Having a good meal prep strategy can help you lose weight. This study shows that people who take time to prep meals have healthier eating habits.
Unfortunately, most of us are caught up with work, school, or family and don’t have time to prep meals. So eating in restaurants or ordering food is the only option.
Gladly, you can eat healthy without spending much time cooking, if you prep your meals ahead of time. In fact, if done right, meal prepping can save you money.
Frankly, one needs more than healthy dinner ideas to eat healthy. So I’ve come up with tips that will help you prep meals with ease.
Here you go – 18 meal prep ideas for weight loss
#1 Have a meal plan
This is the first thing you should do before you buy food. It’ll help you know what to cook and when to cook it.
The meal plan should guide you when making a grocery shopping list. Going shopping without a shopping list can lead to impulse buys of unhealthy foods.
You don’t have to come up with a new meal plan every other week. Use the same meal plan for several weeks/ months.
#2 Buy good quality meal prep containers
Having containers makes it easy to store food –containers keep the food fresh and make it simple to remain organized.
Buy containers which are BPA free to avoid them melting in the oven – use glass or Tupperware containers. To avoid confusion and overeating, get containers of the same sizes and shapes.
#3 Start slow
Meal prepping is supposed to make life easier. But that doesn’t mean you should prep weekly meals. Things will backfire if you try to prep food once a week without prior experience.
Start slow by prepping meals for 2-3 days. By doing this, you’ll be able to learn what works and what doesn’t. And if you make mistakes they won’t be too costly
Some folks prep dinner meals only, while other prep all meals. Prep the meals you always lack time to cook in advance.
Once you have prepped meals for a while you can try cooking weekly meals.
#4 Purchase a food scale
It’s not always necessary to count calories in order to lose weight. But if you’re not good at estimating calories or you have a tendency of overeating, a food scale will be a great tool for you.
In fact, this won’t be hectic since you only have to weigh portions once or twice a week. It’s worth noting that studies show that most dieters underestimate the number of calories they consume. So get a scale if you don’t have an estimate of the number of calories you consume.
#5 Don’t try new recipes
It’s not a good idea to try new recipes when cooking a lot of food. It’ll be a time killer and the whole meal can backfire.
Stick to the recipes you already know how to prepare. Frankly, you don’t need to eat a wide variety of foods to stay healthy.
#6 Chop vegetables ahead of time
Meal prepping doesn’t entail cooking alone, chopping vegetables and fruits in advance can save you time.
If you usually forget to eat your veggies, this approach will be helpful. Chop them and put them in containers – and when it’s time to cook you just throw them in the pan.
#7 Prepare the complicated recipes first
The order in which you’ll prepare foods will make a huge difference. Cook the complicated recipes at the start of the week (preferably Sunday afternoon), then prep the simple recipes in the midweek.
You may get caught up or be too busy to prep complicated recipes in the middle of the week.
And I advise you use the same strategy when training. Do the most challenging exercises first then finish your workout with simpler exercises.
#8 Store healthy snacks in the house
Eating snacks helps control cravings and hunger when dieting. But most folks store unhealthy snacks in the house which encourage binging.
So keep only healthy snacks in the house. This could be foods like eggs, fruits, nuts, veggies and so on.
Put the snacks in containers – research shows that people overeat snacks when they eat them straight from the bag.
READ MORE at Focus Fitness
#9 Don’t have the ‘all or nothing mentality’
It may not be possible to prep meals all the time, but prep them when you can. Don’t assume there’s no need of doing it if you can’t do it all the time.
Prepping meals occasionally is better than not prepping at all. And as you continue prepping meals, you’ll discover easy and quick ways to do it.
#10 Buy healthy condiments
Eating healthy doesn’t mean eating boring and tasteless food. You can make healthy and delicious food without adding unhealthy spices.
Use healthy condiments like fresh ginger, olive oil, fresh ginger and lemon to prepare meals. Your food will be delicious and you’ll be encouraged to prep meals regularly.
#11 Put lunch salads in a glass jar
Most people think carrying salad to work is a bad idea because it’ll get mushy. But if you use a glass jar the veggies can stay fresh for long.
Put the dressings at the bottom of the jar, then layer them with vegetables like peppers and beets, and then put the leafy greens for the top. Place a paper towel on top of the glass jar to absorb moisture if you’re storing the salad for a couple of days.
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