Feeding our bodies well can be a challenge, especially when we are all so busy. That’s always the excuse, isn’t it? I’ve been thinking about the little things I do to eat well and wanted to share them with you.
Here are 10 actionable tips to help even the busiest of us to eat well.
1. Make breakfast the night before.
We all know how it is. You wake up late and are rushing to get out the door. You just don’t have time to make breakfast, so you grab something at a gas station or drive-thru. Wouldn’t it be great if breakfast was cooked and ready to go when you wake up? Sure would, so make that omelette or oatmeal beforehand. You can even store your breaky in a portable container and eat on the go.
2. Not a breakfast eater? Try a nutrient-packed smoothie in the AM.
When some people wake up the last thing they want to do is immediately eat. Try a smoothie instead! I load mine up with frozen fruit, spinach, avocado, almond milk and chia seeds.
3. Pack and bring your own lunches.
I know—*snore*. Whoops, just fell asleep thinking about how my life is going to be PB & J everyday because that’s all I have time for. There is no need to stress yourself out. . Lunch doesn’t have to be fancy and complicated. I hope you heard that. Give yourself a break. Take out a container. Throw in a protein, grain, vegetable, and fruit and you’re good to go.
4. Don’t have time to cook a whole meal? We’ve all been there! Build yourself a meal salad or loaded quinoa bowl.
Meal salads and quinoa bowls can be easy once you how to build them. The base for meal salad are, unsurprisingly, leafy greens. Pile on a protein (chicken, lentils, beans…), a grain (rice, barely, pasta…), more veggies (bell peppers, green onions, carrots), and a dressing. Have some fruit for dessert and CONGRATS! You’ve got yourself a complete meal.
The base for a quinoa bowl is just that, quinoa. FYI–quinoa has some grain and protein properties. To make this a complete meal, add a some more protein and grain(s), tons of veggies and a dressing. Don’t forget your fruit for dessert and you have yet another complete, nutritious meal. Yay!
5. Keep your pantry stocked with delicious, healthy snacks.
I don’t know about you, but I usually need a snack between meals. It’s really easy to grab the chips or sugary cereal—totally fine once in a while, but when my body is hungry, I need to give it nutrients not empty calories. Have homemade granola, nuts, and roasted chickpeas around. Keep veggies, fruit, hummus, nut butters, and whole wheat bread around to snack on.
6. Give that crockpot some love.
It can’t get much easier than a crockpot meal. You literally fill it with food, walk away and come back to a ready-to-eat meal. So great and there’s good news. The internet is full of healthy crockpot meal recipes.
7. Drink plenty of water. Yes, plain, old WATER.
I know water can be boring, but we all know that most of body is made of water. Almost every single organ and bodily function requires water. When they don’t get what they need, they don’t function properly. You skin, brain, and heart need water. Your stomach and liver need water. Nutrients can’t be distributed without water. Staying hydrated can help reduce sluggishness, headaches, that foggy brain feeling and much more. Amazing, right?!
The two things I’ve found most helpful are carrying a water bottle and drinking one to two glasses of water right when I wake up. (I sometimes struggle with the latter. By the time noon rolls around, I remember that neglecting that step is why I’m so darn thirsty.) If you are tired of plain water, flavor it with herbs, frozen fruits, cucumbers, citrus-the possibilities are endless. Here are 4 ideas for you: https://hayleypfleghaar.com/water-infusions/ .
8. Fill up on veggies first.
Whenever I serve a multicourse meal, I always dig into my vegetables first. That way, I don’t find myself too full by the time my fork finds them. Make those veggies the focal point.
9. One-bowl and one- pot meals will be your BEST FRIEND.
Everything you need in one bowl—yes, please. Nobody ha time to cook 4 course meals every day. Some people have told me that throwing a protein, grain, vegetable and fruit into one bowl isn’t pretty. It looks messy and unprofessional. Well, they are just going to have to deal with my messy one-bowl meals because I love them! They are so simple.
10. Don’t be restrictive.
I saved the best for last, folks. Allow yourself your favorite treats once in a while *hallelujah* It’s so encouraging to know that I don’t have to swear off brownies or nachos. Eating well is a goal you will be working toward daily. It isn’t something you do for a month until it becomes automatic. Sorry, it’s just not that simple. Sure, it does become easier, but you still have to make conscious, health-benefitting decisions every day. Be gracious with yourself and enjoy life while you work toward a healthy way of eating.
How do you encourage yourself to eat well???
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