Meal planning is something I’ve tried and failed at in the past. For a while, I was able to force myself to cook instead of consuming microwaveable meals. Blogging my progress really helped but I wasn’t focusing on the healthy aspect. So I’m resolved to not only force myself to once again cook, but I’m aiming to plan some healthy, balanced meals based on the image below. Half my plate should be fruits/veggies, a quarter grains, the other quarter protein and a serving per meal of dairy.
SOME THINGS TO CONSIDER
My gluten intolerance. My poor diet choices has me eating a lot of crap from the grain food group. When I do that, I end up with digestive issues. I once went a week with no grains and I felt great. My GI doctor recommended not completely cutting grains out of my diet but to consume them in moderation. Easier said than done considering…
I don’t eat a lot of vegetables and even less fruit! I probably eat about one serving of fruit in a month! I know, it’s not good and that’s one of the main reasons why I’m trying to meal plan.
I have a tendency to not consume the fresh produce I buy. I want to eat healthy so I buy fruits and veggies with a plan to eat them…but then I wind up choosing convenience foods and the fresh produce winds up in the trash, wasted. I hate wasting food. No more of this!
I don’t eat a lot. For many months I was tracking my calories at MyFitnessPal and struggled most days to reach 1200 calories even while eating processed junk. Fruits and veggies are generally lower in calories so I’m thinking I’m going to have an even more difficult time reaching my daily caloric intake.
Cooking for one. When I do cook, I assume my husband will eat what I make. Often times, he’d rather eat beans or hummus instead and I wind up with leftovers that I can eat for another 3-5 meals! I need to learn to cook for one so I don’t wind up constantly eating leftovers I’m sick of.
I am a chocoholic. Once upon a time I could live off a 1 inch x 1 inch piece of chocolate a day. Those days are long gone. While I’m still not usually eating a whole 3.1 oz bar of chocolate in a day, I pair it with chocolate ice cream or chocolate milk. Too much sugar! I need to get back to smaller portions of chocolate and snack on healthier things. I have a buttload of frozen bananas that I can use to try out banana ice cream recipes I’ve seen on Pinterest.
Holy crap! Meal planning is a lot harder than I thought it would be!
Do you have any tips for someone just beginning to meal plan? Any tips on making and maintaining new habits/better lifestyle choices?
GOALS FOR THE REST OF AUGUST
- Cut down on the grains I eat and buy gluten-free products.
- Consume at least one serving of fruit each day.
- Juice one cup of fruits and veggies daily or make a smoothie.
- Buy smaller quantities of fresh produce, don’t waste it!
- Prepare snack-sized portions and meals ahead of time (freezer meals for the days I want something quick).
- Track my calories. If I’m repeatedly coming up short on reaching 1200 calories a day, consider high calorie shakes.
- Half or even quarter recipes that I can’t freeze.
- Limit myself to one piece of chocolate a day.
- Don’t even buy ice cream!
- Start regularly taking the vitamins/supplements I’ve been “forgetting” to take (calcium, fiber, probiotics, melatonin, etc)
- Get outside for at least 30 minutes each day (wear sunblock!)