Benefits of Meal Prepping
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“Why meal prep?” Meal prepping saves us time. By spending a little time preparing meals at the beginning of the week, we will spend less time cooking during the busy work and school week. Meal prepping also helps us to eat healthier. With pre-portioned meals made of healthy choices, we are able to follow healthy guidelines and stay on track.
Meal prepping is essentially making a “plan” of what you are going to eat each day. This can include all or one of your daily meals. There are many benefits that come along with meal planning such as eating more nutritious meals while saving time, energy and money. Time is saved by having a specific grocery list, cutting out the wandering through aisles, which sometimes can lead to a cart full of unessential items which can cost you greatly at the check-out, meal planning helps eliminate this. The meals that are prepared at home are often more nutritious than ones that might be consumed in a restaurant, adding another positive to meal planning.
Here are some steps to begin meal planning:
- Create ideas of what meals you would like to cook for the week. This will help you know what you are going to have so you won’t have to stress about deciding what to make.
- Look through your pantry, cabinets and refrigerator to use any goods that you may already have. Utilizing what you already have will help you save money and prevent you from buying duplicates.
- Prepare your grocery list with as much detail as you can. List exact ingredients for recipes you have chosen to make for your meals. By doing this, it allows you time to compare shop and gather coupons to help you save more.
- Plan time to prepare the meal. Determine what day is best for you to prep your food. Make sure you allot enough time and have enough space to prep. Find your groove by listening to music/ books, watching videos or just have the television on to determine what environment you prefer to prep in. It may be with helpers and it may not.
Planning your meals ahead means incorporating multiple meals by using leftovers (using leftover meat in a salad for example). All of the planning and prepping increases the likelihood of making healthy choices and reducing the amount of food wasted.