• Erica

How to Pack a Healthy Lunch

So you've decided to eat healthier, then the lunch realization hits. What am I supposed to eat for lunch now??? A slight bit of panic sets in. One of the stresses of changing the way you eat is, well, changing the way you eat. It feels like you're starting from scratch with figuring out what you're willing and no longer willing to eat (at least not as frequently) with your new lifestyle. Nevertheless, it's a question to which you'll discover the answer as you continue on your journey. Be that as it may, it doesn't hurt to have a starting point and some tips when it comes to packing a lunch!


 


 

Here are some tips to packing a lunch:

  1. PICK A TIME: Once you've decided you're going to pack lunches, choose a time to do it. Choose a time that you can do it pretty consistently. If you're already in the kitchen before or after dinner that may be a good time, especially if you're taking leftovers from dinner. Another possible time is in the mornings while you're making coffee or getting breakfast together. In addition, decide if it suits you to make several lunches ahead of time, or if you're okay with making lunch for one day at a time. Making several lunches ahead of time puts you in more of a grab-and-go position on your way out of the door for work.

  2. KEEP IT SIMPLE: Lunch does not have to be an elaborate complicated meal. Literally, you can put some fruits and veggies, along with some nuts or seeds in your lunch box, and call it a day. You can pack a bagged salad with additional ingredients or as is. Leftovers from the dinner you had the night before is also on the table as an option.

  3. PACK ENOUGH FOOD: There are some who do not eat breakfast. If that is you, be sure to pack enough lunch so that you're satisfied when you finish eating. Also when eating whole food, like fruits, veggies, whole grains, nuts, and seeds, you'll find that you do not get that overstuffed bloated feeling after you eat. You may also find that food does not feel as if it is sitting in your stomach for hours and hours. With that, be sure to pack healthy snacks to nibble on before and after lunch. Again, nothing elaborate maybe just an extra container of fruits, veggies, etc.

  4. INVEST IN THE RIGHT TOOLS. Be sure to have what you need in order to make packing your lunch as easy as possible. For example, having storage containers makes it easy to pile in whatever you decide to take for lunch, and you can reuse them. If your workplace does not have refrigeration, for instance you work outdoors, have insulated containers and cold packs to keep your food cold. Insulated containers can also keep hot food hot. Having your food at the desired temperature makes eating your lunch a more enjoyable experience, thus one you'll want to repeat. Invest in the kitchen tools you'll need as well. It's much more efficient to cut fruits and veggies on a cutting board with a good knife than on a plate with an inadequate knife. Make the job as easy as possible for you. You'll discover what tools you need as you decide what you will typically take for lunch.

  5. HAVE A BACK UP PLAN: Assuredly there will be days that you will not have an adequate amount of time to pack lunch. No worries. That's what backup plans are for. Several solutions exist for this problem.

  6. Keep in mind a healthier option at or near work that you can purchase. Knowing what'll eat helps you stick to your healthier way of eating.

  7. If you decide to deviate and indulge, that's fine too. Just get back to the way you desire to eat with the next meal. No biggie at all!

  8. Know your quick "throw-together" lunches you enjoy. Keep those foods on hand during the work-week. If you have the time, pre-cut fruit and veggies for easy access, or just grab them as is. It's nice to be able to just throw some stuff in a bag quickly on your way out of door and know that you're still going to have a healthy lunch.

Packing a lunch helps you maintain the healthier lifestyle you seek while outside of your home. Outside of the home, challenges can be tougher and temptation can be greater. However, when you know you have a healthy, filling meal that you prepared and you enjoy with you, all of the obstacles seem much smaller. Remember lunch does not have to be an elaborate, complicated meal. It just needs to contain enough whole food you enjoy to satisfy your hunger. That's it.


Always striving to help,


Erica

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