29 Aug 5 Meal Prep Diet Mistakes You Might Be Making
Whether you want to lose weight or save money on snacks and meals out, the meal prep diet is becoming an increasingly popular choice for many people.
While some people are put off by the time and effort required, it’s one of the most reliable methods of having a cost-effective healthy diet from Monday to Friday.
And yet, many people make mistakes when they first switch to the meal prep diet. They find that they are not satisfied with what they’re eating, or that they’re not reaping the benefits that the meal prep diet promised.
Keep reading to find out about the most common mistakes people make. If you know these 5 mistakes you might be making with your meal prep diet, you can avoid them in the future. Let’s take a look.
1. Prepping Too Much or Too Little
It’s not easy to estimate how much or how little you need for each meal. There’s always the possibility that you prep either too much or too little.
The danger of making too much is that you either eat more than you need or you throw away the rest.
If you’re eating more than you need then you’re not being healthy. And if you don’t eat the food you prepared, then it’s costly and wasteful.
On the other hand, if you’re not prepping enough for to last you the entire week, you’ll run out by Wednesday. Then you’ll be back to expensive take-outs and salty snacks to supplement your diet.
When you first start the meal prep diet, you find that it can be difficult to know how much food you require per meal. But don’t continue to prep random amounts of food with thinking carefully about the right quantity.
Once you have been prepping food for a while, you will know how much you need to last you until Friday. By then, you can start to measure out the right amounts.
And if you occasionally go over the amount you need for the week, you can always put meals in the fridge or freezer. Most food keeps up to a week. Grains last three months while fruits and vegetables can last as a long as a year in the freezer.
It may take more time to get the right amount of food for the week, but it’s surely worthwhile in the end.
2. Prep Food You Want to Eat
When starting the meal prep diet you might try to experiment with some super healthy foods. We’ve all been there.
You persuade yourself that you’re going to eat it, lose weight and enjoy it too. And then, in the moment of truth, you can’t manage to eat that fennel and broccoli salad. And instead, you opt to purchase an expensive fried chicken sandwich from the shop down the street.
This is a costly and wasteful habit.
Although it’s good to eat healthy, don’t make yourself eat something you hate just because it’s good for you. Especially if you don’t end up eating it at all anyway.
Instead, pack your meals with healthy and delicious ingredients that you like to eat so that you can’t wait to dig into your lunch.
3. Maintain a Balanced Diet
The meal prep diet can really help you to maintain a balanced diet. That means a healthy mix of protein, complex carbohydrates, healthy fat, and vegetables.
If you don’t fill your meals with the right balance of carbohydrates and protein, you may experience all kinds of side-effects from fatigue to weight gain.
You may also consider tweaking your diet to achieve your goals. For example, to increase muscle or lose weight consider including a higher portion of protein into your meals.
The best way to ensure you have the balanced diet is to prepare all of your ingredients at the same time. If you still need to roast a chicken breast to make up your balanced diet, then you may be inclined to skip it.
4. Mix Up Your Ingredients
Coming up with creative, interesting and delicious meals to eat every day can be challenging. However, eating the same thing every day can be very boring as well. A salad of lettuce, tomato, and cucumber gets dull after a while.
You can make your meals more interesting by planning ahead. For instance, when you’re prepping your vegetables for the week, don’t just prep carrots and peas for every day. Cook a variety of vegetables and place them in separate containers to mix up your meals throughout the week.
5. Get a Freezer and Containers for Your Meal Prep Diet
If you are going to take the meal prep diet seriously then there are two things that are essential – a freezer and some containers.
The first is a wide range of containers to store your meals. If you only have a few containers to store meals, you are limiting the amount you can prepare at any one time.
They need to be the right size as well. If they are too large, you’ll be tempted to eat more than you need and gain weight. One method to avoid this is to buy containers with specific measurements so you don’t overfill your meals.
You need quality containers with good seals to prevent your food from going stale. This may depend on lifestyle as well. For instance, if you have a long commute to work, consider purchasing a cooler that keeps your food chilled on the way to work.
The second essential item is a large freezer for storing your meals. A freezer allows you to prep a lot more food in advance. Plus, it keeps many perishable foods, such as chicken, fresh for much longer periods of time.
Whether you’re prepping to lose weight, or simply want to save money – don’t be disheartened. The meal prep diet may take some getting used to, but it’s worthwhile in the end. Avoid these mistakes by following our advice and your new diet won’t let you down.