I shop the outer isles of the grocery store and stay away from pre-packaged foods. If it has more than a few ingredients, I stay away. This includes bread too! I don't even want it in my house. The healthier foods are the whole foods and nothing that comes pre-packaged as a meal. This includes those "diet frozen dinners", too! You know the ones. Those processed foods have so much sodium! So who the heck wants to retain water? Grill your own veggies and protein and enjoy non-processed food!
I try to eat 2-3 servings of fruits and veggies with every meal. If I do this, I will have consumed 10+ servings of fruits and vegetables by the end of the day. And I always make sure I have a variety of fruits and vegetables, and a variety of color!
Every week I use 1 cup and 2 cup glass bowls with lids to set up lunches and snacks for the week. When I cook dinner I do not put the leftovers in a big bowl to be forgotten, I measure an appropriate lunch time amount and put in a glass bowl with a strong sealed lid.
I plan my weekly menu around my schedule to curb the urge to eat out. On days that I know I'll have something else to do during the time that I'm normally cooking (ex. on day's my daughter has dance until 5:30) I plan a slow cooker meal so that I know dinner will be ready when we get home and I'm not tempted to stop somewhere. On the days I know I probably just won't feel like cooking (usually Friday or Saturday) I plan something that can be prepared in under 20 minutes.
If I don't plan ahead I just seem to do whatever I "feel" like, which often doesn't equal ANYTHING on my goal list.
i drink one 8 oz glass of water before I put any food in my mouth. Makes me fill fuller quicker and I notice I am not hungry after eating my small meals or snacks. I never get headaches anymore ( dehydration is the number one reason for headaches) and I don't get thirsty anymore either ( which is your bodies way of telling you are already dehydrated) Water is a huge help for many things!!
If you are going on a trip and need some healthy food to keep you going, sometimes trail mix and fruit won't cut it. I found a company called Go Picnic (they are online too) which makes organic (even vegan) lunchables for adults!
I buy lot's of produce and sometimes I can't always finish it. Instead of wasting it. I now take veggies that are near expiring and toss them into a food processor. I use the mixture to pep up boring foods. Use in your meatloaf mixture, hide in meatballs and pasta sauces. I even toss with mayo and tuna for a tasty sandwich. My kids haven't even noticed!
When I want to enjoy my meal and I want to make it last, I usually eat with my other hand. I slows me down so I don't shovel down the meal in 5 minutes plus it fills me up when I take a long time to eat. I don't know, it works for me!!
When I come home from the grocery store I immediately prep all my fruits so that I can have them for healthy snacks and smoothies (melon, strawberries, mangos, etc.). I will cut up all fruits that won't oxidize...even oranges...because sometimes the effort to peel an orange seems too much on a busy day. I put them in both big bowls and 8-oz bowls to take to work. Prep like this helps me save money too because I don't waste half-eaten produce, like melons.
I use my myfitnesspal app on my droid to plan my meals a day ahead. I do it right before I go to bed so that I know exactly how long my breakfast will take to prepare and how long my lunch will take to pack. It also helps me keep from veering off track during the day.
Every weekend I plan what my week will look like with my meals. I track them ahead of time and then use the sparkpeople tool to print out a grocery list. It's so handy. I find that when I do that I focus on just what I need when I go grocery shopping so I don't even get a chance to purchase something that may sabotage my efforts.
Did you know that the colors red, orange & yellow can actually make you desire to eat something? On the other hand, the color blue can suppress your appetite. Size also has a lot to do with perspective. If you fix & eat your meal off of a small plate, you feel like you are eating more than if you put it on a large plate. Soooo,,, eating your meals off of small, blue plates can trick your mind into thinking you're eating more than you are!
I am one who is often hungry and needs a snack every 2.5-3 hours. To make sure I don't eat more often than that by habit, I set an alarm to the next time I can or should eat, and make sure not to eat before the alarm rings. So if I have lunch at noon, I will set the alarm on my phone to ring at 3pm. Then and only then am I allowed my snack, NOT before! This has actually helped me control my cravings and the number of times I eat per day!
I go grocery shopping once or twice/month. Before shopping, I pull up SparkPeople's suggested menu. I pick the items off of that list that I would like to eat and write down the ingredients. Then I pick one to two recipesto try and write down those ingredients. I also pick one reward food (popsicles, low-fat cookies, etc...). Before grocery shopping, I make sure to eat something (a snack or meal) so I'm not tempted to crave foods when I'm shopping.
I implore everyone to keep track of all their meals during the day. Not only does it help to see where you are in terms of calories, but you can also monitor your fat, carb, and protein consumption.
As a professional organizer, more people I work with are frustrated by meal-time rush. With September upon us, try these tips to always have meals on hand!
Eating 5 or 6 small / medium meals a day is like putting coal in a stove regularly to keep a fire burning steadily. This is much better than skipping meals or having one big meal a day. Your fire will go out if let it run down and you will smother it if you overload the stove with coal at any time.
Eat several times during the day instead of breakfast, lunch, dinner. If you plan for five smaller meals instead of three bigger ones, you'll feel full all the time - in fact, you might need to make yourself eat because you won't be hungry yet. But it definitely busts those plateaus!
If you drink a glass of water befor your main meals it fills you up and little also drink water with your meals!
I typically plan my meals on the weekend for the coming week before going to the grocery store. When I looked at the food I already had in the freezer and pantry, I realized that I didn't need to go to the store. I have plenty for the week. "Shopping" what you already have saves money!
Strive to eat breakfast, pack your lunch, and cook dinner. Avoid buying (unless you already what you are going to get) - It's cheaper and healthier. Look up recipes and make big batches of healthy meals. Divide them into reasonable portions so they are ready for eating throughout the week.