I am very happy to introduce my first ever series here on Food Wine Thyme. If you haven’t figured it out by the title of this post, Brown Baggin It The Healthy Way will be geared towards preparing healthy and delicious lunches. So many times healthy habits get thrown out of the window because we simply forget to do a little prep work. Mornings can be hectic. You’ve got alarms, schedules, kids, pets or maybe even the snooze button that got hit too many times. Next thing you know its lunch time again and you find yourself ordering with the crowd. Probability that its something unhealthy is pretty high. And there is that big question mark on who knows how that food was prepared and what kind of ingredients went into it. Eating healthy and loosing weight may sometimes seem like it’s too much work, in reality, if you develop a routine and stick with it, it won’t seem that way at all. I think you might be surprised and find that it’ll actually make you feel pretty good.
Before I share my first lunch recipe, I wanted to put together a few tips on what works for me and how you can save some time throughout the week.
1. FILL YOUR FRIDGE AND PANTRY WITH GOOD FOR YOU FOODS
- Eliminate white bread and replace it with whole grain breads.
- Get rid of butter, replace it with healthy spreads and learn how to use Extra Virgin Olive Oil.
- Cut out processed sugar. Substitute with honey, maple or agave syrup.
- STOP drinking soda and increase your water intake. Carry a water bottle with you everywhere and take small sips.
- Substitute regular milk for Almond Milk or skim milk
- Replace white rice for brown rice, quinoa or other good for you grains. Switch from regular pasta to whole grain variety.
2. LEARN HOW TO READ NUTRITION LABELS
- Watch out for processed ingredients, fillers, sugar, MSG and other preservatives
3. STOP MINDLESS SNACKING
4. PREPARE IN ADVANCE
- Take some time on the weekend and prep. Boil eggs if you like a hard boiled egg for breakfast, chop garlic and store in an air tight container if you’re going to need it during the week, peel onions and keep them ready in a zip lock bag.
- Make a list of what your lunches and dinners are going to be for that week. Prepare a list of what you need at the grocery store. Do all the shopping. Not only will this save you time but it’ll money as well as you won’t be picking up extra food items that you don’t need but you wanted because you were hungry and you were at the store again.
5. REWARD YOURSELF
- Just don’t overdo it. If the chocolate cake is calling your name, then have a little, but don’t sit down and eat the entire cake.
I know that with a little dedication and some preparation, you’ll be amazed at how much better you will feel. I hope that you enjoy this post. Let me know your thoughts and if you’d like to see more of it in the future.
I made this great salad and had it over salad greens at work. Not only did it fill me up, but all the colorful ingredients brightened my mood.
So colorful, yet so good for you.
Looks delicious, doesn’t it?
Chickpea & Roasted Red Pepper Salad
Author: Kathy Steger
- 1 15 oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 cucumber, cubed
- 4 marinated roasted red pepper slices, chopped
- 1 celery stalk, cubed
- 1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
- 1 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
- 2-3 tbsp low fat italian dressing
- pepper to taste
- Combine all ingredients in a bowl.
- Add dressing and mix well.
- Adjust seasoning if necessary.
- Serve over mixed greens with tomato chunks.