Here are some practical and realistic ways to meal prep your way to weight loss success
Weight loss begins and is maintained through proper meal preparation.
The key is to eat for fuel and pleasure and to eat the right amount to sustain your appetite & keep you slim.
Nothing is worse than being hungry between meals and needing to eat after meals. However, with a proper meal preparation strategy in place, that shouldn’t happen.
When you plan, time is saved from stressing and worrying about what to eat and if it’s too much or too little fuel to help you lose weight.
I have found that meal prepping for many years has improved my eating habits, and it was the one factor that gave me enough leverage to see my iron & strength increase while keeping my body fat in check.
The only time I go off my plan is on holiday — but I stick to roughly the same nutritional plan. I don’t drink, smoke or eat junk food.
Therefore, I don’t have too many issues with weight gain (unless there is a vegan dessert parlour around!)
The best nutritional plan will always be the Mediterranean diet — because it’s approved by research.
Research backs this diet to support weight loss since it’s primarily plant-based, including many vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, herbs and spices, and small portions of meats with lots of olive oil.
The good news is that this is highly encouraged if you occasionally like a glass of red wine.
Following a diet such as the Mediterranean way of life is one path to take, although there are many other ways to lose and maintain weight. I’m giving you an example in case you want to start with something that works.
What to think about when meal prepping
Meal preparation isn’t supposed to be a strict or restrictive plan.
Instead, it should align with your goals and food preferences while maintaining nutrient-dense alternatives that help you lose weight while at the same time ensuring you get the best nutrients possible.
Although I say ‘non-restrictive’, that doesn’t mean adding ice cream and candy bars to your diet.
Although they are allowed when you are a little more experienced in meal prepping and adding these indulgences in conjunction with good meal prep, exercise and portion control.
I believe that the basics still matter, and when you are starting — it’s best to start from ground zero without complicating it by adding steps into your prep that might mitigate your hard work.
So, save the bars and snacks for later.
Let’s focus on the key things that make meal-prepping easy and effective.
One: Use these key protein sources
When you plan your meal options, think of low-caloric foods that are high in nutrient value.
For instance, add chicken breast, turkey, fish, lentils and eggs as the primary protein sources to alternate regularly (to beat boredom).
Then, add the higher caloric protein sources every 3–4 days, like beef, lamb and chicken, with the skin.
Two: Use an array of vegetables in season
I recommend buying what’s in season within your area or residence to get the freshest vegetables.
If you have a soft spot for anything, buy it frozen and eat it regularly. Add lots of greens such as broccoli, kale, spinach, cucumber, lettuce and celery into your meals.
These will increase the nutritional profile of your food, bring enough fibre into your diet and keep you satisfied after eating.
Three: Always include fats
Fats are so important because they help absorb vitamins and promote satiety while speeding up your metabolism and helping to regulate your blood sugar.
In addition, they help add an array of flavours to your food while keeping diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease at bay.
Some fats you should include during every meal are avocado, olive oil, coconut oil, nuts and seeds.
Fats you should avoid are anything of the trans or saturated family, and these fats are abundant in cured meats, vegetable oils and all other processed meats. These foods are not only bad for your health, but they increase your chance of disease.
Stick with good quality fats that benefit your health and weight loss goals.
Four: You don’t have to bypass carbs
I used to bypass the carb section of a weight loss plan — but I’m here to tell you that’s unnecessary!
It’s not the carbs that are a problem — the amount you eat and what kind of carb it is!
For instance, I’m not talking about pastries and cookies here.
Good quality carbs consist of high fibre, vitamins, minerals and nutrients.
Plus, carbs are great for your gut health too.
Eat sources such as oats, sweet potato, whole grains, coloured rice, pulses, beans and even basmati rice.
Yes, you heard right — rice is good to eat as a balanced diet. You can gain many healthy gut bacteria benefits when eaten within its portion size and prepared in a certain way.
Please read below to find out.
Here are Four Simple Ways to Eat White Rice While Managing Blood SugarThere is no need to eliminate this cost-effective dietary staplemedium.com
Five: Add in some activity
I can’t leave this one out because it will help accelerate your weight loss results.
While you don’t have to do anything extreme, I highly recommend weight training while adding some light to moderate cardio.
That could be walking, cycling or anything else you enjoy doing daily.
It will take effort every day, but I want activities like this to help you mentally and emotionally and benefit you in weight loss.
Aim to work out 3–4 times weekly, but stay active daily. Of course, that also applies to days you work out. So keep the movement going, whether you work out or not.
People don’t understand how incidental exercise impacts weight loss and maintenance.
Start by carefully planning your meals in three’s and adding snacks such as eggs, avocado with olive oil, fruit, nuts and yogurt as a base. Then, keep experimenting and expanding as you go along.
I’d love to know if this has been helpful, as I plan on expanding into a series of simple weight loss hacks that are probably overlooked by many.
If you are interested, please comment on what you find challenging and wish me to write about in more detail.
Some ideas are:
Basic nutrition breakdown meal y meal
For your reference, here are some helpful posts that will inspire you
Three Key Vegan Foods Which Help You Lose Weight & Body FatFibre is key to weight loss and maintenance over the long termmedium.com
Improve your Metabolic Health By Doing This One Thing After Every MealIt’s the little things we do on a day-to-day basis that fan the fire of our metabolismmedium.com
Fermented Foods — Four Reasons Why You Should Eat Them Every DayBoost your gut health with an infusion of fermented foodsmedium.com
Five Sneaky Ways to Downgrade Blood Sugar Responses In FruitDiabetic or not, it’s always a good idea to keep your blood sugar stable throughout your lifetimemedium.com
Please sign up via my link if you want to read more articles like this or start writing your own. I’d love to see you on the other side. ????????
Sign up here for your medium subscription.
I get a portion of your monthly fee at no extra cost to you, and it will go a long way in supporting me as a writer.