Indulge-LESS This Holiday Season

I don’t totally mean to be a buzz kill, but we need to talk about over-indulging.  Yes, I know, it’s right smack dab in the holiday season, which is exactly why we need to be talking about it.  The time between Halloween and New Year’s Day is a very challenging time indeed—a time when bellies are full and health habits go to die.  It’s the time of the year when people say, “To heck with it!  I’ll get back on track in January.”  But that attitude ensures that the cycle of yo-yo dieting will continue, and no one really wants to live like that.

A problem of pollution
It’s important to identify the problem if you’re going to be successful.  You might think the problem is your willpower, but I would argue that it’s just a matter of increased environmental pollution and pressure (Holiday celebrations galore).  Scientist Brian Wansink would say that most of our food-related decisions are unconscious and in response to environmental cues. If candy is lying out in plain sight, you’ll eat more of it than if it’s hidden away in a co-workers drawer.  Out of sight, out of mind.   Just the simple act of putting food away is a barrier that results in less calories eaten.  So the problem with the holiday season is that there’s an increase in food cues, which is to say that the environment is polluted.  It’s important to understand that the brain is wired for pleasure.  We shouldn’t be surprised that the primitive parts of our brains cause us to seek out high-fat, high-sugar, hyper-palatable foods.  At one time, this was advantageous for survival.  But now, instead of the relative risk of food scarcity, we have the opposite problem of food abundance.  And this isn’t just any food.  This is food that has been engineered to be high-calorie and highly rewarding.  Brownies, cookies, cakes—they all provide an intensely pleasurable experience and the brain remembers that for next time (hence the bad habits)

   The frontal lobe
Again, we shouldn’t be surprised that our brains drive us to eat junk food.  Armed with that information, the next logical question is:  how do we change our response?  The answer is simple, but the practice requires effort.  First, decide that you want to do it.  At some point you have to become so frustrated that you are motivated to change.  But then we must maintain that motivation and commitment to change.  Crowd out the junk food with natural, whole foods that are low in sugar and low in calories.  Apply the 80/20 rule.  80% real food and 20% reserved for your favorites.

The problem with portions
The problem is not the problem you think.  It’s not the gluten, it’s not the grains, and to some extent, it’s not even about the junk food.  The problem is the amount.  It’s the calories and the fact that most Americans are just eating too much of everything.  Each person’s body is designed to run on a certain amount of energy (calories).  When we consume too many calories, this puts a metabolic stress on the body which ultimately leads to chronic disease and inflammation.  It seems so old-fashioned and unpopular to say, but the primary issue to target for weight loss is the calories and portions.

  And here we are full-circle, right smack dab in the middle of the holiday season.  How about you try something new this year?  How about you say NO to dieting and instead make the decision to indulge less—as in less amount and less often?  Bulk up on vegetables, roasted or raw, perhaps.  Make a ¼ of your plate a lean protein and then reserve the other ¼ of your plate for your favorite starchy foods or desserts?  And remember, it’s just one meal!  Practice Mindful Eating and focus on enjoying the company of friends and family.

Health goals?  Don’t wait until January!  We have a variety of programs and services to help you reach your goals.

Nutrition Solutions

 

Non-Scale Victories

Let’s talk about “the scale.”  The scale is what most people use to measure their weight, and that makes sense.  In the basic sense, a scale measures a person’s mass, which is to say, a person’s weight due to the gravitational forces on earth.  But instead of measuring our health in Newton’s, we measure our health in terms of pounds or kilograms.  When I work with clients, their primary goal is to lose weight.  These clients come from a wide variety of backgrounds, but in our practice, they are all united in this fight against weight.

Weight gain is common.  Losing weight is common.  What is uncommon is maintaining a healthy weight for the course of a person’s life, or losing weight (if overweight) and keeping it off indefinitely.  Unfortunately, weight regain is the norm and most clients I work with would tell you that they know HOW to lose weight, but that they can’t seem to keep it off.  This is not a personal moral failure on their part.  People who struggle with weight must battle on many fronts and they are some of the most courageous people I know.  Why?  Because society tells them that they are failures, but somehow, they find the strength to come up for one more fight.

The scale

I don’t have problems with using the scale as part of the assessment process.  Usually, there’s a “sweet” spot for people—a small range in weight (pounds or kilos)  in which they will function at their best.  It is common for weight to fluctuate within a few pounds, but when weight creeps, or jumps up too quickly, then that person will know that something is off balance.  Weighing oneself on a regularly basis is a useful tool for most, but again, it’s not the only tool.  Certainly, it’s not the best measurement of a person’s health.

Body composition

A better tool to measure weight is a body composition analyzer.  In our practice, we always test body composition.  This is a better assessment tool than a common scale because not only does it tell the weight, but more importantly, it tells what that weight consists of.  How much muscle mass or “lean” mass does this person have vs fat?  How hydrated are they?  If they’ve lost weight, did they lose precious muscle?  If they’ve maintained weight, did they gain muscle mass?  This helps us to go a little deeper to get at the root of what people want.  People say that they want to lose weight, but technically what they mean is that they want to lose body fat.

But even beyond numbers, the goals behind the numbers are much more personal.  I’ve had clients tell me that they want to be able to get on the floor and play with their kid, or be able to tie their shoes.  Some people just want to “look” better and feel better in their clothes, but behind every weight loss goal number is the REAL reason they are here.  They want to have life and have it abundantly.  This is why weight loss is a journey, and not just some finish line.

So what are your non-scale victories? 

If you’re looking to the scale every week and every year for confirmation that you’re on track, you will, at times, be very disappointed.  I was talking with a lady who said that she gave up sugar, refined white flour and started exercising regularly (and eating right).  She did this for nearly a year and felt amazing, but she only lost 5# and so she quit.  I then asked her, “but how did you feel?”  She responded, emphatically, “Amazing.”  Well, there you go.  And that’s where relying on the scale can go wrong.

Off the top of my head, I can list several benefits of weight loss that would be noticeable without ever stepping on a scale and here they are:

  • Improved energy
  • Better sleep
  • Less inflammation
  • Less Pain
  • Improved mood
  • Decreased anxiety and depression
  • Better mobility and flexibility
  • Feeling empowered
  • Radiating skin

If I had more time, the list could go on.  I would like to reinforce that weight loss is not just about the numbers.  Motivation to sustain health habits comes from feeling it from within.  Weight loss is deeply personal and it’s imperative to be able to congratulate yourself for non-scale victories along the way.  The non-scale victories will be the fuel that ignites your passion to keep. Moving. Forward.  One step at a time.

For information about our services and programs, visit our website or call us at 864 676-1248

 

Have a Healthy Holiday

  For many, Halloween marks the start of a challenging season for weight management.  But with the right planning, you won’t fall into the same old traps. Here are some practical strategies to help keep you focused. Many of these strategies have been tested by scientist and expert Brian Wansink who runs the Cornell University’s Food and Brand Lab. He is also the author of Mindless Eating and Slim by Design, which I highly recommend reading if you are trying to lose weight. Visit his website here.

Strategies to help you avoid holiday weight gain:

  • Survey, then change your environment. Set yourself up for success by keeping junk food out of sight and out of mind. Clear the home and work environment, and if that’s not an option, distance yourself as much as possible from the polluted environment (i.e., stay out of the work break room)
  • Don’t arrive to parties famished. Have a meal or light snack ahead of time so you won’t be physically hungry
  • Wear your best belt or fitted clothes
  • Fill up on crudités and vegetables (fiber)
  • Don’t drink your calories. Sparkling water, unsweet tea and zero calorie, zero sugar beverages only
  • Eat from a smaller plate. This has a profound psychological effect causing you to eat less
  • Have some protein! Lean proteins such as boiled shrimp or grilled chicken help with satiety
  • Don’t hang around the buffet table. Take the conversation in another room. Better yet, get outside or take a walk
  • Distract your hands by drinking unsweet tea, seltzer water or club soda.
  • Chew gum
  • Just say no and practice being assertive

Finally, have the right mindset. What are your intentions when you attend parties and gatherings? Ultimately, each person is unique in regard to their goals and motivations. Attitude and “how” you eat is almost more important that “what” you will eat. If you’re intention is to lose weight during the holidays, that’s great. If you are dedicated and committed to this goal, you WILL lose weight during the holidays. If your goal is to maintain weight during the holidays, that is also noble. If you stay focused, you will avoid the holiday weight trap that so many Americans fall into.  Above all, stay mindful and grateful.

 

Nutrition Science 101

The study of Nutrition is a science; The application of nutrition is an art.  The wonderful thing about nutrition is that eating right for your body doesn’t require any special knowledge or training.  Humans have an intuitive ability to know what their body needs, and yet, most of us aren’t listening.  Many people tend to be obsessed with fad diets and nutrition facts, and yet lack an overall appreciation or understanding of the affects that whole foods have on their health.  They may “major in the minors” when it comes to nutrition and “miss the forest for the trees.”  An example might be avoiding gluten, while neglecting areas such as over-consumption of foods and physical inactivity.  Four major areas to investigate with weight loss are nutrition, exercise, stress and sleep, but let’s start with a super basic review of nutrition.

Calories

  • In human nutrition, calories are needed by the body to do work
  • Individual needs vary depending on age, sex, size, genetics and activity levels
  • They are neither bad, nor good, but simply a way of measuring the amount of energy a food provides us

Calorie expenditure is divided between resting metabolic rate, thermic effect of foods (energy used for the digestion of food), non-exercise activity and exercise. Our muscles and organs are the biggest consumers of calories at rest.

Macronutrients

  • Nutrients that provide calories or energy
  • Nutrients are substances needed for growth, metabolism, and for other body functions
  • Needed in large amounts

Carbohydrates*Generally, should comprise ~45-65% of daily caloric intake. Provide 4 calories/gm. Slow carbs are low-glycemic load and fast carbs are high-glycemic load.

ProteinGenerally, should comprise ~20-30% of daily caloric intake. Provide 4 calories/gm. 

FatGenerally, should comprise ~15-30%. Provide 9 calories/gm. Saturated fats are typically found in animal products, whereas unsaturated fats are primarily sourced from plants.

Phytochemicals

Phytochemicals are naturally occurring chemicals that provide plants with color, odor and flavor. They contribute greatly to our health by fighting inflammation, free radical damage and they also help to balance our hormones.

Right now many individuals are starting to understand that a calorie is not a calorie.  In fact, different foods have different effects on the body and with genetic testing more widely available, we know that no two people respond to the same diet in the same way.  That’s why it’s important to get a nutrition plan specifically tailored for you.  If you are interested in working with a registered dietitian who can write a nutrition plan for you, click here.  Dietitians are uniquely qualified to prescribe specific nutrient recommendations and it can be highly worth your time.

 

 

Your Health and Termites

Do you have termite protection for your house? I remember the first conversation I had about termite prevention in my newly purchased home.  I was dismissive of the idea of paying someone hundreds of dollars every year to prevent the possible risk of termite damage.  It was at a time when I was already peeved about the unexpected costs that go along with owning a home.  I had always been a renter—never had to purchase things like garden tools, lawnmowers and weed eaters.  The cost quickly added up.  Fast forward 3 years when we were getting ready to purchase our new (old) home in the city, the inspection came back with the news that there was termite damage to the structure of the house.  It was estimated to cost $10,000 to repair the damage.  Fortunately, the seller picked up the tab, but you can believe that every year after I have gladly payed the termite company to provide routine preventive treatments.  Why? Because now I am armed with the knowledge that these tiny little termites can do significant amounts of damage over time.  Not to mention, I regularly see them around in my yard.  The thing about termites is that often you don’t see them and you certainly don’t see the silent damage that they are doing.  Little by little, and slowly over time, they can eat away underneath the surface.  It’s not uncommon for the façade of the structure to look completely normal, meanwhile the core of the foundation is rotted.

This is a health blog so where am I going with this?  What if I told you that the health habits you have today are paving the road for the health (or disease) you will have in the future.  Perhaps right now you’re putting off making changes because you seem healthy.  You might even have a clean bill of health from the doctor because he or she said your labs look fine, but the problem is that chronic diseases often develop over years and decades.  The silent damage is low-grade chronic inflammation that over time develops into a debilitating chronic illness.  At the golden time of retirement—when you are supposed to be having the time of your life—you’re instead spending your time and money on healthcare, or as I sometimes refer to as sick care.

  Hypertension is known as the silent killer.  According to the CDC, 1 in 3 Americans has high blood pressure and only about half of them know it and have it under control. The World Health Organization lists high blood pressure as the most important preventable cause of heart disease and stroke worldwide.  I spend a lot of time listening to and coaching clients who want to achieve a higher level of health.  For every client I DO get to talk with, there are a hundred others that I DON’T get to talk with.  There’s a general vibe in our culture where we assume a person’s health is fine until there is some obvious sign.  It’s like not changing the oil in your car for a 100,000 miles and assuming it’s fine because the check engine light hasn’t come on.  Meanwhile, there’s been a strange knocking sound coming from under the hood for a few months now.

So poor health choices are like termites.  It’s hard to convince yourself to invest in yourself because you seem “fine.”  In reality, the termites—the metabolic stress, inflammation and toxins are always there, but they are invisible.  If it’s invisible, then what are the signs that health troubles are on the way?

  • Fatigue
  • Stress
  • Weight gain/obesity
  • Sleep apnea
  • Reflux
  • High blood pressure
  • High blood sugar
  • Insulin resistance (which buy the way doctor’s don’t routinely test this)
  • Depression
  • Being told you need medications to treat any of the above

Other signs are less obvious and more nuanced.  I encourage my clients to think of a time when they were at their healthiest “sweet spot.”  What was that like?  How did you feel and what were you doing?  How far have you strayed from that person?  I’m not going to sugar coat it:  Making and developing new health habits is HARD.  It’s mostly hard because no one can tell you exactly how to do it and there’s a lot of trial and error.  But I can say from personal experience that the payoff is worth the effort.  I would encourage you to tune in and listen to your body.  It’s always talking, usually letting you know when things are off balance.  Don’t wait until it’s too late.  Do something to change the trajectory now!

Don’t go at alone!  We all need to make changes in a supportive environment.  We love to partner with people just like you so please reach out.  http://www.nutritionsolutionsonline.com/nutrition-coaching/

It’s Not About The Diet. 

When it comes down to it, there’s not one special diet that will produce lasting weight loss for every person.  Many different nutritional approaches can work, assuming the person can stick with it.  A person should consider things like stress, cooking abilities, reasons for changing and methods of sustaining the changes. Why have you been unsuccessful at changing in the past? Ultimately, your success will come from changing habits and that happens when you have a clear understanding of the problems, and you strive for creative solutions to those problems. Creativity is a highly under-appreciated skill when it comes to weight loss. Challenges will always be there and simple cookie cutter approaches won’t work. You can “glean” strategies from popular diets, but you have to make it your own. Take what works and leave the rest.

Be a good scientist 
When it comes to weight loss, what no one will tell you is that there’s a lot of experimentation with finding the right formula for success. We all would like to believe that A + B = C.  Eat less, exercise more and you will lose weight. Well, yes.  But no. Yes, you must maintain an energy deficit to lose weight, but HOW exactly you accomplish this is where the experimentation comes into play.  Experiment with calories, macros, meal timing and exercise.  Don’t leave out strategies for sleep and stress reduction which play a major role in weight management.

Is it worth it?
Ultimately, the effort you put into changing existing habits must be worth it, which is to say, it must be rewarding. Make sure you carefully and continuously evaluate the pros and cons of adopting the desired change.  If you commit to daily exercise, for example, you must connect with the rewards in order for you to stick with it. Does this new behavior produce more energy? Better sleep? Improved mood? You may say you want to eat “right” and exercise, but the brain sees through your vain attempts. In order for the new behavior to stick, your brain must be rewarded for it.  If there is a powerful reward to your new behavior, your brain will commit that to memory so you can quickly remember it for next time. The caveat: your brain loves instant gratification. Make sure your rewards are thought out.

The next time you’re tempted to try the next popular diet, ask yourself if a new diet is really what you need.  More likely, you need to go deeper and recall what strategies did or did not work in the past.  You don’t need another diet to follow. You need to find your own diet to follow.

Support yourself with the best!  We would love the opportunity to partner with you on your journey.  Schedule a time to speak with one of our coaches today!

Nutrition Solutions

Nutrition Solutions Weight Loss

864 676-1248

 

Stupid Easy Meal Planning

What’s the secret to meal planning?  The secret is that there is no secret.  You just do it.  MEAL. PLAN. EVERY. DAY.  There’s nothing “sexy” about it, but there are a few tricks to save you time. Eventually, you will get to the point where meal prep is just another chore like bathing or brushing your teeth (Am I inspiring you yet!)

IS MEAL PLANNING RIGHT FOR YOU?
You have to get to the point where you are sick and tired of being sick and tired.  The right nutrition will go a long way to improving your energy and health.  Great nutrition nourishes and heals the body.

HERE’S SOME TIPS TO SAVE YOU TIME:

  • Limit Variety During The Week To Save Time And Money. This means the core of what you eat everyday remains the same, but you can make changes to the seasonings or sides.  Core items in my diet include eggs, egg whites, Wild Alaska Salmon, Cod, Chunk Light Tuna and Tempeh.  To this protein base, I add vegetables and I usually stick to spinach, kale, riced Cauliflower and Green Beans.  Occasionally I have ½ of a baked sweet potato or homemade keto bread.  Snacks include low-fat plain yogurt, berries and a nut butter, a poached egg or a protein bar.  Weekends are fairly similar, but I may have something a little more savory for dinner.
  • Prep And Cook In Bulk On The Weekends.(or your least busy day). If Sunday is your meal prep day, then you’ll have to make sure your grocery shopping is done by the day before.  For me, this means I have to put the frozen fish in the refrigerator on Friday or Saturday in order for it to be thawed.
  • Have The Right Tools For The Right Job. You’ll need make sure your kitchen tools are easily accessible.  Tools that I use each week include a vegetable steamer, a toaster oven, an iron skillet, a large skillet, a baking stone, a Nutribullet and of course, a coffee maker.  Everything I use is stored strategically close to my cooking area.  In addition to cookware, an often neglected aspect of meal prep is Tupperware and a large insulated lunch bag.  Remember, you’ll be cooking anywhere from 2-5 servings to last you throughout the week and most of your meals won’t be eaten at home.  You’ll have to find a system that works for you.  For me this means I cook on Sundays and Tuesday evenings since I work Monday through Thursday.
  • Know your grocery store and get in and get out.Stick to your grocery list and try to avoid impulse purchases.  If you can limit variety, then your grocery shopping experience will be quick and easy because you’ll be eating the same core foods each week.  This recommendation is not a popular one, but unless you have extra time to plan, purchase and prepare a new menu each week, it’s really your best option.  The number one reason people don’t prepare their own meals is because of perceived lack of time.

SOME FINAL POINTERS—
The core of a healthy eating plan is one that emphasizes whole foods in their mostly natural state.  It should be low in added sugars, refined carbohydrates and saturated fat.  Feel free to go sugar-free, but don’t replace it with artificial sweeteners.  It’s worth mentioning that your meal plan should also be calorically balanced with the appropriate macro and micronutrients for your individual needs.

Don’t have time to cook?  No problem. Let our Chef James prepare your meals.  Click here to order chef meals prepared daily.  Order them just the way you like.  We’re the only company locally that has meals created by a dietitian and a chef.  That means our meals are perfectly portions in calories and macro balanced. http://www.nutritionsolutionsonline.com/ordermeals/

Weight Loss? YOU First!

Losing weight requires a tremendous amount of time and effort. Nutrition, exercise, sleep and stress must all be considered when starting your weight loss journey, however, diets and exercise alone rarely seem to get at the root of the problem.  Weight regain is common.  Let’s be clear: a person is not defined by the number on a scale. Weight gain is almost always the result of some deeper issue–a sign that things are off balance. Weight gain is a symptom, and so the focus of treatment needs to go after the root causes. 

Weight gain can be a result of biological factors, definitely, but so often weight gain is the result of abuse, trauma, stress, emotional neglect or a combination of these. For women, weight gain can happen when they neglect to put themselves first.  Let’s face it: in our society, women are implicitly told that they should put everyone’s needs ahead of their own. It sounds nice and lovely, but in the end, no one wins.  We need to get rid of this idea that taking time for yourself is selfish. For the women out there: taking time for yourself isn’t just a nice idea, it’s imperative if you want to be an effective mother, sister, spouse, friend, leader in your community. 

SELF CARE.  Day after day, I spend my time pleading women to take time for themselves. Their nutrition and health is suffering, and instead of us having a discussion about nutrition, we’re talking about everything BUT nutrition.  It’s about nutrition and exercise, sure. But more importantly it’s about making sure that you are emotionally being nurtured and cared for yourself.  When you are nurtured and in a state of balance and harmony, it overflows to your daily habits. You find yourself more loving, patient and kind. And weight loss results? That happens because you have the time and energy available to eat well and exercise.  Do you see how it’s all connected? Do you see how it’s impossible to have weight loss stick without self care?  Weight loss struggles almost always come back to self-care.

I should mention that I don’t set weight loss goals for clients, they do.  I try to encourage them to think about a time when they felt the best, which tends to be difficult for many people.  At the root, it’s not about a number on a scale.  It’s about health and being free to live the best version of themselves.  For many, that does mean weight loss results, but again, I think the weight loss is a result of digging deeper.  Weight loss is what happens as a result.

We know the weight loss journey feels lonely and hard.  That’s why we love providing support and encouragement. If you are ready and motivated to make changes, please reach out to us. We’d love to work with you.

Nutrition Solutions Weight Loss

Building Your Weight Loss Team

      So you’ve decided you want to lose weight. You’re probably getting prepared on the right nutrition and exercise strategies, but have you considered that you may need some help? My guess is probably not. It’s not your fault. It’s been drilled into your head that weight loss is just a matter of calories in and calories out.  Losing weight is nothing more than eating less than you’re burning. So get to it!

Ok, no more joking. Anyone who has struggled with maintaining their “sweet spot” knows that it’s not that simple.  Obesity is a complex, chronic disease. Even when a person loses weight, weight regain is common. I believe there’s a magic ingredient that is missing from most weight loss plans. It’s called support. Weight loss cannot be a solo adventure. It’s an arduous journey, uphill, against the wind. Now imagine you had a trail partner, or 3. More support means more hands and feet to carry the load and perhaps you can even enjoy each other’s company along the way.  That’s a good picture of the weight loss journey–a team of individuals with the same goal in mind.

Obesogenic Environment
Obesa-what? Obesogenic environment simply is a term to describe the western culture that promotes poor food choices and sedentary behavior.  On my lunch break today, I picked up a few produce items from the grocery store. I don’t often look at the receipt, but this time I did. One apple, organic: $1.02. My immediate thought was, “I could have bought a hamburger for that price!” Don’t get me wrong. I have no desire to feast on a greasy food-like meat muffin that probably has more chemicals than nutrients, but it highlighted to me a major problem in our world. We are incentivized to eat junk food–it’s convenient and cheap.  No wonder people are struggling.

A Better Way
Yes, better nutrition and exercise habits must occur–no question about that, however, for these habits to stick, it must be done in the context of a supportive environment.  If  you have decided to stop weight gain in its tracks, enlist the help of your coworkers, neighbors, family and friends. Out with the old and in with the new!  Make time for hanging out with people who have the habits you want.  Their success will rub off on you.  Likewise, the opposite is true. If you’re hanging out with the same people that contributed to your weight gain, it will be difficult to move ahead.  Sure, it’s impossible to get away from all negative influences (apart from leaving the planet), but you can be sure to make time for you.  And you are worth it.  Give us a call for professional support.

www.nutritionsolutionsonline.com

676-1248

The Weight Loss Strategy No One Is Talking About

MEAL PLANNING.  When it comes down to it, there’s nothing fancy about weight loss.  It’s hard work and a lot of experimentation.  It requires tons of perseverance when you want nothing more than to give up, however, the truth is that you can never actually quit your diet.  You have to eat to live so your diet should be one that serves YOU best and gives you great health.  Meal planning is empowering.

What’s the secret to meal planning?  The secret is that there is no secret.  You just do it.  MEAL. PLAN. EVERY. DAY.  But there are a few tricks to save you time. Eventually, you will get to the point where meal prep is just part of your daily routine.  You might even find it to be an enjoyable part of your week!

HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:

  • Limit Variety During The Week To Save Time And Money. This means the core of what you eat everyday remains the same, but you can make changes to the seasonings or sides.  Core items in my diet include eggs, egg whites, Wild Alaska Salmon, Cod, Chunk Light Tuna and Tempeh.  To this protein base, I add vegetables and I usually stick to Spinach, Kale, Riced Cauliflower or Green Beans.  Occasionally I have ½ of a baked sweet potato or homemade keto bread.  Snacks include low-fat plain yogurt, berries and a nut butter, a poached egg or a protein bar.  Weekends are fairly similar, but I may have something a little more savory for dinner.
  • Prep and Cook In Bulk On The Weekends.(or your least busy day). If Sunday is your meal prep day, then you’ll have to make sure your grocery shopping is done by the day before.  Frozen meats and fish, for example, must be thawed in the refrigerator for 24 hours prior to cooking.
  • Have The Right Tools For The Right Job. You’ll need to make sure your kitchen tools are easily accessible.  Tools you may find yourself using each week might include a vegetable steamer, a toaster oven, skillets, baking stones, a Nutribullet or blender and a coffee maker.  Everything you use should be stored strategically close to your cooking area.  In addition to cookware, an often neglected aspect of meal prep is having Tupperware and a large insulated lunch bag.  Remember, you’ll be cooking anywhere from 2-5 servings to last you throughout the week and most of your meals won’t be eaten at home.  You’ll have to find a system that works for you.  For me this means I cook on Sundays and Tuesday evenings since I work Monday through Thursday.
  • Know your grocery store and get in and get out. Stick to your grocery list and try to avoid impulse purchases.  If you can limit variety, then your grocery shopping experience will be quick and easy because you’ll be eating the same core foods each week.  This recommendation is not a popular one, but unless you have extra time to plan, purchase and prepare a new menu each week, it’s really your best option.  The number one reason people don’t prepare their own meals is because of perceived lack of time.

Some final pointers—

The core of a healthy eating plan is one that emphasizes whole foods in their mostly natural state.  It should be low in added sugars, refined carbohydrates and saturated fat.  Feel free to go sugar-free, but don’t replace it with artificial sweeteners.

Don’t have time to cook?  No problem. Let our Chef James prepare your meals!  Our meals are designed by dietitians and perfected by our chef.

Order Chef-Prepared Meals