If you want to shed those extra pounds, meal planning and preparation are the perfect solutions. Being prepared not only lets you control your portion size, but it also saves precious time and provides healthy food options throughout the week. Here are eight simple meal-prepping techniques to aid your weight loss journey that will work wonders.
1) Start With A Plan
If you’re looking to make meal-prepping a success, start by establishing clear goals and intentions. Outline which meal you would like for the upcoming week, figure out how many hours of cooking each day can be dedicated to it, and ensure that all needed ingredients are at hand before beginning. Taking these steps will put your journey off on the right foot.
2) Shop Smartly
To benefit both your health and your wallet, shop smartly when heading to the grocery store by prioritizing organic whole foods over pre-packed items. You can also consider bulk purchasing as it can be more cost-effective while providing enough for an entire week.
When shopping for nutritious and cost-effective products, ensure that all vegetables are fresh and untouched; if you can not locate any satisfactory options at an affordable price, explore the frozen section of the grocery store. Frozen fruits and vegetables boast equal nutritional benefits to their fresh counterparts.
3) Do Your Research
Doing some research into recipes beforehand is a great way to make meal-prepping easier and more effective. It’s also the perfect opportunity to choose dishes that fit well with your health objectives, so you can reach your goals while still enjoying delicious meals.
Pinterest or YouTube can be a great place to discover new recipes for your upcoming meals. However, it’s important to always check the nutritional facts before settling on a recipe. You can also follow food blogs, as they can be a great source of inspiration. For example, here is an oven-baked salmon recipe at primaverakitchen.com, which is a blog that focuses on whole food and clean eating.
4) Buy Containers
To make meal-prepping a breeze, get yourself some containers that you can store and transport your meals with. Glass is an excellent option as it is non-toxic, inexpensive, and eco-friendly, plus it can go right from the oven to the microwave. Additionally, it is great to have smaller compartments for single servings or snacks that you can take on the go whenever hunger strikes.
If you buy plastic containers, make sure they are BPA-free so they don’t contain the organic compound Bisphenol-A. This industrial chemical has been used to make certain plastics and resins since the 1950s. Exposure to BPA is concerning since research shows it to be associated with brain and gland damage, increased blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. Also, it can affect children’s behavior.
5) Invest In Labels
To avoid any confusion and make meal-prepping a smooth process, get yourself some labels that you can attach to each container. This way, you won’t have to guess what’s inside or forget about leftovers stuffed away in the back of your fridge.
Labels are also a great way to organize your fridge. It allows you to maintain a neat look. Nowadays, you can even find ones with cute illustrations or motivational messages that will give your meal-prep sessions an extra boost of inspiration.
6) Cook In Batches
Cooking in batches will not only save you time but also ensure that meals for the upcoming week don’t become too monotonous. This technique is especially useful when prepping food for several days at once, as it will ensure variety on your plate and prevent ingredients from going bad before being consumed.
Batch cooking is also the perfect solution for those looking to simplify their meal-prepping routine. You can freeze leftovers in single containers and make your own grab-and-go breakfast, lunch, and dinner packages that are ready whenever you need them.
7) Get Creative
Don’t be afraid to get creative with your meal-prepping sessions. There are plenty of ways you can customize dishes according to your personal taste. Experiment with different flavor combinations or add ingredients like spices, herbs, nuts, seeds, and superfoods for an extra nutritional boost.
You can even try making some simple swaps here and there – swap white rice for quinoa, sweet potatoes for regular potatoes, or lean proteins like chicken for red meat. With the right ingredients, you’ll soon have healthy meals that are full of flavor without compromising on nutrition.
8) Clean Up Right After
Finally, don’t forget to leave the kitchen spotless. Discard all garbage, mop any messes, and store all cutlery in its place. This will create an aesthetically pleasing look while also making it easier for you to jump right into prepping your meals when tomorrow arrives.
Follow the above 8 simple meal-prepping techniques to aid your weight loss journey. Meal prepping is a superb solution for anyone trying to shed some pounds while still enjoying good-tasting, nourishing food. You’ll also have an arsenal of flavorsome and balanced meals every week.
To a Fitter Healthier You,
The Fitness Wellness Mentor