As women, we know all too well about the race against the clock. It just seems like there are never enough hours in a day. Due to our overwhelming and demanding schedules, many of us are not getting the nutrition that our bodies need to maintain optimal health. Many women feel that eating healthy is just too difficult and time consuming. However, it is vitally important that we make our health priority. The environment is toxic, overworking our bodies is toxic and not getting enough sleep is toxic. When you add those factors in with a nutrient-deprived diet, you are creating a recipe for disaster. Despite popular belief, eating healthy doesn’t have to be complicated; it just takes some pre-planning and discipline. If we don’t make a choice to implement healthy eating changes now, our bodies, careers, families and businesses may suffer later. Make a decision today to make your health priority by following the tips listed below.
Tip #1 – Eliminate Junk: This first tip may seem like a no brainer, but you’d be surprised as to how much you are compromising your health by eating filler foods and fast food. Do you find yourself eating chips, candy, cookies, bread and fast food just to hold you over until the next meal? If so, it’s time to eliminate the junk and implement a plan.
Tip #2 – Plan Ahead: I know it may seem overwhelming to plan your meals in advance, but this one tip can make or break your healthy eating regime. Every Sunday, I take 10-20 minutes to sit down and write out our meals for the week on a dry erase board. I include breakfast, lunch and dinner. This makes my life much easier once the weekly madness ensues. I also cook two dinners on Sunday afternoon, which means I will have pre-cooked meals in the fridge until Wednesday. It’s more work on Sunday afternoon, but it also equates to less work and stress during the week. Another thing that really helps is to pack a lunch and/or snack bag whenever leaving home for more than a couple of hours. This way you don’t fall victim to the fast food trap. You may say, “Who has time for that?” Although, we make time for the things that matter to us the most. How much time are you wasting on social media or watching TV? Simply trade in a few of those hours every week to invest in yourself and your family.
Tip #3 – Daily Smoothie: This one tip continues to save my life over and over again. It literally takes me less than three minutes to make a smoothie and I can pack it with a variety of produce, protein, vitamins and minerals. I usually will spend 30-45 minutes twice a month making smoothie bags. I take sandwich size Ziploc bags and pack them with greens (spinach, kale and/or lettuce) and fruit. I place six of these bags inside of a large freezer bag and then into the freezer. I normally make two or three freezer bags full each time. Then when I am rushing to get out of the house I can throw the contents into my blender along with my liquid of choice and protein powder (which contains pea protein, chia seeds, quinoa, pumpkin seeds and coconut). Boom! My three-minute, nutrient packed meal is done.
Tip #4 – Eat Fresh: This is a simple tip that will pay off significantly. You should make it a routine to consume at least 50% of your meal as produce, preferably raw. There are vitamins and minerals that your body can only get from fresh fruits and vegetables, so pack on the produce.
Tip #5 – Water Works: Of course we know to drink at least eight glasses of water a day, but how many of us actually do? Most of us, due to our daily activity, weight and lifestyle, need more than 64 ounces of water each day. The easiest way to accomplish this is to ALWAYS keep a bottle/glass of water with you. Drink a glass when you first wake up, a glass 30 minutes before and 30 minutes after each meal/snack and an hour before going to bed. If you can’t remember all of that, then simply set a “water” alarm on your phone.
I hope these tips help you incorporate healthier eating into your busy lifestyle.