Try these easy-to-do steps to make your meals healthier
Other than makeup and beauty, one thing I’m passionate about is keeping a healthy meal plan. It’s not just for anything superficial but more about staying physically fit and mentally ready to accomplish all of my responsibilities as a wife, a mom, a CEO, a makeup artist, and a friend. Through the last 7 years of making better food choices, I’ve experienced a lot of positive changes physically, mentally, and even emotionally. You’d be surprised to know that your food intake actually affects not just how your body looks but also your mind’s sharpness and your overall mood!
Although working out is a great way to stay fit and get those endorphins pumping, it needs to be complemented by your meals. The whole concept is to ingest well-balanced, nutritious meals to sustain your day to day activities without leaving wastes such as excess fat or sugar. This isn’t about imposing strict zero-carb or intermittent diets, but a friendlier approach to start eating healthy.
I know that a lot of you get so overwhelmed by the planning part, even more than the food prep, so I came up with this list of easy steps you can take to start revamping your diet and create a healthy meal plan.
Breakfast Smoothie Bowls
Smoothie bowls are not just Instagram-worthy, but they’re packed with necessary nutrients too! It’s a great source of fiber, protein, healthy fats, and a good amount of carbohydrates to fuel you up for a busy day ahead. The best part is that it’s very easy to make. You’ll just need a variety of muesli, chia seeds, and almond milk, or any other unsweetened milk of your choice. Top it off with your favorite selection of fruits. I usually have mine with bananas and berries because they can boost digestion. Once you have your base ingredients in the pantry, it will only take a few minutes to whip up this healthy breakfast meal! Here’s my favorite mix:
2 frozen ripe bananas
1 cup of frozen strawberries
1 cup yogurt (plain and unsweetened)
1 cup muesli (a mix of raw oats, ground flax seeds, nuts, raisins)
½ cup almond milk
2 tsp honey
*Blend the honey, yogurt, 1 banana, half of the strawberries, and muesli into a puree. Pour it into a bowl and top with the rest of your fruits plus more muesli.
Go Heavy on Protein
If you are looking into toning your body, protein is the most important element that you need to incorporate in your diet. It’s the main nutrient that you need to build and retain muscles. The good news about protein is that you can get it from basically any type of meat– lean meat, poultry, fish, and other seafood. There are also hundreds of ways to prepare them to suit your tastebuds, but just remember to keep it clean. By that, I mean less oil, no sugar, and low in sodium. In place of the usual salt, you can use Pink Himalayan salt as it is proven to be healthier and fresher than other variants. For sweeteners, opt for raw honey instead of sugar.
I always make sure to get a good serving of protein in every meal especially because I lift weights. The most recommended amount is approximately 20 grams of protein pre-workout and 40 grams post-workout, together with 20-40 grams of good carbohydrates per meal. This formula gives me enough sustenance to power through a busy day plus a trip to the gym without feeling the need to binge on anything unhealthy.
You can prepare them in advance and pre-pack them in containers together with your serving of veggies, fruit slices, and some whole grains to create the perfect plate that covers all the nutrients you need. The best part is that it’s tasty and doesn’t build up on body fat!
50% Fruits and Veggies
Another easy tip to do is to switch half of your typical meal to fruits and vegetables. You’ll get the same satisfaction of being full, but with more nutritious components coming from greens and low-sugar fruits. They are packed with dietary fiber, which helps in keeping your liver clean while avoiding constipation and other digestive problems. What I love most is that they are an ideal source for vitamin C, folate, and potassium that will also reflect on your skin’s natural glow. Practice chopping up some veggies and drizzle a bit of vinaigrette, and set aside a portion of fruits for dessert as part of your packed lunch or dinner.
Don’t be scared of Whole Grains
There’s a common misconception among women that all types of grains must be avoided if you don’t want to gain weight, but let me just clear out that whole grains are a completely different story. Some examples of whole grains are brown rice, barley, oatmeal, whole-wheat bread, and even popcorn! This food group is packed with protein, fiber, antioxidants, B vitamins, and a lot of minerals that can help reduce the risks of digestive, liver, and heart problems. It can also aid in battling obesity and keep you lean while fueling your mind and body for any type of physical activity. You can easily cook up whole grains in batches and store them in your fridge (at high temperature) together with your proteins and veggies in one container. This way, you can just throw it in the microwave and heat it up before lunch or dinner. It’s advisable to keep your whole grains at one cup per serving to give you just the right amount of nutrients your body needs.
Learn how to incorporate protein shakes
If you workout on a regular basis, try incorporating protein shakes in your healthy meal plan. It’s a great pre-workout and post-workout meal that you can easily carry with you to the gym. This is also a good source of nutrients for people who are always on-the-go. A protein shake is basically like a smoothie bowl, pureed in a cup for easy consumption. Here’s my own concoction, which I whip up every time I have a loaded day ahead:
1 cup Ripple milk or any unsweetened nut milk
1-2 scoops of whey protein or protein of your choice
1 tsp collagen
2 tbsp ground flaxseed or chia seeds
½ cup wild berries
*This is best served frozen or with a ton of crushed ice to give you that refreshing instant meal.
Creating a healthy meal plan will go a long way in your fitness journey. This will not only benefit you now, but it will keep your body and organs functioning well in the years to come. Just remember to be consistent and keep your eyes on the prize! You will feel and see the results in no time. I hope you’ll find this helpful, beauties!
Have you tried any of these tips? Let us know through the comment section below!