I know a lot of you probably feel that prepping meals on the weekend is all a bit too much. I can feel your pain!
For years, this has been a way of life for me. Mainly because I suffer from so many allergies and intolerance’s to food, it becomes safer and easier to make things from scratch. As a result, I’ve become somewhat of a prep master chef, for relatively cheap, easy and fast meals. I thoroughly enjoy narrowing down my protein and veggie sources according to what my intolerance’s dictate! It does not leave a lot of room for making endless choices and spending hours in utter confusion within the organic grocer, looking for new goodies to add to the mix. I keep my meals simple, easy and delicious, from breakfast, snacks and dinner.
Some people may protest that is utterly boring and a mundane way of life. To that I say, I would rather allocate my decision making to things that are more worthwhile to me, rather than the daily grind of preparing food continuously. The less decisions to make, the more effortless things become. I think that’s extremely important for something like meal preparation, as it’s a must do for survival!
If you like gourmet meals, filled with hundreds of foreign ingredients, or lots of quirky and innovative recipes to try daily, this is probably going to be extremely boring for you.
For those who want more order, structure and decide easily what to buy and make, lose weight and gain muscle mass at the same time, this is definitely for you! Please read on.
My main dietary requirement is that of supreme gut health in order to control allergic reactions. This means allergens are completely out of the question, and simple, nutritious and delicious meals are in all the time. Limiting what I eat makes it easier, and aiming for fat loss and muscle mass takes it on another level.
I will run through some strategies with you, and perhaps it may assist in your daily food intake and exercise results.
Breakfast meal 1 (not pictured here):-
- Organic 100% oats, mixed with protein powder, cinnamon. Topped with seasonal fresh organic strawberries and coconut yogurt
- 2x organic egg whites, 1 yolk, 1 slice paleo bread containing egg whites, flax-seeds, almond meal and pumpkin seeds. Oil and coconut butter is used as a condiment.
This meal should be a starter that ticks all the boxes for nutritional performance, and it begins your day on the pathway to eating well throughout the week. For me, this meal is after exercising. I choose to swap a high protein one day, and a moderate carb the next. This is called carb cycling, and it allows me to replenish any glycogen stores in the muscles. Because I use fat for fuel when I work out, I have to ensure that muscle mass does not catabolise due to lack of protein.
Snack (or meal 2) :-
- I admit, I have my double strength almond cappuccino to get me through the day every morning. Although it’s not a snack, it’s my daily little perk
- I also snack on macadamias, almonds, walnuts and pecans. These are activated organic nuts. While they are an indulgence for me, due to their expense, I love the effect they have on my body. Strong, healthy hair, skin and nails is the result. Macadamias are a magical nut indeed. Include nuts as your snack during the day. Do not exceed the recommended serving. Eat more protein instead.
- Mine pictured is an egg with a serving of broccoli. Egg is a powerhouse, nutrient rich food. Broccoli is filled with iron (something I lack) and it’s light enough for me to eat with egg, or any other form of protein. It’s also low calorie and very nutritious. I drizzle mine with olive oil and some pink salt.
Lunch meal 3:-
- Load up on veggies. They should be the most predominant part of your meals. I choose to have a lot of veggies, top mine with avocado slithers, as well as sauerkraut, to increase the good bacteria in my gut. My protein source would be whatever Is left over from dinner. That could be salmon, white fish, chicken or even a couple of eggs. Make life easier by cooking a bit of extra food the night before, so you can have a healthy serving of protein the next day. Top your salad with apple cider vinegar, rock salt and olive oil.
Mid afternoon meal 4:-
- I struggle a lot with this meal, possibly because my lunch is quite fibrous, and takes a lot longer to digest. This is why I now eat the pudding pictured here. It contains chia seeds, flax-seeds, coconut milk, protein powder (plant based) and some cinnamon, sprinkling of nuts and strawberries. It’s truly one of the lightest, the easiest and such a nutritious powerhouse pudding. I love it!
Dinner meal 5:-
I love my dinners so much! Usually I’m hungry, because I do walk some distance to get back home. Incidental exercise, running to and from trains and forcing your post leg day legs up a hill, can be a challenge on most days! Dinners therefore have to be quick, easy and delicious. I have a 13 year old to cater for, and things can get rough with food. I opt to make sure the food is tasty and healthy enough for all of us, keeping in mind my allergies and eliminating any cross contamination. Keeping it easy and fast is key after work. Try chicken slow cooked, even a soup with some very fast protein like turkey, steak or even some baked fish. Make a bit of extra food so you have something to eat at work, or on the go. Choose your veggies with either fresh or baked. The evenings are challenging with all the noise going on around you. My advice on this one is to always plan ahead, and know what you will be doing. Plan, marinate, pack lunches and do what is needed earlier on in the morning. It will save you from stalling in the evenings.
Remember that simple is very effective, and add interest with sauces and toppings like coconut amino, sweet chilly, mustard, herbs and spices, chilli and more.
One question you could answer for me is : What do you look for in a nutritional 4 week program? Is it recipes or just a guideline of what you should be eating, and you can decide, change or ignore completely? What would make you stick to the nutritional planning a lot better than what you are? I would love to know your answers to these.
Have a wonderful week ahead.