meal prep

Amazing Healthy Meal Prep Ideas

March 19. 2021

After just getting home from a long and probably stressful day of work, the last thing a lot of us want to do is spend an hour or so making dinner. We’d instead go for a walk, relax and sip some tea, or spend time with our spouses or pets! A lot of us also find ourselves trying to keep up with some diet these days. We aim to give out some of the best healthy meal prep to help you become the best version of yourself.

Diets don’t have to be giant, scary monsters that intimidate you into only eating a carrot and a cube of cheese every few hours. Beginning a diet should be something that we look forward to! But a lot of us tend to think more about the kinds of foods we can’t eat, when we should be looking at all of the fantastic, healthy foods we have access to. Perhaps one of the best ways to start (and maintain) a healthy diet is by creating a meal prep plan.

Healthy meal prep ideas are great ways to follow through with your plans to get fitter and eat better while also allowing yourself more time throughout the week to focus on cultivating that healthy lifestyle. Weight loss clinic Chicago programs combined with their healthy meal prep tips are fantastic ways to keep the momentum going throughout your busy week. 

How Meal Prep and Diets Work Together

The main reason why many people start a diet in the first place is that they want to lose weight. People believe that diets are one-and-done kinds of situations where they can starve themselves, lose weight, and then go back to eating and living the way they were before. What they don’t realize is that dieting takes commitment and responsibility. 

Starting a healthy meal prep routine is a great way to establish a healthy habit and keep accountability for your diet and the food you eat. If meal prepping is your way of losing weight, that’s fantastic, but it’s also about creating a healthy lifestyle and mindset about your own body.

Essentially, starting a clean-eating diet is a reset button for your digestive system and allows you to cut out foods that might be causing inflammation, gut disruption, unhealthy psychological effects, and hormone imbalance. Not only that, but many people who live eating a healthy diet experience increased energy, enhanced mood, improved sleep, sharper mental focus, and clearer skin.

If you want to take on a healthy diet fully, many diet plans out there suggest eliminating what are called legumes, and if you’re like me, people say the word legumes, and you’re lost. Here’s a quick list of some popular legumes that typical diets won’t allow:

  • Peas, snow peas, green peas, snap peas, split peas, black-eyed peas
  • Lentils
  • Soybeans, black beans, kidney beans, lima beans
  • Chickpeas/Garbanzo beans (yes, sadly, that means no hummus)
  • Peanuts & soy nuts

To maximize the benefits of a healthy meal prep plan, you need to know what kinds of foods are acceptable. This will make your healthy meal prep ideas even more straightforward and will save you time at the grocery store, too. This diet plan is all about making your body happy by feeding it foods that it can efficiently process and use – all the good stuff.

Approved Healthy Meal Prep Ideas

The idea of starting a healthy meal prep plan is to create simple but still eat what you like. Beginning a diet makes people think that they are limited to salad and tofu – but in reality, you can eat SO much good food! Here are some great healthy meal prep ideas for each meal of the day, even snacks and dessert!

Breakfast: 

  • Eggs (your new best friends)
  • Tomatoes
  • Avocadoes
  • Sausage – pork, chicken, or turkey
  • Bacon – pork or turkey
  • Breakfast ham
  • Spinach
  • Potatoes and sweet potatoes
  • Omelets with all of the above!
  • All fruits are encouraged

Snacks:

  • All the vegetables you want
  • Nuts – avoid those legumes we shared earlier if you decide to cut them out
  • More fruit!
  • Chickpea hummus (if you don’t eliminate legumes)
  • Avocado hummus
  • Coconut milk yogurt
  • Chia pudding
  • Cauliflower hummus
  • Dark chocolate chips

Lunch & Dinner:

  • Meats of any kind – fish, red meat, poultry, pork
  • More veggies!
  • Everything-but-the-kitchen-sink salad – if you have salad, make sure it’s full of yummy veggies, nuts, fruits and that the dressing follows one of these healthy dressing options

As you would with any meal prep plan, you want to make sure you take the necessary steps to have prepped meals entirely. For instance, in the first few weeks or months, you might only prep dinners, then as you feel more comfortable and want to take on more, you can prep other meals. As you prep more, you might need to add some more storage containers and seasonings to your shopping list, which means you’re doing it right!

Why Should I Meal Prep?

Meal prepping saves time and eventually money because you won’t be eating out as often. Taking an hour or two on a Sunday to prepare the meals that you want throughout the week and keeping them organized in the refrigerator saves you at least an hour every weekday – and that’s just if you prep dinner.  

Waking up and not having to rush to make breakfast and actually enjoying your lunch instead of quickly gobbling up every bite must be part of your daily self care routine. Extra time in the morning means more time for morning yoga flow or meditation. More time at lunch gives you that reprieve from work that you desperately need in the middle of the day. And with that extra hour after work, you can dedicate more time to fully taking on and building a healthy lifestyle by exercising or training. 

All in all, meal prepping is the right answer for most people for so many reasons! A healthy lifestyle means embracing new habits for not only the body but the mind and spirit, too. Taking the time to create some healthy meal prep ideas to have more time throughout the day where you don’t have to worry about what you are going to eat is a fantastic way to embrace that mind, body, spirit approach to healthy living. 

Nurse Walton

Author

Nurse Walton

Born and raised in Chicago, IL, Chanay received her Practical Nurse licensure and went to work in clinical specialties such as Home Health, Assisted Living, Long-Term Care and Dialysis Centers. Through this work, she realized the importance of diet, nutrition and weight loss among her patients. This led her to open A Better Weigh, Inc. Medical Weight Loss Center in 2009.

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