Benefits of Meal Planning For Weight LossBy Sarah S – Jenny Craig
For many of us, eating away from home is just a reality of our busy schedules. Your weekly meal plan can be adjusted to fit changes in your lifestyle such as work or travel. Not only can having a plan can help you stay on track with your weight loss goals and healthy eating habits, it can also save you money.
Meal planning at work
- Plan the night before and have your meals and snacks packed and ready to grab on your way out the door. Reward yourself for making the effort to plan ahead by buying a new, fashionable lunch pack.
- Clean and cut veggies in advance for your salad and snacks.
- Make “overnight oatmeal”. Place uncooked oats, a few walnuts and a pinch of cinnamon in a jar and add just enough nonfat milk or water to cover. Then, put it in the refrigerator. In the morning at work all you will need to do is heat it up and top with fresh fruit for an energizing breakfast.
Meal planning on-the-go, on vacation, or while traveling
- Pack a cooler full of satisfying and healthy snacks such as apples, grapes, carrot sticks, nonfat yogurt and Jenny Craig snacks.
- On long road trips, stop every few hours for an exercise break to clear your mind and boost your metabolism. Plan a side trip to a state park for a quick hike.
- When the fast food drive-through is your only option in sight, choose kids size meals or ask for your burger protein-style (without a bun).
- Look for healthy foods at the convenient store. Scan the aisles for fresh fruit, low-fat cheese and cottage cheese, whole-grain sandwiches, low-sodium vegetable juice, unsweetened tea, and sparkling waters.
- At the airport, walk around the terminal while waiting for your flight. Wear a pedometer and set a goal of a minimum number of steps. Plan ahead to stay fit and pack resistance bands in your suitcase or look online to check if your hotel has a gym.
- Make time for a walking tour that your destination offers.
No matter where your busy schedule takes you, planning ahead can help you stay on track. Think of tomorrow or the week ahead, and take the time to prepare and plan with your weight loss goals in mind.
1. Flood JE, Rolls BJ. Appetite. 2007;49:626-634.