Fall is just around the corner, the kids are back in school and participating in sports and extra-curricular activities, and it’s quickly getting crazy around here! Whether you work or are a stay-at-home parent, challenges arise this time every year regarding eating healthy on-the-go. Time is one of your biggest challenges. So what are some helpful ideas that we might incorporate into our weekly schedule to simplify things and also ensure that our families are getting high-quality nutrition and eating the recommended 7-13 servings of fruits and vegetables each day?
- Start the day with a whole food smoothie. Smoothies are an excellent way to incorporate several servings of fruits and veggies daily. Spinach has a mild flavor and can be added (without changing the flavor) while ensuring that you get a highly absorbable form of calcium as well as carbohydrates. Whole food protein powders or Greek yogurt also ensure that you are eating a healthy protein. Freezing bags of your favorite combinations for an easy grab-and-go option makes it easy. *Health Tip: Make sure to add healthy fats like avocado or nut butters to keep you full and fuel your brain.
- Pick a day to do meal prep and planning. Saturdays or Sundays are excellent days to do grocery shopping and meal preparation for the coming week. If a whole week is too overwhelming to plan for at once, food-prep for at least 3-4 days (especially the days that you know you have after work/school activities). Having snacks like diced fruits and veggies, crackers, cheese and wraps ready to grab and put in a cooler will keep you out of the fast food line. This technique also saves time and money and ensures that you are fueling your bodies for success. *Health Tip: Salads in a jar and overnight oatmeal can save time and add variety. Click here to see how to best layer your salad.: http://www.tipmine.com/uploads/tip/image/7670/salad_in_a_jar.jpg
- Know your options. Realistically, there will be times that we just aren’t as prepared as we’d like to be and have to make a “fast food run.” It’s Okay! Despite these occurrences, you can still plan ahead by having a list of places that you know offer healthy options and go there instead of somewhere that doesn’t offer fruits or veggies. Most restaurants today include salad options; however, be aware that salad dressings can contain unhealthy ingredients and high amounts of fats, so choose wisely! *Health tip: If you order chicken strips, opt for the side salad or a fruit cup instead of French fries. And for those days when you’re really craving those fries, order a large salad for your entrée and be done with it! Just make #onesimplechange…
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