Everyone knows the importance of maintaining a healthy diet. Yet, we rarely put in an effort to eat healthily due to our busy lives. If you have a full-time job or a family and home to take care of, you simply might not have it in you to cook a healthy meal from scratch at the end of the day.
However, eating healthy is crucial for maintaining our overall health, and the best way to eat healthy is to make your food yourself. This way, you control the portion size, know exactly what’s in your meal, and customize your meal plans according to your nutritional requirements.
And let’s not forget that cooking yourself can save you a lot of money.
Healthy Cooking Tips for Those on the Move
Cooking whole meals yourself might seem like a lot, especially if you’re constantly on the move, whether it’s due to work or kids. You might be tempted to just order a pizza instead and relax at the end of a long day.
But this can be harmful to your health in the long run. So, here are some tips that can help you prepare healthy meals and ditch your unhealthy eating habits.
- Freeze vegetables
Vegetables are the first thing that comes to mind when considering eating healthy. Every vegetable is rich in vitamins and can benefit you in many ways. For instance, asparagus is rich in many vitamins, such as Vitamin A, Vitamin K, Vitamin C, and potassium. Moreover, it is also excellent for your digestive system as it is high in fiber.
For instance, you might be wondering what to do with the leftover asparagus. Can you freeze asparagus to use later on for soup or stir-fries? The answer is yes. Vegetables are easily perishable, and who has the time for a grocery run daily?
So, the best solution is to cut vegetables, make portions and freeze them.
Freezing vegetables can save you a ton of time when cooking meals. It will save you a trip to the store and reduce your time in the kitchen as your vegetables will be prepped and ready to go.
However, it is necessary to learn which vegetables can be frozen directly and which need to be blanched first to maintain the goodness of the vegetables. On the other hand, if you don’t have the time to prep and freeze vegetables, you can buy bags of frozen vegetables from your grocery store too. But remember to check the expiration date beforehand.
- Create a menu for the week.
Deciding what to make is probably harder than actually cooking a meal. But you can save yourself the time and stress of deciding what to cook daily by creating a menu. If you can’t decide what to cook, you might just end up ordering takeout.
So, planning your meals can:
- Help reduce time.
- Allow you to devise a healthy option for every day of the week.
- Help you save money as you’ll know exactly what to buy at the store.
- Encourage you to try new recipes.
You can make a menu for the week whenever you have time. But doing it before your trip to the grocery store is recommended so you don’t forget anything.
- Put some time aside for meal prep.
Now that you’ve decided what to eat during the week, you can prep your meals beforehand. This can help you save time and effort and make healthy cooking much easier. But prepping your meals doesn’t necessarily mean cooking and freezing a complete meal. Meal prep can include freezing vegetables, creating a batch of sauce, or preparing any part of a meal and freezing it. Easy ground beef meal prep recipes are ideal to prepare if you are looking for something healthy and easy to make.
- Prefer healthy snacks
Snacking on the go is something many of us do. Whether it’s mindless munching or eating because you’re hungry but don’t have time for a proper meal, going about your day without a little snack here and there seems almost impossible.
In fact, according to recent research, almost 90% of adults admit to snacking every day. And these snack occurrences can range from 1.2 to 3 snacks per day.
Now, snacking isn’t necessarily bad. It can benefit you as it can help restore energy levels. But what you snack on matters. For instance, if a candy bar or a bag of crisps is your snack of choice, well, then that’s bad.
However, there are many things you can eat while on the move that will not only replenish your hunger but also give you lots of health benefits. For instance, you can use nuts, fruit, homemade granola, popcorn, or trail mix as healthy snacks.
- Avoid using packed foods.
Packed foods, such as pizza sauce, dips, and sauces, usually have a lot of sugar and salt. Apart from that, packed goods may also have preservatives or other harmful ingredients. So, avoiding such food items and creating a healthier version of your own is recommended. For instance, you can find numerous dip recipes on the internet.
Similarly, you can season your food with healthy options instead of store-bought sauces and seasoning. For instance, you can add a kick to your salads by squeezing a lemon or some vinegar. You can also add fresh herbs to your meals such as parsley and basil, for seasoning.
- Keep your pantry stocked.
Keeping your pantry properly stocked is key to healthy cooking. After all, how can you prepare a healthy meal if you don’t have the right ingredients? You can stock the pantry with long-lasting items such as onions, lentils, and seeds.
This way, you will always have something to work with, even if you haven’t gone grocery shopping. You can also buy such items in bulk and save money.
- Avoid deep frying food.
Deep frying or cooking your food in too much oil can harm your health. Such foods are high in saturated fats and can lead to heart diseases. So, it is necessary to avoid using too much oil in your food as much as possible.
On the other hand, you can steam, boil or grill your food as a healthy alternative. Steaming is mostly preferred as the best way to cook food. It helps cook vegetables and meat easily and allows you to retain most of the nutrients of your meal.
Healthy eating is crucial for your overall physical and mental health. It can boost immunity, strengthen your bones and muscles and reduce your chances of developing chronic illnesses. Although the benefits of healthy eating are well-known, our busy schedules hardly give us the time to make it a part of our lives.