Lunches: What Are You Choosing?
Do you find yourself eating out for lunch? Do you choose healthier options for lunch? Learning to stay healthy throughout the day can be a very simple task. With the fast pace lifestyle that most people lead now-a-days, eating lunch is typically a very rushed process. People have one hour to drive to their destination, wait in a busy line, eat their food, and drive back to their office. All too often, rushed lunch hours tend to lead to fast decisions that can dramatically change your diet on a daily basis. So you have to ask, am I hurting or benefiting myself with my daily lunch decisions? Here are a few key items you can do to maximize your lunch hour.
- Look for the “healthy options” side of the menu. Typically they target these items to be lower in fat, higher in protein, and lower in overall calories. Try to stay away from the high fat and/or fried foods
- Watch out for the salads! Yes, salads can be nutritious for you, but what about the toppings? Omit toppings such as croutons, bacon, processed meats, and ask for a light dressing on the side
- Do not be afraid to substitute bad side items for its healthier counterpart. Ask for grilled or steamed vegetables instead of the fried or processed sides. Little changes make a HUGE difference
- Avoid Fast Food chains! These are amongst the unhealthiest food products you can allow in your body. Processed meat, fillers, grease, chemically made products and food with virtually no expiration date. How can this be healthy by any standards?
- Keep healthy snacks at work throughout the day. Going to lunch hungry gives you a higher chance of choosing a high calorie item. Keeping snacks such as almonds, protein bars and/or protein supplement will help satisfy your appetite throughout the workday
- Search for key words! The menu may have a “healthy” name such as “chicken breast” or “grilled fish,” but watch for key words such as “butter sauce” or “creamy.” These sauces tend to be very high in calories and fat and can sabotage your dietary goals
- Prepare your own lunches. Most people will call this “Meal Prepping.” This is where you dedicate a few hours out of one day a week, and prepare your lunches throughout the week. This allows you to get creative with your dishes and gives you the added benefits of knowing exactly what ingredients are in your meals. This is also an excellent disciplinary tool that will even lead you to planning out other events in your life.
- If time is limited or you have the type of job that requires you to be “on the road”, plan ahead such as reviewing the menu of restaurants you like to frequent on the internet. Decide on the best meal for your diet and this will save you time when you arrive at the restaurant.
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