So, you’ve decided you want to eat healthier. Maybe you want to fit into those old pair of jeans, have more energy, or if you’re like me, you received a startling health diagnosis. No matter your “why,” eating healthy is a challenge – especially for busy people like you and me.
After I was first diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, one of my treatment options was to “watch and wait.” Before resorting to chemo, I could give my body the opportunity to try to fight off the cancer itself. I went with this option, but knew I needed to give my body the best fighting chance. For this reason, my watch and wait period was dedicated to improving my health – starting with my diet.
Admittedly, my diet was horrendous before my diagnosis; eating healthy meant opting for Chick-fil-A rather than McDonald’s. Luckily, during my watch and wait period, I wasn’t working and had plenty of time to dedicate to eating better. I transitioned from fast food and unbalanced meals, to all organic food with plenty of antioxidants and nutrients.
It was actually kind of fun – shopping for ingredients and preparing healthy meals. It was a welcome challenge to take my mind off, and feel more in control of, my diagnosis. Unfortunately, we rarely have this much time and motivation to focus on our diets. In my case, once I was in remission and life went back to normal (read: busy), it became much more difficult to eat healthy.
Nonetheless, after cancer, my journey to better overall health has been my utmost priority, so I’ve managed to come up with ways to eat well on a busy schedule. If you’re also wanting to eat healthier, but struggle due to time constraints, read on for my top 3 tips for eating well on a busy schedule:
- Use meal delivery services. Companies such as Blue Apron and Green Chef deliver prepackaged meals to your door, which significantly cuts down on your meal prep time, while still being cost-conscious and healthy. My personal favorite, Green Chef, offers 6 USDA organic, GMO-free meals for $90. If you ordered the same quality meals from a restaurant, you’d pay much more than $15 per meal. Bonus: Meals can be ordered for up to a week at a time.
- Do your own meal prep. If you’re not sold on meal delivery services, consider doing it yourself. Pick 1 or 2 days of the week (Sundays and Wednesdays are popular choices) to mass produce your meals. Invest in some refrigerator, microwave, and dishwasher safe Tupperware to make your life easier. Doing your own meal prepping saves money and gives you more control over what you’re eating, but it does take quite a bit more time than using meal delivery services.
- Put food-related activities on your schedule. Whether you’re meal prepping, grocery shopping, choosing your Green Chef meals for the week, or eating a snack or meal, it’s important to make time for it! You wouldn’t leave an important meeting off your calendar, so don’t leave your food-related activities out either. Your diet deserves your attention, just as much as your meetings. If it’s in your schedule, you’re more likely to stick to it.
Hopefully, now, you’re feeling at least a bit more motivated and prepared to squeeze healthy eating in your busy schedule. For more practical tips on healthy living, check out my book “From Doctor to Patient” here.