Whether you work in an office, home, or don’t work, eating right over the course of the day can be tough…but not impossible! I work in an office and bring my lunch to work everyday. Sometimes it’s tough to find the time to plan my menus and prepare for the week, but I prioritize and know it’s well worth the effort. Some of the reasons that keep me motivated include:
1. Buying lunch everyday adds up. If you’re spending around $10/day, 5 days a week, for 1 month, that equals $200 per month!
2. The food you buy in shops or restuarants is a mystery. You have no idea what your veggies are sauteed in (poor quality hydrogenated oils, etc), what kind of meat you’re being served, how old your salad and veggies are, and how many calories and fat are really in the food. I prefer to know what’s in my food, so I make it.
3. The tendency to overindulge is at its highest when you’re selecting your food from a menu. Even when you’re checking out on line, you’re tempted with numerous candy bars, chocolate, and other assorted junk food that you usually throw into the mix. If you’re at a restaurant, you’re likely to consume well beyond the normal portion size you need.
4. You usually fill boredom or restlessness at work with food and, in this case, you’re much more likely to go for comfort foods that aren’t the best for you or the vending machine snack that’s chock full of GMOs and poor quality ingredients, and devoid of any nutritional value.
Instead of eating out for lunch, bring your lunch and use your break to take care of yourself. Encourage your co-workers to do the same and sit and enjoy your lunches together and really catch up. Other things you can do if you lunch solo, can save you time throughout your day and maximize your productivity since we’re always so short on time.
1. Go for a walk – get your exercise in during lunch if you can’t get to the gym.
2. Budget your bank account, make any calls you need to get to, book appointments, or anything that’s a small task so you won’t have to do it after work or on the weekend.
3. Go grocery shopping for your next menu planning day or any small items that you need. This has been my secret weapon for saving time and staying stocked with my favorite produce. I work in a bustling city, but we have a Fairway and a Whole Foods that I frequent, so I don’t have to make the trip when I’m going home and I’m tired and hungry. You will be amazed at how useful this simple tip will be.
4. Meditate before you eat your homeade lunch. It will clear your mind, help you become more thoughtful about the food you’re eating, and relax you.
If you can’t make your lunch everyday, I highly recommend being very conscientious about where you buy your lunch. I always rely on my trusty Yelp app to direct me to the best places that serve the best Vegan selections. Whatever it is that you look to incorporate into your diet, you can search for it and find it in a listing on Yelp, in your vicinity. I have been so pleasantly surprised to find some wonderful Vegan spots that offer affordable, organic, fresh options that nourish me when I’m pressed for time and can’t bring my own food. ‘
Sometimes I’ll crave a snack, even if I brought lunch. In this case, I head over to Fairway or a local shop and get something healthy. I love Lara Bars (most are GMO free, Vegan, Kosher, Organic, and Gluten Free and will list it out on the front of the label), they also have less than 5 items in the ingredients. I love freshly ground almond butter from the grinders you see at your local grocery store. Kombucha drinks also rank high on my list. GT is my favorite brand and I think it’s worth the splurge (usually it’s around $4-5 per bottle). This drink promotes digestion and overall heath.
What do you like to do for your lunch options and how do you stay healthy about it?