Working out may not be enough for people in Mt. Airy, who want to be healthier and shed a few extra pounds. You can’t out exercise a bad diet, so eating healthy is a must if you want to see the best results. It’s easier if you meal plan. No matter how many hours you workout, if you’re eating more calories than you burn, you’ll gain weight. Exercise makes it easier to burn calories. It tones the muscles and boosts your metabolism. However, if you’re eating a gallon of ice cream, several orders of burgers and fries and endless cookies, you won’t be able to burn enough calories and will gain weight, plus end up unhealthy.
What exactly is meal planning?
It’s the process where you not only plan meals ahead, but also cook them ahead so no matter how rushed the day, all you have to do is heat and serve. Meal planning ensures you have a balanced diet in the appropriate portion size. It’s planning the meal one day and making a grocery list, shopping another day and doing prep over the weekend or on your less busy days, like the weekend. Then you simply pack and refrigerate or freeze for the rest of the week, sometimes making meals for the freezer for future weeks.
How does meal planning help weight loss or make you healthier.
If you’re snacking on food all day long, you’re probably eating more junk food than not. Junk food is always ready, since you don’t have to cook a bag of chips or churn your own ice cream. When you plan meals, you consider the calories, macronutrients and micronutrients. You make sure you have healthy snacks ready for those times you want something to nibble. If you’re like most people, you’re simply exhausted at the end of the day and are tempted to stop at a drive-through for dinner. If you know you have food ready to heat and serve at home, that temptation fades quickly.
You’ll be more likely to eat the proper serving size and less likely to clean up the last bit by eating it.
People are often creatures of habit and one of those habits may be eating the last bit of food left in the bowl, even if it’s the two serving sizes. They’re also more apt to overestimate exactly what a serving size is. When you meal plan, you pack your food in the actual serving size, whether it’s a cup of rice or a palm size cut of meat. Nibbling your way through cooking dinner isn’t an option. There’s no leftover chicken when you meal plan, because it was already used to make another main dish for another day.
- You’ll cut down on the leftovers you throw away. Pitching those mystery dishes in the back of the refrigerator is a tradition in many people’s kitchens. When you meal plan, you’ll use leftovers in other dishes.
- When you shop for the ingredients for the week, do it after you have eaten. You’re less likely to make impulse purchases of sweet treats and junk food.
- You can save money by meal planning. Not only are you using all the food you purchase with fewer leftovers, but you can also plan around seasonal fruits and vegetables and take advantage of sales.
- When you make food ahead, you can double the recipe and freeze the extra for a future week. It can help when your week is so packed you can’t plan meals or when you have unexpected company. It’s like having money in the bank for an emergency.
For more information, contact us today at Urban Athlete