Tips to eat clean and healthy with a meal plan

I hate the word diet.  It represents deprivation to me. 

Let’s break the common misconceptions when it comes to diet.

Sometimes, people tend to skip their meals with the thought that they are going to maintain their diet.  It’s important to understand that you don’t have to restrict yourself from eating delicious, healthy meals in order to “diet”.  I don’t ever recommend that people “diet”.  It’s gotten to be a dirty word that makes us cringe and trend towards undereating which stalls weight loss and makes us frustrated. 

But let’s focus on how we can avoid breaking the budget in order to get some super nutritious meals into our “diet” shall we?

 

List the Essential Nutrients you Need to Keep you Going for the Entire Week

Now most of us won’t do this because we aren’t all food geeks lwhich is fine.  But in general, the list should consist of complete nutrients such as proteins, fats, minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants.  Some metabolic types don’t need many carbohydrates to thrive but that’s another discussion.  This list can help you determine the right foods you need to buy.  

 

Search for Recipes that Contain the Nutrients on the List

Nowadays, it is effortless to look for a particular recipe to help you with your meal planning. Food blogs and cooking videos can help you look for the meal. They give endless ideas of what to cook on a rotational basis.  They are useful especially if you don’t have any dish in mind. Ensure you choose recipes that contain the nutrients in your list.  HINT:  If you stick with whole foods, you will likely get most if not all your ideal nutrients on your list.

 

Customize Your Recipes so you Can Still Use them in the Upcoming Weeks

You can also customize some of the ingredients in your recipes, so the flavor of your food suits your taste. If you only eat selected foods (sweet potatoes and avocados are a daily thing for me), changing up some of the ingredients in the recipe allows you to jazz up your taste buds and enjoy your meal. If you have kids at home, you can mix and match the elements you know they’ll enjoy.

It is also helpful to change things up if there are foods you are restricted to eat if you have a health condition.  If you are allergic to shrimp or crab, consider other foods rich in omega-3 such as chia seeds, flaxseed oil, and leafy green vegetables or consider opting for a high-quality supplement in addition to these foods.  This way, you can still sustain the same nutrients needed by your body without risking your health.

If you find a meal easy to prepare, you can still make use of your list in the next days. You can just change some of its ingredients, so your family still finds them exciting to eat.  You never want your food to get boring, that makes junk and processed food look better and harder to avoid. 

 

Make a Shopping List from the Recipes on your List

Customizing the ingredients and making a shopping list both provide the same benefit. Doing both is helpful if some of the components are not available in the market. Make sure you have other options, so you will not run out of choices if the food is expensive or it is unavailable. Remember, you don’t have to break your budget to meal plan.

To make a budget-friendly shopping list, check if the fruits and vegetables are in the season because they are typically cheaper compared to those that are not. Also, check if some of the ingredients are on sale.

Though organic fruits and vegetables are sometimes harder to find, never miss buying them if you have a chance. They’re cleaner to eat since they are grown naturally without the use of pesticides.

Make sure you buy enough foods based on the serving size of your recipes but not too much. Stored foods lose their nutrients if you keep them for too long of a time.

 

Store Foods Properly.

Ensure that you store your groceries correctly to ensure the foods are still fresh whenever you need to cook and eat them. Proper storage is critical, especially for fruits and vegetables. Make sure you put them in a clean container before placing them in the fridge.  Also, remember to keep your freezer at the right temperature so the foods in it will not lose their freshness, flavor, and nutrients.

 

Now that you have these tips, schedule time on your calendar so you can make some healthy meals.  Stick to your plan so you can enjoy the benefits of eating healthy. 

 

 

Did this blog overwhelm you with the idea of more work and brain power required to follow through on it in your life?  Then you may want to check out my Real Food Meal Plan Membership where I have done ALL the work for you already!  Life is short, you are busy and your meal planning can be done already each and every week by me, I’d love to take this task off of your plate.  Check it out!

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