Meal Prep 101

'Making healthy choices for daily meals can be hard when you lead a busy life - and we all lead busy lives. Meal prepping can help you save time, money, and make healthier choices. Like anything it’s best to ease into the process instead of trying to do too much at once. Start off by preparing two or three meals for the week.

1.) Pick a day

PIck a day to prepare your meals. Some people choose Sundays because they don't have work and they perform other tasks like laundry, dishes, or cleaning. The day you choose can vary depending on your work schedule, you kids, other family members, or tasks. It is important to pick a day that works best for you and stick with it. Set a reminder on your phone or circle a day in your calendar.

2.) Pick the meals

If you’re preparing meals for your family it might be best to start off preparing dinner but if you’re single you may want to prep for breakfast or lunch. The decision is yours. Once you decide on which meals you’re going to prepare it is important to pick recipes that you think you will enjoy. If you make something you’re not looking forward to eating it can lead to feeling tempted to order in or hit the vending machine for a less healthy alternative. You also want to make sure your meals stick closely to MyPlate guidelines. Half your plate should be fruits and vegetables, a quarter should be grains, another quarter should be protein, and you should get one serving of dairy.

3.) Set up a grocery list according to your recipes

Nothing is worse than finding out your missing an ingredient when you’re in the middle of meal prepping. Make sure to write a detailed list of everything you need.

4.) Get to prepping!

Remember not to overwhelm yourself early in the process, starting small can lead to bigger changes down the road. Every step forward, even the small ones, is a step closer to your ultimate goal whether it’s weight loss, saving money, or reducing stress!