Guide to Meal Prep
Have you heard about “meal prepping” but have no idea what it is or how to do it? Well you’re not alone. Many people don’t have a full grasp of the concept. Even if you know about meal prepping, this article may help you broaden your ideas surrounding it.
What is Meal Prepping?
SImply put, it’s just preparing your meals ahead of time. You can plan for the next 2, 3, 4 , or 5 days ahead. It really depends on the shelf life of what your’re cooking and your own taste buds. Some people can eat the same thing every day and not get bored. Others need to switch it up. I prefer to prepare for 3 days. In general, I would say a meatless entree can last up to 5 days. Ground turkey or chicken can last up to 4 days. Fish and other seafood up to 3 days. You’ll need to keep all your meals refrigerated. Another option is freezing prepared items and cooking them at a later date.
What Should I Cook?
You can really cook whatever you’d like, but I would suggest setting yourself up for success by cooking healthy options with a good mix of macronutrients. What are macronutrients or “macros”? They are the 3 types of food energy sources: Protein, Carbohydrates, and Fats. Fruits and Vegetable are considered to be carbohydrates. If you are looking for a grain carbohydrate, then I would suggest: brown rice, whole grain pasta, quinoa, or oatmeal. For proteins you want to choose lean proteins such as: eggs, fish, skinless chicken or turkey, lean ground turkey or beef, and very lean beef. Non animal proteins such as beans, lentils, and quinoa, are also good options. For fats you want to choose the “good” fats versus the “bad” fats. The good fats include things like: fish oil, olive oil, pecans, walnuts, natural almond/peanut butter, and avocados. Once you’ve decided on which macros you’d like to eat, prepare them however you’d like. You can bake, boil, pan sear, grill, or roast your foods with fresh herbs and seasonings of your choice. I would stay away from adding sauces or marinades that you haven’t made from scratch or that contain any preservatives or ingredients that you can’t pronounce.
How Much Do I Eat?
Knowing how to portion out your meals is another important part of meal prepping . I would suggest getting a few disposable tupperware containers like the ones in the images or you can get a higher grade meal prep container from FItmark (You can get 10% off by using code BRITTANY 15). For the average person looking to gain some lean muscle and lose body fat, I would recommend 30% protein, 30% grain carbs, and 40% vegetables. If you are looking to bulk up a bit then I would switch to 60% protein, 40% vegetables and/or gain carbs. If you are looking to try and lean out a little more than I would suggest 60% Vegetables ( Sweet Potatoes are included) and 40% protein.
In conclusion, meal prepping is just a way to prepare yourself to make healthier food choices throughout the week. Decide what macro breakdown works best for your body and your goals, choose what you’d like to eat, go to the grocery store so that you have all of the ingredients, cook, and portion out your meals. SImple as that! “If you fail to plan for success, you are planning to fail. “- Benjamin Franklin.
Why meal plans suck? https://www.precisionnutrition.com/meal-plans-usually-suck -Precision Nutrtition