Using willpower to try and eat healthy just doesn’t work. When we are hungry, tired, stressed, craving something, or unprepared, willpower just won’t be enough to stop us reaching for the first thing we see. The trick to sustained healthy eating is to set aside a little bit of planning and prep time once to twice a week, so that the rest of the week we don’t actually have to exert any willpower, we just have to follow the plan! When healthy options are right there ready to go, that’s what you are going to choose effortlessly.
After a big day, cooking is going to feel like too big an ask. Plan to have the ingredients right there ready to go, and choose simple and quick recipes where prep time will be little more than driving to pick up takeaway. Fresh vegetables can be chopped ahead of time and frozen of stored in the fridge to snack on, or throw into meals, salads, or as sandwich toppers.
FRIDGE: With storage times
Canned beetroot (after opening): 3-4 days
Canned corn (after opening): 3-4 days
Canned legumes (after opening): 3-4 days
Chopped onion: 7-10 days
Grated/chopped carrot: up to 7 days
Celery: 1-2 weeks
Baby spinach leaves: 4-7 days
Snow peas: up to 7 days
Green beans: 3-5 days
Chopped mushrooms: 5-7 days
Chopped capsicum: 1-3 days
Whole fruit is the perfect mid meal snack, fresh fruit chopped up can be added to cereals, made into a fruit salad, added to baking, or quickly stewed for warm desserts.
READY TO GO: Grab straight from the fruit bowl, or bring with you for a handy ready to eat snack.
Punnet of strawberries
FRIDGE: With storage times
Watermelon: 3-5 days
Rockmelon/honeydew melon: 3-5 days
Pineapple: 3-4 days
Tinned peaches (after opening): 5-7 days
Most fruits freeze well, and frozen berries are a great source of antioxidants. Throw into smoothies for a nutrient dense breakfast or post workout snack.
Portion large tubs of yoghurt into single serves in airtight small containers for the more budget aware, or buy single serve tubs. A glass of low fat milk with a piece of fruit is a great pre/post exercise or mid meal snack with good amounts of carbohydrate and protein.
200g yoghurt (3/4 cup)
2 slices (40g) light cheese
1 cup milk
1/2 cup ricotta
200g light custard
Home made low sugar muesli slice, fruit muffins, savoury muffins with hidden veggies, pastry free healthy quiche, boiled eggs, protein balls. All great quick meal replacements or snacks (just watch the calories, even healthy baked goods can be higher in energy than you would think). Most baked goodies freeze well, so cook up a big batch and then pull out a couple for the week and throw the rest in the freezer for weeks to come.