Nowadays, many people are so consumed with work that they neglect their diet and health. Many people feel that they no longer have the time or money to buy ingredients to cook a wholesome meal that meets their energy and nutritional requirements. However, obesity, diabetes, hypertension, kidney stones, and chronic fatigue syndrome are some things that await you if you don’t mend your diet and nutrition ways. Also, the key to maintaining good performance and productivity at work is balanced and healthy meals every day. You need to consume the right amount of calories and servings of essential vitamins. How can you pull it off even if you’re a busy person?
1. Determine your daily calorie intake
The USDA’s average calorie intake recommendations and calorie calculators only serve as general guides and estimates. However, each person’s body and level of activity differs, which means the actual calories that each person needs may vary. Ageing, changes in lifestyle or jobs, and metabolism also cause your daily calorie intake to evolve. If you want to have a more informed idea of how many calories you will need, set an appointment with a nutritionist.
2. Keep track of what you eat
If you aim to trim inches off your waist or sugar from your diet, you need to monitor your eating habits. To track what you are eating, all you need is a pen and notebook (or a meal tracking app). Write down what you ate during the day, the amount of food you ate, and the time you ate a particular food item. For instance, you can write:
August 19, Monday
Three pieces of apple for breakfast (6:30 AM)
one plate of baked salmon with sweet potatoes (12:00 PM)
CHEAT – glazed doughnut for snacks (4:00 PM),
4 oz steak with rice for dinner (8:00 PM)
grapes for a midnight snack (12:00 AM)
Note the meals you eat for at least a week or two. Then, you can bring these data with you when you consult with your nutritionist. Your nutritionist would likely ask you of the level of activeness you have, which they would then compare to your week-long data. Your nutritionist would then contrast the amount and types of food you eat versus your other body, health, and activity data. From their observations and calorie calculations, your nutritionist can make specific recommendations as to the amount and types of food that you need to reduce. They may also tell you the vitamins and minerals you lack in your body.
3. Plan your meals
Based on your nutritionists’ recommendations, design a weekly meal plan that you have to follow. Included in the meal plan are:
Your menu for the whole week
The days and times of the week to go shopping for ingredients
For example, if your nutritionist tells you to cut back on sweets, you can buy fruits such as bananas or blueberries, which are rich in potassium and Vitamin C, respectively. These fruits can serve as substitutes for carbs-rich pastries and candies. You can also use a blender to make fruit shakes (but don’t add any sugar!) as an alternative to sodas. Fruits are easy to buy and prepare. You can store them in the freezer and take them out as needed in your meal plan. You only need to set aside an hour or two of your Saturdays or Sundays to create a meal plan.
4. Prepare and store your meals ahead
You have refrigerators and microwave ovens that you can use to prepare healthy meals your nutritionist recommended. You can also store your food in resealable packs or containers that you can grab and go. Use your meal plan as a guide to the foods you need to prepare and store in advance. This would ensure that your dietary requirements are still met, even though you are busy.
No matter how busy you may get with work, you must never neglect your health. Follow the tips above to maintain a healthy and balanced diet.
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