Live Total Wellness

Friday, March 04, 2011

Healthy Meals In A Flash

In this rushed and busy world it is hard to take the time to have a proper meal. When kids call and work calls, we usually grab what we can get our hands on just to keep the hunger pains at bay. But today is a new day! We are going to give you some suggestions for healthy meals that won’t take up too much time and energy.

The first step of eating healthy is planning. With a plan in place, you’ll begin to see how healthy eating can be easier for you and your family.

Preparing your breakfast and lunch the night before can be a great start to eating healthy foods. When you oversleep that blows all your well meant healthy food ideas. There is no time to fix your breakfast or lunch so you grab something on the way with less nutritional value.  Taking a little time the night before, to get everything together goes a long way. You’ll be glad you did when you are in a rush the next morning. Here are some ideas for healthy meals in a flash.

TOAST – Toast is just the beginning. Try choosing whole grain and multi-grain breads with seeds. From here, you can add a little protein to help feed your hunger and also stop mid-morning cravings. Add a piece of sliced turkey, cheese, peanut butter or any type of  nut butters such as almond butter, or scrambled egg. The eggs can be scrambled ahead of time and reheated in the morning for a few seconds. You can also pack the turkey or cheese separate from the bread and make a mini sandwich in the morning.

SMOOTHIES – These look just like glorified shakes but they are power packed with good stuff. You don’t just have to add fruits (banana, strawberry, blueberries, applesauce, mango, pineapple). You can also put in a cup of low-fat yogurt,  (greek yogurt is a great way to get some good protein) flaxseed, wheat germ and other good things to boost your vitamin intake. Mix your ingredients together in a bowl the night before. In the morning, put them in the waiting blender and in a minute or two, you’re ready to go. You could make your smoothie even healthier by adding spinach, kale or chard.  These items will add tons of vitamins and minerals to your smoothie not to mention the antioxidants you glean from these vegetables.

EGGS – Eggs are quite versatile. If you are in a hurry and most of you are, boil them. You can boil them the night before and have them ready to go. Eat one before going out the door to work or cut it up on toast for a quick sandwich.

FRUIT - Fruit is a great way to start your day.  You can make a fruit salad the night before using apples, pears, pineapple, blueberries, raspberries, mango and bananas.  Make sure you know which fruits are best to buy organic to eliminate your intake of pesticides. Sprinkle some lemon or lime juice on the salad the night before and then mix your fruit with some Greek yogurt in the morning.  Greek yogurt contains the highest number of protein grams so you have a vitamin rich, whole protein meal.
Bananas make a great base for any type of nut butter.  Spread your almond or peanut butter on your banana and you're set.  Make sure you use nut butters without sugar.  There are several good brands of organic nut butters all made without sugar or sweeteners.

YOGURT - Plain yogurt mixed with fruit, nuts and seeds can make a complete meal.  Mix yogurt with some flax seeds or sunflower seeds, some walnuts and almonds (use raw) or granola.  Greek yogurt has about 14 grams of protein in just 5.5 oz.  It also comes in non-fat, 1%, and 2% fat.

Who says that bag lunches are dead? They just have fancier packaging if you buy one of those recycle able lunch bags. Get your lunch ready the night before so all you have to do is line up the boxes on the counter for everyone to grab as they leave.

Lunches don't need to have sandwiches in them all the time either.  Use a variety of items packed in single servings for your family.

LEFTOVERS - Leftovers from dinner are usually better the next day anyway.  Pasta, soups, meats, roasts, and chicken make great lunches.  Pack them in containers where they can be reheated but don't use plastics with BPA's.  Children can also take those leftovers.  If they can't reheat them, wrap up some chicken from the night before, a piece of fruit, grapes or fruit sliced up, and some carrots, zucchini, pepper strips or broccoli pieces and you're set for a nutritious lunch that's easy to eat.

Any of the foods listed for breakfast can also be used for lunch.  You can make a smoothie the night before and put it in a drink container.  When you're ready to drink your smoothie, give it a good shake or stir and you're set!

Are you looking for healthy solutions to your quick meal dilemma? Use the suggestions above to help get you moving on the right track even if you are already moving fast.

If you have more ideas, I would love your input!

Stay tuned for recipes and more meals on the run!

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