7 Easy Prep Meals to Keep You Trim
Posted on September 12 2016
An old adage explains, “Plan, not to fail. Fail not, to plan.” Getting ready for date night requires some prep beforehand—you have to find the right dress to set the mood, pick accessories to go with it, select makeup that highlights your best features, and style checklist goes on. If you want to lose weight, you need to plan not just your exercise routine but also your nutritional requirements. The food you eat and the food you avoid help you achieve your weight loss and maintenance goals more sensibly.
With jam-packed schedules and to-do list items that are perpetually occurring in our everyday lives, finding the time required to plan and cook your meals may seem difficult. Is it even a wonder that we often settle for quick processed foods or take out every other day? The problem with this is that while it keeps you fed, it does absolutely nothing to keep you trim. Fitness and health experts have begun to push meal preps as an alternative. Even if you do not have too much time at hand, preparing meals for easy consumption later in the week is a great way to keep trim on the go.
In this article we cover simple and fast meals that are easily prepared using less than 5 ingredients. With less than 5 ingredients per meal, the prep process is quick, and results are exactly what you need to ensure that your diet train does not get derailed during the week with snacking and rushed choices.
One of the key ingredients for weight loss and for maintaining your trim figure is fiber. As compared to other sugary cereals, your body uses up oatmeal at a much slower pace. This means that you are sure to be satiated for longer, have lasting energy, and maintain optimum blood sugar levels. Prepping your oats for breakfast is easy. Make more than a few ramekins of breakfast oats so you do not miss a meal as important as breakfast throughout the week.
Breakfast Oats Recipe
Mix up about 50gms of oats with bananas, chia seeds, and some cinnamon. Soak this mix in almond milk (or whatever milk you prefer), and refrigerate. Your to-go breakfast is ready! Cinnamon helps in maintaining insulin levels in the body which keeps your appetite in check, and in specifically targeting that stubborn belly fat.
Green Egg Cupcakes
According to a research study by Rochester Center for Obesity in America, eggs should be your go-to meal option especially for breakfast. Their research indicates that eating this nutritious dish for breakfast helps you resists binging on unhealthy foods, and limit your calorie intake by more than 400 calories in the course of the day! Make this killer weight loss food even better by adding some greens to it.
Green Egg Cupcake Recipe
Add ¼ cup almond milk, 12 eggs, salt, and pepper in a bowl. Pack spinach, bell peppers, or any green vegetable of your choosing into 12 muffin cups. Add the whisked egg mixture, and bake it for about 15-20 minutes. Enjoy two of these simple yet delicious and healthy green egg cupcakes for breakfast or lunch on-the-go.
Sweet Quinoa for Breakfast
Closely related to kale, spinach, and Swiss chard, quinoa is a great aid to your weight loss plans. This superfood is packed with proteins and fiber, and has a low glycemic index to boot. Preparing quinoa for breakfast is an easy-peasy meal prep that you are able to complete in no time at all.
Sweet Quinoa Recipe
Cook your quinoa beforehand. Add a handful of dried berries, pumpkin seeds, and nuts such as walnuts or pecans, along with a dash of cinnamon to the cooked quinoa. Your prep is done! Simply heat a scoop of this mix for about 1 minute, top it off with almond milk, and enjoy.
Other than being jam-packed with nutrients, quinoa is also a very versatile grain. Here’s how to whip quinoa up for lunch or dinner.
Savory Quinoa Recipe
Give quinoa a Mediterranean twist by adding chopped cucumbers, lemon juice, pitted olives, and seasoning to your pre-cooked quinoa. Mix it up and gorge on a Mediterranean-inspired, flavorsome meal that also keeps your waistline trim.
Chicken and Bean Salad in Mason Jars
Mason jars are a blessing to quick meal preps. Put whatever you like to eat in the jar, and come crunch time, you have a meal that is ready to eat and mobile. Use chicken that is not breaded and is without skin as this helps you consume fewer calories. Another ingredient on the list is black beans which are known as one of the best superfoods for weight loss. Other than plant-derived protein, black beans are packed with essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber.
Chicken and Bean Recipe
Mix lime juice and extra-virgin oil to make the dressing. Layer black beans, cooked chicken, a vegetable you like, and some lettuce to top it off inside the Mason jar. Close the jar tight and this salad will keep in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Remember to store the jar upright, and add the heavier ingredients (dressing, chicken, etc.) at the bottom with lettuce on the top to make sure that the salad retains its crunch.
Vegetable Pouch for Lunch
Raw vegetables are extremely nutritious, and rarely require any prep time.
Veggie Pouch Recipe
Slice carrots, broccoli, cucumbers, and cherry tomatoes. Pack a generous helping of these vegetables to enjoy with some guacamole, salsa, or an individual container of hummus. You may also consider roasting these vegetables after drizzling them with a bit olive oil, lime juice, and rosemary.
Avocado Chicken Salad
Whether you want to lose some weight or simply maintain your trim figure, incorporating avocado into your diet is a win-win. Although avocados have a high fat content, they contain monounsaturated fat which is characterized as “good” fats sans any cholesterol or trans-fat. This particular salad offers about 33 percent of the fiber content that is recommended for daily intake, and 40gms of protein. Not only does this help you keep your diet clean but also keeps your hunger at bay for longer.
Avocado Chicken Salad Recipe
Mash ¼ avocado with ¾ cup pre-cooked chicken (leftovers will do too!), 2 tablespoons of unsweetened yogurt, and a dash of lime juice. Roll the salad up in a lettuce leaf or enjoy it as an open sandwich with a couple of tomato slices.
How to Use Meal Prep to Keep You Trim
Leaving your nutrition up to chance means your weight loss and maintenance plans are more likely to be derailed if you are in a rush or on the go. Planning ahead of time and prepping your meals is the easiest way to cut the chances of choosing to eat something unhealthy on a whim. Here are a few essential tips that make it easier to stay trim by following a simple food plan.
- Shop for groceries once a week. Make a shopping list and stick to it. It is always a good idea to buy fresh products with little or no preservatives or additives. One good tip is to steer clear of temptation—stick to the outer perimeter of the grocery store because this is where the fresh foods are.
- Invest in quality containers. Meal prepping means that you will be cooking once or twice a week, and the food has to keep you for the rest of the time. For this you need quality containers to store your food. Stainless steel containers work well, as do lockable and spill-proof containers that are BPA-free.
- Make a pitcher of lemon and mint green tea, and keep it where it is visible in your refrigerator. More often than not when you think you are hungry, what you are actually responding to is your thirst. The catechins in green tea help to keep your waistline slim, and keep your hunger pangs at bay.
- Eggs are your friend. For days when even 5-ingredient meal prepping sounds like too much, you can bank on eggs. Hard-boil a few eggs, and leave them in the fridge. Enjoy this low-calorie, high-protein meal with a side of seasoning, carrot sticks, or guacamole.
Last but not the least; remember to bring along the meals you have prepped. They will do you absolutely no good if you forget them at home, and end up eating something unhealthy on-the-go. Plan your meal prep time, and stock up on what you need to stay trim—it is well worth the time you will invest. Set a reminder to grab them before you and enjoy!
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