So my mom was proud to tell me last night that she officially fits into a size 14 in pants! WHAT?! That’s incredible and I’m so proud of her! She really wants to start working at this for her health, but she wanted some help on how to prepare and plan healthy food. I choose to make Sunday my meal prep day so that I am ready for the whole week.
Here’s what my prepping looks like for the week:
Apples, cut up cantaloupe, mixed greens for salads (probably with the apples, pecans and Apple Cider Honey Vinegrette I made), hard-boiled eggs, 1 Vietnamese noodle bowl (that’s what the small head of lettuce and brown rice vermicelli are for, with cucumbers, carrots, green onions and dressing that I made), plain Greek yogurt and unsweetened coconut milk for smoothies with the peaches in the back, three large bowls of a creole-styled veg soup with okra, kale and pink-eye peas, and one dinner of sautéed Bok Choy and rice. I forgot to add my carrot sticks and Babybel Gouda cheese in there too. I’m short a few dinners, but they will depend on what I get from my CSA on Thursday. I have homemade pesto to use up so I will most likely include some whole wheat pasta with pesto and a side salad.
- Make a list for the grocery store of healthy meals you’d like to have (a list helps you stay on track).
- While in the store, stick to the outer perimeter of the store (veggie section, meats, dairy). Enter the center isles only for items like canned vegetable, rice or quinoa, whole wheat pasta, olive oil or baking items, paper goods, etc.
- Make sure you get items that are ready to go and make your life easier… I always get carrot sticks, salad greens or spinach, Babybel single-serve cheeses, 100-calorie nut packs (or package your own), and fruit that is easy to carry. They even make pre-made hard-boiled eggs if you don’t have time for that.
- Come home and make one big pot of soup or chili or something that will give you leftovers for a few days. Once it finished cooking, portion out your dinners into containers so they are ready to go later in the week (this would be my Creole soup in the pyrex bowls). This way you always have one item ready to go for dinner if you don’t have time to cook.
- Hard boil 1 dozen eggs (or more for a larger family). I eat 2 eggs every day since it is a good source of protein for me. These are great to have on hand for snacks since protein helps fill you up.
- Look at what fruit you need to prepare… for me, it was cutting my cantaloupe and portioning it into 1-cup servings. Some fruit you might wish to cut and freeze for morning smoothies.
- If you don’t buy pre-cut lettuces, you may want to prepare the lettuce in advance. You can portion it out and lay a paper towel on top to soak away moisture. Many salads can be made a week ahead as long as you don’t add wet items, like cut tomatoes or dressing. Keep those items separate.
- Make homemade salad dressings to use for the week. The store-bought ones are generally loaded with salt, sugar and chemicals and making your own is simple. I use a ratio of 1/4 vinegar (any kind) or citrus juice, 3/4 cup oil and then seasonings.