Shape My Plan Healthy Cooking Hacks
Eating healthy is one of the main ways to lose weight or fat. Most people think they can out exercise a bad diet, this may get you so far but, it will eventually catch up with you! Making shrewd decisions in the kitchen can drastically improve your results and lead to faster more effective weight loss.
Here’s a few handy cooking hacks to kick-start your weight loss journey, if you are looking to hit your fat loss goals quicker then here are a few tips to help you along the way.
Breakfast is vital, it really sets you up for the day but most people are just happy to skip it or grab something quick on the go. This is why it is important to make breakfast as fast as possible, this doesn’t mean slop up any old crappy meal. Instead, be prepared. Have a healthy meal prepared the night before, use the leftover veggies from dinner to combine with eggs in an omelette, or make porridge in the microwave. You call it, overnight oats are another awesome one to go with! But very importantly don’t spend an hour making up breakfast. This won’t be sustainable and won’t be fun and definitely won’t help you hit those weight loss goals.
Have simple “go-to” meals. Look around for easy recipes you like and healthy meals you can prepare with little effort. We have loads of quick easy meals and snacks in Shape My Plan, and batch cooking is definitely the priority of the day. Batch cook and freeze, take something out of the freezer in the morning on the way to work and it will be a delicious thawed meal for you to heat up that evening.
Start slow. Don’t rush into it, you may think you have found the perfect diet plan for weight loss but if it is too dramatic and demanding on you then it won’t be sustainable. Instead, aim to make one or two new meals in a week max. If you like one or the other or both then add it to your “go-to” meals list. This may be a lot of effort at the beginning but eventually you’ll have 10 or so simple meals to prepare that are good for you and you can perfect them to exactly how you like to eat them. Again the more of these meals you have the more it will lend itself to you achieving your fat loss goals.
Look for simple substitutions, swap in porridge for cornflakes, swap in sweet potato for normal potatoes, use greek yoghurt instead of the “low fat” versions.
Plan leftover meals, make big portions of something you like and freeze it for later or use it for lunch the following day. How awesome is it to make something so delicious and then knowing the next morning you have the leftovers to look forward to at lunchtime. Do this a few times and you’ll have a bank of meals that don’t need preparation. Getting home late from work and then have to leave again quickly? Well simple… take the meal you prepared out of the freezer in the morning, pop it in the microwave when you get home! Sorted!
Invest in a slow cooker or a portable crockpot. Prepare slow cooker meals that will take all day to cook, switch them on before you leave the house and you’ll have a nice warm healthy dinner ready when you get home. Alternatively, cook dinner the night before, pop it in a lunch box and use the crockpot you’ve left in work to heat it up and then you can have your dinner at lunchtime. Simple!
Don’t be afraid of smoothies, smoothies get a lot of bad press. Mainly because pre-made smoothies in shops have a) tonnes of added sugars and b) because they aren’t made fresh the sugars in the smoothies become more prominent the longer they are in the carton before consumption. But, if you have a blender/juicer at home such as a nutribullet you can make your own to eat in a rush. Just remember, use plenty of greens and maybe a scoop of protein to make the smoothie healthier and ensure it’s a good source of protein.
Roast your vegetables in a batch. They can be thrown quickly into any meal. Breakfast, lunch or dinner. They’re a great addition to any salad or as a side for your dinner. They’re also tastier than just plain lettuce leaf salads. Add meat and veg to a small salad with a portion of meat (fish, turkey or chicken) and top with a tablespoon of olive oil and there you have it. A healthy, well-balanced lunch that will keep you full and help to prevent that office snacking which can be so detrimental to fat loss!
Stock your cupboards. Have healthy foods, or the makings of healthy foods in your house. If making a processed frozen dinner is the easy option then we’ll be tempted to have it. But, if you have the ingredients to one of your go-to meals on hand all the time you’ll be more likely to make smarter choices. Have a massive spice rack of go-to spices, nothing worse than finding a really good simple recipe and then not having one of the ingredients.
Whether your goals are fat loss, muscle gain, improved sports performance or even just to stay healthy than eating healthy food becomes an essential part of your lifestyle. Hopefully, some of the tips above can help you along the way.