Make Time for Healthy Eating: Tips for Success
Healthy eating should be attainable and enjoyable. However, just like the floor doesn’t vacuum itself, healthy food doesn’t just appear on your table. Check out these short cuts and planning tips that keep you on track and out of the drive through lane.
Keep a stocked pantry. Set yourself up for success and keep healthy foods readily available.
1. Keep a variety of fresh, canned and frozen fruit at home. Smoothies, desserts, snacks, lunches – the possibilities are endless.
2. Check the sales. Buying for a family can be pricey, so plan meals around what sales are available that week.
3. Consider buying in bulk. Wholesale clubs and local stores are offering larger quantities, which decreases shopping trips and maximizes time.
Plan ahead. I say this every day, to myself, my family and my clients. Find one day to meal prep and save time throughout the week.
1. Roast pans of vegetables with canola oil, salt and pepper. Then pair them with chicken, eggs or beans for a well-rounded meal later in the week.
2. Make to-go bags of your fruit, trail mix or whole grain cereal to eat on the way to practice or the gym.
3. Prep your proteins! Cooking meat ahead of time can save time and clean up. I love to cook chicken breasts and seasoned lean beef in bulk. Then, I freeze in bags and enjoy whenever I’m in a time crunch.
Don’t be afraid to freeze. Did you know there are plenty of foods that you can make ahead of time and freeze for use at a later time? Doesn’t get much more time-saving than that.
1. Crockpot meals can be assembled in bulk, individually frozen, and made when needed.
2. Pasta bakes or casseroles can be frozen in disposable containers and put directly in the oven on busy nights.
3. Soups and chili can be made in batches then frozen in small or large containers for enjoyment later.
Make healthy eating a priority by planning ahead. Set yourself up for success by trying these tips, you’ll save time and money!
Ellen Thomsen, MS, RD, LMNT, CDE is a clinical dietitian at CHI Health, working in Oncology and Functional nutrition. Ellen helps patients improve nutrition habits during cancer treatment and beyond. She is a group fitness instructor at the CHI Health Lakeside Wellness Center and enjoys helping people of all fitness abilities be active. Ellen is passionate about helping patients improve their lives through nutrition, activity and stress management.