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Healthy Eating When You’re Short On Time

written by Guest Blogger December 14, 2013

Have you been going crazy decorating, shopping, wrapping and attending holiday parties? Then you’ll especially appreciate this article by guest blogger, Kimberley Laws!

Let’s face it. Unless you’re a hermit who lives in the backwoods or a cloistered monk who has taken a vow of silence, you’re likely a very busy person. Between your career, your family, your household chores, and the occasional time spent with friends, you barely have time to think about eating healthy, let alone actually do it. The problem is that poor eating habits can impact your health and your ability to complete any of your many duties.

Here are a few ways to ensure that your body’s dietary needs are met during your most hectic moments:

  1. Have a plan. We often opt for fast food and other unhealthy alternatives because we don’t have a plan. When you’re busy, the last thing you want to do is try to figure out what ingredients you have at home and what you can make with them. That’s why it is important to pre-plan a week’s worth of healthy breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and snacks–and ensure that you have the ingredients on hand to make them.
  2. Shop with a purpose. Most of us have heard the old adage, “don’t go grocery shopping on an empty stomach.” Well, hitting the supermarket aisles without a list is another big grocery shopping no-no. Devise a list based on what you will need to follow your aforementioned plan. Not only will purposeful purchasing save you money, but it will also prevent you from buying unhealthy items that are quick to prepare, but contain harmful ingredients and little nutritional value. 
  3. Aim for leftovers. There is nothing nicer than heading home after a busy workday with the knowledge that supper is already prepared. By paying attention to quality and quantity, you can ensure that you and your family eat well for several days. Consider making a hefty helping of vegetarian chili, spaghetti sauce (using ground poultry and whole grain pasta, of course), or cook a generously proportioned turkey. (Check out, Thanksgiving Leftover Heaven: Chicken Pot Pie)
  4. Say “hello” to your slow cooker. Why not let your crock pot worry about the cooking while you’re out conquering the world? Simply toss in the ingredients, turn it on, leave it to do its job, and you’ll return home to one of your favorite comfort foods. And slow cookers aren’t just for stews. A quick visit to Pinterest will yield a plethora of scrumptious and healthy crock pot recipes. (Here’s Lazy Canadian’s Crock Pot Cabbage Rolls, for instance.) 
  5. Then say “hi” to the blender. Whether you opt for a smoothie made from fruits or greens or a homemade protein shake, you will be amazed at how quickly you can whip up this healthful meal replacement. It is especially helpful to divide your ingredients into smoothie-sized portions in advance to save time later. For instance, kale can be prewashed and frozen in small freezer bags, and bananas can be chopped in advance and frozen in the same manner. 
  6. Arm yourself for work. It’s hard to be healthy at the office. The seemingly endless supply of donuts, coworkers munching on chips and chocolate, and the urge to head down the street for a burger or full fat latte, are temptations that many of us have to face eight hours a day, five days a week. How can a mere mortal expect to fight that and win? Simple. Bring weapons from home like a tasty hot lunch (and don’t forget the healthy dessert), a couple of healthy snacks, and some beverages. And, when you do opt to partake in the office smorgasbord, choose healthier options like a green tea, unsalted rice crackers, and a piece of cheese. 

By following a few easy tips, you can eat healthy in a rush. So, forget that vow of silence and stop looking for a hide-out in the woods. Keep doing the things that you love and look after yourself. Your body–and the people who rely on you–will thank you.

About the Author

Kimberley Laws is a freelance writer and avid blogger. She has recently become acquainted with the fine art of slow cooking, which has freed up more time for her chronic neuroses and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.

What is your favourite healthy and easy-to-make recipe? 

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