Some individuals who are living alone have a poor, unhealthy diet, often relying on ready-made food without the key nutrients their body needs. A few of the reasons include lack of motivation, inadequate cooking skills, and just have no shopping buddy to enjoy the process.
What is even more alarming is that such people are not fully aware of the future impact of an unhealthy diet. One may not even know that there’s a huge difference between sitting down to eat a healthy meal and just grabbing an on-the-go lunch at their favorite restaurant.
As you get older, various health problems will arise. And one effective way to reduce the risks is to eat healthy. A good diet won’t just keep your mind sharp, but also fuel your body with the energy it needs to function well. Want to start eating healthy but don’t know where to start? Read on to learn how.
Revisit your pantry and fridge
An organized and clean pantry and a fridge can make cooking exciting and easy for you. When you open your fridge and pantry right now, what do you see? A bag of spinach from last week? Boxes of chocolates and unhealthy chips? Leftover slices of takeout pizza from last night? Pints of ice cream? If these are what you have, you need to start refilling and organizing them.
Toss what you don’t need and keep your unhealthy food or snacks out of sight. Always keep the healthiest ones in your eye line, from your veggies to your fruits. Don’t tuck your fresh vegetables and fruits away at the bottom of your fridge, or they will just go bad without you remembering they’re even there. For your pantry, it’s recommended to use baskets to leave the food in plain sight.
Meal plan and prep ahead
Creating a meal plan, preferably for one to two weeks, ahead is the best way to get the healthiest and tastiest meals for your body and your pocket. It will keep you motivated and organized to eating well and save you tons of time. A meal plan is also helpful in preventing you from eating the same food every day and with less likely waste on your end.
To start off, get inspired by searching for new and healthy recipes you can cook. You can check out recipes from your favorite local food blogger, a healthy diet cookbook, or ask your friend for ideas. Ideally, half your plate should have vegetables.
Make sure to also include a shopping day and always check what you currently have in your pantry and fridge before making the plan and shopping list. For a healthier option, include organic food in your meal plan. These food items don’t have chemical residue or toxic pesticides and are more nutritious than conventionally produced ones.
Limit the fresh produce
When you go grocery shopping always keep in mind that you are buying just for yourself so limit the fresh produce you buy. They quickly go bad and the last thing you want to see is wasted healthy food and money. They are not cheap. Purchase what you know you can eat for the week. Alternatively, you can opt for frozen vegetables and fruits that will last you longer. But if you prefer fresh ones, you can get groceries more often to get new ones every week or two.
Buy protein in bulk
You also need to be wise in buying your protein. Are you someone who opts for eggs and chicken as your main protein sources? Buy them in build. While chicken is not really cheap, you can seek sales or discounts and buy them in bulk. You can cut them to pieces and store them in freezer bags. This way, you can freeze the rest and just thaw when you want to eat. This is likely to be more budget-friendly than buying small portions every week. Plus, you readily have your protein in there when you need it. Other healthy proteins you can include in your shopping list are fish, beans, dairy products, tofu and soy, and nuts and seeds.
This is the day to stop eating convenience food and start making healthy meals that are truly good for your physical and mental health. Maintaining a healthy diet does not have to be expensive or exhausting, you just have to be smart and determined to live a healthier lifestyle for your own well-being. No matter your culinary skills, living situation, or your age, you can always learn to cook healthy and tasty on a budget. Take charge of your health right now by following these tips.