Meal planning is a great way to establish health eating habits and make changes. Prepping your meals can take away the anxiety of having to choose, and then prepare what you have to eat. There are many benefits to meal planning, including:
- Saving money
- Time management
- Greater food control
- Less impulse buying
- Increased portion awareness
Preparing your meals each day or for the week is a great start. What about your snacks? A healthy snack can actually be good for your metabolism, too. If you don’t prepare your snacks ahead of time, it may be tempting to buy treats. That’s why prepping snacks along with your meals is such a good idea. Here are five ideas to try:
- Snack boxes. These are great because they can be completely customized. Fill a container with a snack-sized portion of cheese, whole wheat crackers, grapes … whatever you want. Put your little snack in a storage container and pull it out when you need a pick-me-up.
- Fruit. It’s so easy to add an extra apple, orange, banana or whatever you love to your lunch. Pack some extra fruit and you’ll have a quick and healthy sugar fix during the day.
- Veggies and dip. Cut up some of your favorite veggies early in the week and portion them out for a daily snack. Make your favorite dip to go along with them and put it in individual portion containers. All you have to do each day is grab a box of veggies and dip as you head out the door.
- Oatmeal. Oats are high in fiber and will help you stay full longer. It can be a great snack to help fill you up without overindulging. Choose carefully and avoid overly processed or sugar filled choices. Make a big pot early in the week to divide up for individual use or choose a healthy instant oatmeal to keep on hand.
- Salsa. A healthy salsa can be a great way to add extra veggies into your diet. Be sure to watch sodium and sugar. Choose a healthy option to go with it, like whole wheat tortillas, peppers or low-sodium crackers. It’s easy to prepare a single serving of salsa and a side to take along for a quick snack.
There are so many different ways to clean up your snacking habit. With a little preparation, you can be ready to turn down any tempting treats during the day. Don’t just plan your meals; plan your snacks, too. What you eat affects physical and mental health and wellbeing. It’s time to take control and make the best choices.