As we move forward in our new year of health and well-being, we must remember that planning ahead can be very helpful.  Although we often have the best intentions, our intentions don’t always match reality.  We get caught up with so much to do and not enough time to do it all! This applies to many scenarios in life, including our diets.

One way to prevent additional stress is to plan ahead! Have you ever heard the saying, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail”?  Planning is a sure way to avoid unknowns and be set on a solid path.

Let’s take a look at this approach and apply it to planning healthy meals for the week. Doing this can be very beneficial for your diet and stress level.  There are endless meal options that will fill your belly and body with nutrients.  Not to mention, meal planning also saves time and money when grocery shopping.

Set aside your time and your food containers to prepare your healthy meals for the week.  In need of ideas?  Switch up your salad game and throw the ingredients into a jar!  Tired of regular old veggies? Toss them with olive oil and some herbs and crisp them in the oven at 400°F. Eat them with your newly invented salad, or put them in an omelet. Use these ideas, or put your own twist on meal prep.  Write your meal ideas down and share them with others who come prepared for Monday!

Grab & Go Snacks

  • Keep hardboiled eggs in the refrigerator at home or at the office for a quick, high-protein snack.
  • Make oatmeal overnight! Soak oats in almond milk and throw in half of a banana, some chia seeds, and cinnamon for a healthy breakfast.
  • Take 10 minutes to cook quinoa, mix with broccoli, and other greens in chicken broth for a soup to warm your soul. Separate into individual bowls for a quick lunch.
  • You can never go wrong with fresh veggies or fruit! Bring pre-cut vegetables for an extra crunch during the day.

Tips to Avoid Sickness from Prepared Foods

  1. Refrigerate your lunch as soon as you arrive at work, or bring it in an insulated lunchbox.
  2. Keep your kitchen (and what’s in it) clean! Wash all utensils and dishes after every use.
  3. Avoid contamination by separating raw items and fresh items.
  4. Cook food to 140 degrees Fahrenheit and reheat food thoroughly, to 165 degrees Fahrenheit. Stir food while it is being reheated.

Sources:  Women’s Health Magazine, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, LifeWork Strategies EAP, and Adventist HealthCare. The Health Tip of the Week is for educational purposes only. For medical advice, consult your physician. Feel free to copy and distribute this health resource.