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Top time-saving nutrition tips for busy people



Do you ever feel like there’s just not enough hours in the day? Juggling a work-life balance can make it seem like you have no time to focus on making healthy choices. In this blog article, I share some nutrition tips to help you when you're pushed for time.


No time to cook?


If you often arrive home late from a busy day at work with little time to cook, you’re not alone. According to a 2019 survey, 85% of respondents chose to dine out occasionally, including 27% who ate or bought dinner away from home at least once a week (1).


For many of us, it has become harder to make meals from scratch because of our busy, ‘no time to cook’ lifestyles. The easy availability of prepared meals, limited cooking facilities to make healthy lunches in the office, and the need to grab something on the go can mean it’s easy to choose processed foods that tend to be high in fat, sugar and salt.


Eating well


Today’s hectic lifestyle makes the need to eat well even more important. Along with exercise and stress management, your food choices can make a difference to how you feel. To avoid fatigue, get the most from your day, and optimise your health, eating well is essential. In fact, studies have shown that people who prepare food at home eat less saturated fat, less salt, and more fruit and vegetables (2).


Here's some of my top tips for staying on track when you're pushed for time.


Top nutrition tips when you’re flat out!


  • Plan your week

Take 10 minutes each week to plan your meals for your week ahead. Look up some quick and easy recipes online and schedule in which meals you’re going to make when.


  • Shop smart

Make a list of all the ingredients you need for your weekly grocery shopping. This will help you to know exactly what you need in your kitchen. To save you even more time, you could organise your list in order of the supermarket aisles. Alternatively, supermarket home delivery can be a lifesaver when you’re running short on time.


  • Batch and freeze meals

Try and make the most of your days off by making larger amounts of meals than you need and storing portions in the fridge for leftovers, or pop them in the freezer. Soups, curries, casseroles and stews are ideal to freeze. That way when you’re running low on food you’ll always have a healthy meal on hand. You can also batch cook grains so that it's easy for you to base your meals on these throughout the week.


  • Buy canned foods

When you're time poor, canned foods can be a quick and easy way to add in some protein to your meals. Chickpeas, lentils and beans are great options. Just drain, rinse and pop them into your favourite salads or soups. Canned fish, such as tuna or salmon are also versatile options and can be added to any meal or snack.


  • Choose frozen fruit and vegetables

Frozen fruit and vegetables are cheap and easy to store in the freezer. They're as nutritious as fresh varieties and contribute to your five-a-day portions. Just don't overcook the veggies!


  • Get ahead!

Pressure cookers and slow cookers are great gadgets to have if you're low on time. You can create delicious meals ahead of time and catch up on other tasks while your pressure cooker is doing its thing!


  • Find some balance

If you find it challenging to manage your portion sizes at mealtimes, aim to divide your plate into 4 quarters. Fill 1 quarter with lean sources of protein, another quarter with high-fibre carbohydrate foods and pack the other 2 quarters (half of your plate!) with salad or cooked vegetables.


  • Store your snacks

If you find yourself getting hungry in between meals, keep some healthy snacks in your bag or desk drawer. Good options include small portions of unsalted nuts, seeds, dried fruit and pots of chopped fruit in juice.


If you'd like more meal planning ideas or some personalised support, I’d

love to support you on your journey! Please feel free to connect with me so that I can

help create an individual plan for you.


You can click on the link here to organise your free 20-minute Discovery Call, or you can also email me here: laura@nurture-for-life.com


References


  1. NatCen Social Research (2019) The Food and You Survey Wave 5: Combined report for England,Wales and Northern Ireland. Available at: https://www.food.gov.uk/sites/default/files/media/document/food-and-you-wave-5-combined-report.pdf

  2. Mills, S. et al, (2017) Frequency of eating home cooked meals and potential benefits for diet and health: cross-sectional analysis of a population-based cohort study. International Journal of Behavioural Nutrition and Physical Activity. 14 (109). DOI: 10.1186/s12966-017 0567-y.

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