Easy Meal Planning for Busy People
Meal planning doesn’t have to be a daunting task, the reality is that planning ahead can be fun and is super important to achieving success on your Diet Center Program. The key to success is identifying and implementing a meal-planning strategy that works best for you. A goal with a plan always equals results.
Some people plan a month in advance, prepare meals in bulk and freeze labeled containers of pre-made lunch and dinner entrees. We like to call this the Sam’s Club or Costco method. Others choose to shop for fresh ingredients and prepare meals daily. What works for one person may not work for another; the goal is to find a personal meal-planning strategy that is the easiest for you. You will save time, money and stress by planning your meals in advance. Going into your week prepared helps you to perform the best on your Diet Center program. This also includes researching restaurants prior to visiting them to have your success plan laid out. You can enjoy foods you love and still lose weight each week!
Variety is the spice of life and key to your success. We want you to enjoy an assortment of varied, delicious food from all your favorite food groups so that you do not become bored or discouraged by eating the same food day in and day out. The Diet Center Program focuses on real food, allowing clients to integrate tons of different fruits, vegetables, meats, seafood, starches and fats into their meal plans. Browse our Facebook Page (Diet Center Midsouth) and Recipe Books at the center to find recipes that you will love like Spinach Lasagne, Flatbread Pizza, Nachos, Stuffed Peppers, Creamy Chicken Alfredo, Key Lime Pie and many more!
Many people stick to a grocery budget and are constantly on the lookout for discounts and coupons for food purchases. Check your local grocer’s website as well as coupon apps like Ibotta, where you can receive money back on the purchase of healthy items like milk, eggs, produce and more! Living and eating healthy can be very economical if you plan ahead and strategize a coupon-clipping tactic. Have fun!
Make a Menu and Grocery List
When you plan your menu for the week, you will be setting yourself up for weight loss success. Complete your food journal for the week and shop for the necessary ingredients to prepare all of your meals. This ensures you are staying accountable to your food plan and not placing extraneous items into your grocery cart. Your Diet Center Counselor will be glad to assist with meal planning and prep ideas.
Double your recipes at dinner and you will have enough to take for lunch the next day or have leftovers for dinner on a busy night. If you have a tried-and-true recipe, you can even triple or quadruple it and freeze enough for a week’s worth of healthy meals for the whole family!
Organize Your Refrigerator (And Freezer!)
Organize the items in your refrigerator so you know exactly where everything is when preparing meals. Having your refrigerator organized and having healthy snacks at your fingertips makes it easy to avoid unhealthy snacks and allows you to concentrate on mindful eating.
Cook Perishable Items First
If you have purchased perishable items prepare them early in the week to avoid wasting food. Incorporate additional raw vegetables as snacks or make a medley of fruit for breakfast to keep these items from spoiling.
On-the-Go Meals and Snacks
If your weeks are busy with meetings, travel, kids’ sports or social activities, consider meals you and your family can grab on the go. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and skipping it will stall your weight-loss. Make healthy grab-and-go items ahead of the time, like egg muffins or mason jar salads. Have Diet Center snacks on hand for convenient high-protein smoothies, delicious bars or savory snacks. If you are planning a vacation or traveling for work, stock up on meal replacements to have easy to prepare high-protein meals with you wherever you go!
Set it and Forget It
Consider purchasing or (wiping the dust off) a slow cooker or crockpot. Toss your favorite healthy ingredients inside in the morning, leave it all day and come home to the enticing aroma of a delicious home-cooked meal.
Remember Your Seven Little P’s
Prior Proper Planning, Preparing and Packing Promotes Progress!
Creating and sticking to a meal-planning strategy will not only help alleviate stress, it will save you time and money, set you up for optimal weight loss results as well as teach you healthier habits for long term success. On your next Success visit into the center, chat with your Diet Center Counselor for even more ideas.
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