When you’re balancing work, kids, exercise, traffic, hobbies and trying to squeeze in some down time, setting aside 45 minutes to make a healthy meal can seem like a big ask.
It’s true, healthy eating does take a bit of time and planning, so we’ve put together a few tips to make it easier to eat healthy when you’re on-the-go.
Trust us, your body will thank you for the extra effort.
1. Find some grab-and-go foods that can work for you
In an ideal world it would be great to enjoy home-cooked food at every meal and only cook with fresh ingredients prepped at home, but this isn’t always possible.
On rushed days, a boiled egg, some roasted nuts, a smoothie or a shake can be a delicious healthy lunch and things like pre-chopped frozen veggies can save you some time on dinner prep.
2. When you do have time, use it
On the days when you do have some time to cook, try double or triple the recipe and freeze the extras. Keep a stock of 2 or 3 of these frozen meals to heat up on the days when you don’t have time or energy to cook a meal from scratch.
3. Make some food BFFs
Friends are always there for you when you need them most. Have 3 healthy go-to recipes such as salads and stir-frys that are easy to whip up when you’re pressed for time. You can do a lot with a handful of ingredients and 20 minutes to spare.
4. Remember that quick & easy does not have to mean boring
Plenty of easy meals can be made delicious by adding some spices, sauces or a few extra ingredients. Sprinkle a bit of cheese onto your omlette, add a spicy sauce to your stir-fry, or experiment with unexpected ingredients – strawberry salad anyone?
5. Learn to love leftovers
Dinner leftovers are a quick and easy lunch the next day. If you’re cooking a healthy dinner, make a little bit extra for tomorrow.
6. Start a foodpool. It’s like a carpool, but for food.
Start a meal sharing group with your friends. Agree to take turns cooking and sharing a healthy meal for the whole group. Get your neighbours involved and alternate cooking dinners, or take turns bringing a healthy lunch to share with your colleagues.
Use meal times as family and friend bonding time. Make family dinners a habit or host a dinner party and spend some extra time with friends.
8. Use services designed for convenience
Many food stores offer online shopping with an option for delivery. If you don’t have time to get to the shops for healthy ingredients, order what you need from wherever you are.
9. Save yourself from yourself
Try to stock your fridge and cupboards with healthy foods only. If you’ve got easy access to unhealthy foods, it’s much more tempting to grab them when you’re in a hurry.
10. Get to know the menu at your favourite take away place
Sometimes getting takeout after a long day is easier, but that doesn’t mean you have to eat unhealthy food. Find some healthy options on the menu at your favourite take away place and opt for those if you have to get takeout.
Remember that a healthy diet helps our bodies function at their best and prevent illness and fatigue which can slow us down. By taking some time to look after your eating, you’ll actually be saving yourself some time in the long run.