Plan your meals each week!
Tip #2 for National Nutrition Month is to plan your meals each week. The key to any habit is being able to repeat the action consistently. Big wins come from small habits. As I have tried to create habits throughout my life, I have found that I have been most successful when I plan. Like actually sit down, and write out a plan. Food habits are no different. I know that when I don’t sit down and write out a plan for my food for the week, I end up buying food that doesn’t always make a meal, over estimate how much food I need, and end up eating out more and/or snacking on whatever is fast and not necessarily nutritious. Cue meal planning.
When meal planning, I always think through three components of a meal – the carbohydrate, the protein, and the non-starchy vegetable. Carbohydrates and protein primarily provide our bodies with energy and should comprise ¼ of your plate respectively. Eating a variety or whole, minimally processed carbs and proteins is best for our bodies. Non-starchy vegetables primarily provide our bodies with vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that help nourish our bodies and help it run well, and should comprise ½ of your plate. Eating a variety of colors of vegetables provide us with a variety of different nutrients, as their color often coincide with the types of nutrients they contain.
Let’s practice with my menu this week. Monday’s are always pizza at our house. So, for protein, we have the cheese and any meat that is on the pizza. For carb, we have the pizza crust. For non-starchy veggie, we have a green salad. Bam. One meal down. The next night, for protein we have BBQ turkey meatballs. For carb, we have the roasted potatoes. For vegetable, we have asparagus and green beans. And so on. After making the meal plan, I can grocery shop to make sure I have the ingredients in the house. Meal planning has been a game changer for me. It saves me time and money, and helps me feed myself and my family well!
Watch Promise Community Health Center’s Social Media pages as Amanda breaks down each concept and gives us tips on how we can start making some new healthier habits! And call 712-722-1700 to make an appointment with one of our Promise providers to get a referral to see one of our Promise Health Coaches today!