11 Jun The top 5 tips for prepping healthy meals
There is an old saying, if you fail to plan you plan to fail – the same can be said when preparing or prepping meals. If you want to eat healthy and keep on track with your fitness goals, then you want to be prepping like a boss. So here are my top 5 tips to have you prepping just like a professional.
1. Start with a plan
Having a plan of what you’re going to eat in the week will not only help you stay on top of your nutrition goals, but it will also stop you from grabbing unhealthy fast food on the go and potentially stacking on the weight. Make a calendar for the week and note down what you are going to have for breakfast, lunch and dinner, what you want to eat post-workout and what kind of snacks you want to be munching on between meals.
2. Shopping list
Whatever you do, take a shopping list with you when you hit the grocery stores and stick to it. This ensures you buy all the ingredients you need to prepare your healthy meals for the week. No list means you will forget important items or worse, buy items you know you shouldn’t.
3. Plenty of storage
Trust me, any prepper knows the value of having plenty of tupperware in their cupboards. Invest in at least ten containers to accommodate all sorts of meals. And, don’t forget the smaller tubs for your snacks.
Have a variety of containers ranging in sizes from a quarter to two cups, which helps keeps your portions in check. For instance, pack nuts and hummus in quarter-cup containers and fruit in half-cup containers. For packing lunches, use the 2 cup size containers.
Weighing food all the time is a pain in the butt. Portion control containers are brilliantly simple and super effective. Each container is designed to measure one specific food group so you know you are eating the right amount.
4. Make enough for more
A simple quick-cooking technique is to make extra food at one meal for future meals. Just cook a big batch of soup, casseroles or stews (say on the weekend) and divide it up and voila, you have enough meals for the week.
Just some tips:
- Cool foods to refrigerator temperature before storing them in the freezer. It’s fine to refrigerate foods while they’re still warm.
- To avoid mystery meats and other foods of unknown age, label foods including what it is and the date it was made.
- Whatever you do don’t thaw perishable foods at room temperature – if left at room temperature for too long, bacteria may grow and produce heat-resistant toxins that can cause food-borne illness. Thaw the food in the fridge the night before.
5. Stock up on staples
Make sure you keep your pantry and freezer stocked with quick go-to items. Here is what I usually have on hand:
- Frozen fruits,
- Frozen veggies,
- Plain oatmeal or rolled oats,
- Canned beans,
- Diced tomatoes,
- Chicken or veggie stock,
- Canned tuna,
- Brown rice and wholemeal pasta,
- Virgin olive oil,
- Herbs and spices.
Having healthy options on hand to make a last-minute snack or meal prevents you from ordering takeout or eating out. You have no excuse but to eat healthy when you have lots of options on hand.