Updated: May 6, 2020
How I eat healthy, home-cooked meals every day.
Everyone wants to eat healthy and lose weight. We want to have our bikini bodies by summer, and we want to have that elusive heart shaped butt. So, we start the new year with good intentions. We plan our first week of meals and a few things happen, so we only get 5 healthy meals in. The next week we don’t plan quite as well, and we have to eat out a couple of times for lunch, and we only get 4 good meals in at home. School starts again, and we get busy, and we just gradually get back to eating the same old things. And those blessed Girl Scouts have to sell their devil cookies right after we start our diet! Why?
So, how do we continue a healthy lifestyle for longer than a week? Read on for my 3 tips to eating healthy year round in less time!
KISS-Keep It Simple Sexy
Don’t try to be Martha Stewart in the kitchen and plan to cook a meal with 20 ingredients every night. You will fail. Your goal should be to have dinner done in less than 30 minutes and to have a minimal amount of dishes.
You want to have a lean protein, a veggie, and a healthy carb at most meals. Your lean proteins will be fish, chicken, turkey, eggs, and egg whites. Your veggies will be anything but regular potatoes. And your carbs will be brown rice, quinoa, sprouted tortillas, or sprouted bread.
For fish, I recommend sticking to the wild-caught white fish like cod or flounder. Salmon is also a great fish to have once in a while. Packaged tuna is great and simple to include in lunches.
You can have turkey in any variety, including turkey bacon, turkey pepperoni, ground turkey, or turkey breasts. This is the same for chicken. I used to think it would be weird to cook with ground turkey or ground chicken, but I am used to the flavor now and it has a very similar texture to ground beef.
Eggs and egg whites are great for breakfast, but you can also use them for snacks. I like to have 2 boiled eggs for a snack at least once a week.
Now that you have simple ingredients to include in your meals, you want to make preparing them simple as well! Always look for thin-sliced if you are purchasing chicken breasts or turkey breasts. When you buy them thin sliced, you don’t have to slice them yourself, which means less dishes and less prep time. They also only take about 5-10 minutes to cook when you buy thin-sliced.
Buy veggies that are frozen. When they are frozen, they are more fresh than canned vegetables, and they don’t go bad like fresh vegetables can. I also think they taste much better. In addition to frozen vegetables, I look for the steam-able packages. This means I can just throw the bag in the microwave and have the vegetables done in 4.5 minutes, with no extra dishes! When they are done, you can just open the top, throw some seasoning on it, and shake it up!
Preparing your meals before the week starts helps you stick to your goal of eating healthy all week long. If you have any vegetables that you know you will need to have chopped up during the week, do them all on Sunday and store them in the refrigerator. This means that you are only getting the cutting board dirty one time that week, and you are saving a ton of time each night. The only veggies that I usually have to chop are sweet peppers and onions. I like to include those in my Mexican meals because they give so much more flavor.
Prepare your snacks and lunches on Sunday as well. Knowing that you can just reach in the refrigerator and grab your food every morning really makes it so much easier! I use canned chicken and tuna for my lunch recipes. This makes preparation super quick and easy. It usually only takes about 30-60 minutes for me to prep everything for the week on Sundays. I use Ziploc bags for veggies and lunch meat servings, and small Ziploc containers for almond butter, hummus, and veggies. I also use the same size containers for all my lunches so that they stack in the refrigerator easier and take up less space. I use one of the door shelves in the refrigerator to throw all my snacks in once they are prepared.
I recommend eating five times a day. You will have breakfast, lunch, dinner, and two snacks. Since we have two snacks a day, I like to keep them super simple. I usually do boiled eggs (I buy them already boiled), turkey and cheese, veggies and hummus, apple and almond butter, banana and almond butter, or nut thins and hummus. Stick to a protein, fruit, or vegetable, and you will have a simple, healthy snack any time.
Keeping it simple is how I am able to stick to my diet plan year round. I have times where I mess up, or go out to eat more often than others, but I know I can easily get back on board with the very next meal. Giving myself the freedom to mess up every once in a while, really makes it so much easier to stay on target. So don’t beat yourself up if you wait to long to eat and grab a snickers instead of your veggies; forgive yourself, and go back on the plan with the next meal. Life is full of surprises and compromises, but if you consistently practice this philosophy, you will find yourself messing up less and less and you will see results! So, Keep It Simple Sexy!
What are your tips and tricks for making healthy simple? Let us know in the comments!