nutritious meal quickly and stay away from the snacks,
Make sure that you have plenty of fish in your freezer the kind that say, “No need to thaw” and can go straight from the freezer to the oven. The American Heart Association recommends that you eat at least 2 servings of fish per week. While that fish is cooking in the oven you can get your veggies and a salad done in no time with the things that you have pre-prepped. When you choose fish make sure it is wild caught and not farm raised to ensure the healthiest, most nutritious fish same with shrimp. Keep frozen shrimp that have been peeled and deveined in your freezer for stir-fries or to toss in some organic pasta with veggies. Quick, easy and healthy.
You know what? No one actually likes peeling and cutting up a butternut squash, mincing garlic, or shaving brussels sprouts. Save yourself the time and the headache and purchase them at the supermarket, you may spend a little more but you will save so much time. Have fun with the options that are available such as spiralized vegetables, like zucchini, carrots or eggplant. Experiment with cauliflower rice or matchstick carrots, having that prep done for you will not only save precious time but add creativity to your meals.
So you never have time for breakfast yet you find time to run through a drive through or stop at a convenience store? Here is an idea that will be healthy and save you time, premade smoothie cups. Prepack a container with fruit (keep it to one serving of fruit, if you want 2 fruits then use 1/2 serving of each if you eat too much fruit it will spike your insulin and cause you to feel tired, think tasty and healthy) Add a protein (nut butter) of your choice and other healthy choices such as coconut, kale, cocoa powder, chia seeds, cashews or almonds. The next morning dump it in your blender with your choice of liquid, think healthy organic milk, coconut water, unsweetened Greek yogurt sweetened with stevia and blend, Frozen wild blueberries are a great addition and researchers have found that wild blueberries have twice the antioxidants then farm raised ones, and they make a great crunchy snack.
This all sounds great Steph, you may be thinking but what about those days when I am starved and need to eat NOW? My recommendation is to keep some quick cooking (10 minutes or less) grains on hand such as barley, and some already chopped organic salad greens and canned tuna or chicken, even the roasted ones in the grocery store. You can walk in the door and put the grain on to cook, grab out your greens and protein and toss it all together. A. healthy meal that came together very quickly. Other things that I keep on hand is Organic range free eggs which I hard boiled, canned black beans and chick peas, jarred pasta sauce, hummus, veggies, organic noodles and even organic pizza, (it is ok occasionally). I also keep around buffalo mozzarella, dill pickles and grape tomatoes.
One of my very favorite treats is grape tomatoes with pearl mozzarella basil and a little olive oil, salt, pepper and basaltic vinegar, Fast and easy, with no chopping and oh so good.
Stay away from sugar and processed food at all costs. Your body will thank you for it!