Many people want to build a healthy lifestyle based on nutritious eating plans, but few know where to begin. With aisles and aisles of selections in the grocery store and countless brands boasting organic, natural and plant-based ingredients, it’s not only overwhelming, it can be hard to know just which options are the best.
So where is the best place to start with healthy eating?
It’s simple—prioritize good sources of protein, whole grains, and fruits and veggies high in vitamins and minerals.
Healthy meal prep ideas
No matter what meal you’re preparing, there are certain do’s and don’ts that apply across the board, including:
Do opt for whole grain, and don’t purchase enriched, white or refined wheat products
Stay away from items with added sugars or high grams of sugar
Try to incorporate a little less red meat and more white meat or fish as your sources of protein
Do opt for tons of veggies, as they are a main source of necessary vitamins
Stick to natural sweeteners like honey
Learn your superfoods, and use them as often as possible as they contain important nutrients like antioxidants
Once you know the basics, you can begin experimenting with exciting new recipes for each meal of the day.
Breakfast meal prepping ideas
While many Americans skip breakfast or substitute it with a cup of coffee during their morning commute, it’s actually very important for sustained energy and balanced metabolism throughout the day. So getting food into your stomach each morning, even if it’s berries and oatmeal, is important to a healthy lifestyle.
Thankfully, there are hundreds of healthy, easy and tasty breakfast ideas you can plan for in your weekly meal prep.
Tamago Kake Gohan
This Japanese breakfast dish has a name much more intimidating than the actual recipe itself. Simply a rice bowl topped with eggs, avocados, roasted broccoli and a little tamari and olive oil (plus room for additional, toppings if desired), this powerhouse breakfast will offer you tons of vitamins and minerals (broccoli alone contains vitamins C, K, A and B9) and will keep you full till lunch.
Cinnamon Quinoa Breakfast Bowl
You might not expect quinoa for breakfast, but it’s a great alternative if you’re getting tired of oatmeal. Simply prepare your quinoa with almond milk, cinnamon sticks and a dash of vanilla extract, top with additional nuts and fruit, and you’ve got yourself a protein-packed way to start the day.
So long as it isn’t slathered in condiments, a breakfast burrito can actually be extremely nutritious. Eggs are high in protein and easy to prepare; you can choose a turkey or chicken-based sausage instead of hard-to-digest pork options; black beans contain needed calcium and magnesium; and freshly chopped veggies add color and flavor, not to mention crucial nutrients.
Lunch meal prep ideas
Moving right along, it’s important to prepare your daily lunches ahead of time to keep you from eating out during the work day.
Veggie and Hummus Sandwich
A little whole grain bread, organic hummus and every vegetable you know and love make for a delicious, healthy sandwich. It’ll trick salad-haters into getting their daily greens and it’s totally customizable for those who prefer to throw on some tuna or turkey slices.
Rotisserie Chicken Salad
Depending on the kind of mayo you use, you can make a delicious chicken salad with chopped celery, a dash of pepper and some whole grain crackers for a simple, healthy lunch. Change it up by serving it on a bed of lettuce or dolloping it onto whole grain sandwich bread.
Chicken Tacos with Avocado Salad
Everyone loves tacos, and these healthy chicken tacos, whipped up with radishes and avocados, plus the rich taste of cilantro and lime, give you not just a lunch to look forward to, but one with tons of nutrients that’ll keep you moving throughout the afternoon.
Ideas for prepping a healthy dinner
While prepping for dinner, consider making enough so you can have leftovers for lunch tomorrow!
Honey Garlic Glazed Salmon
Salmon is rich in omega-3s, chock full of protein and contains tons of B vitamins—sear it in a pan with the rich flavors of honey and garlic and you’ve got yourself a winner. Taking about 20 minutes to make in total, it’s an ideal recipe following a long day at work.
Sweet and Tangy Chicken Burgers
Topped with onion, lettuce, tomato and cucumber, these chicken burgers are not only good for you, they’re incredibly refreshing. Try these simple burgers (takes only 20 minutes) the next time you’re up to grill and relish the recipe’s rich Middle Eastern flavors.
Angel-Hair Pasta with Shrimp and Greens
Craving a little Italian? This angel-hair pasta dish contains the rich seasonings of basil, olive oil and lemon zest, plus the health benefits of kale, shrimp and garlic for a meal that won’t leave you feeling guilty after pasta night.
Eat well, feel great
Our bodies, like our cars, need the best fuel to keep on running year after year. In order to best take care of ourselves, it’s important to choose the right ingredients to keep all our body’s systems up and running.
For more information and guidance on how to incorporate healthy living strategies, both mental and physical, into your life, reach out to Tapestry today by calling 828-490-4032.