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Time Saving Tips for Healthy Eating

Metro Detroit Mommy Blogger Theresa Walker – BeachBody Coach

If you are a busy mom who wants to eat healthy, fresh foods,
then you, like myself might find this a stretch some days.  It’s hard enough to find time to get the kids
off to school, run all the errands, keep up on housework, help with homework,
attend all the kids events…the list goes on. 
So I’d like to share some of the tips I’ve learned over the years that
have helped myself and my family to eat healthfully, even on the busiest
days.  Some of these you may have heard
before, but I’m hoping you can find something new that might help you as it has
helped us.

Buy fruits and veggies in bulk and pre-cut what you can for
the week.  Usually twice a week I’ll pull
some out to wash, chop and seal in a ziplock bag or container.  Then when it’s time to make lunches or
dinners or you are looking for a quick snack, you’ve got fast easy go-to
CROCK POT- The crock pot is a busy person’s best
friend!  If you don’t own one, go get one
now.  They are affordable, and after your
first dinner made, you will be wondering why you haven’t done this before.  My favorite crock pot recipe book series is
called Fix It and Forget It.  They hold
hundreds of recipes for the crock pot, many of my favorites come from those
books.   You may also want to invest in
the slow cooker liners as well, these are a few dollars for a box of 5 and save
the time on clean up. 

Meal planning- It sounds simple, but often it falls by
the wayside, I know I am at fault here. 
But it really does help to plan your meals for the week.  Set up a wipe board in kitchen/on the fridge and every week fill it in.  That way you are never scrambling at 6pm with
nothing defrosted trying to figure out what is for dinner.  You can even get the kids involved and let
everyone choose a meal.

Keep healthy snacks in the car.  Some days you may not plan on being home so
late from work or from running errands, but by keeping simple healthy snacks in
your car like almonds, granola bars, pop corn or trail mix, you won’t find
yourself running to 7-11. 
FREEZER MEALS- Meals made and prepared to go straight to
the freezer and then pulled out through-out the week for a time-saving healthy
dinner, are what many busy moms are doing these days.  Thanks to google and Pinterest you can find
hundreds of freezer meal recipes at your finger-tips in minutes.  It may take some time initially to prepare,
dice, and measure out the ingredients, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll
find the initial time spent is well worth it. 
And then you will have a stocked freezer full of meals you can pull out
through-out the week and cook in your crock pot or oven and take the stress off
of your week-night meals! 
Buy a veggie steamer (I have one from Tupperware) and use
it!  Ziplock even sells steaming
bags.  Couple minutes in the microwave
and voila!  Easy side dish to go with
Explore the grocery store and find some healthy, yet easy
prep meals. Here are some of the items I’ve found help me out quite a bit for
fast, yet healthy dinners:
Butterball Turkey breast; I just place it in the crock
pot with some broth, approximately 5 hours later it’s done.  
Perdue whole chicken roaster in a bag, preseasoned.  All you do is place in roasting pan in oven,
cut slit in bag and let it cook for 90ish minutes, or until thermometer reads
180 F. 

Jennie-O Cook from frozen turkey burgers; these are
amazing because you can pull them out anytime you need them.  

Trident Salmon Patties, again, cooks right from frozen.

Microwavable rice pouches, Uncle Ben’s makes some whole
grain and wild grain options.  I know
there is debate on cooking in these bags, but currently for our family, some
nights we need something like this that is fast.  Better than the boxed dehydrated potatoes I
used to buy in cheesy sauce. 
Trader Joes crab stuffed flounder, defrosts in fridge or
fast defrost submerge in hot water, cooks 25 minutes in oven.
Trader Joes Mojito Salmon- cook from frozen or
defrost/cook.  60-25 mins in oven
Trader Joes egg rolls and won ton soup.  Egg rolls go in the oven for about 20 mins,
won ton cooks in microwave for 5 mins, add some steamed veggies and dinner is
Obviously, one thing to note with most “fast”
pre-packaged dinners, is to read the labels! 
Most are full of fat, sugar and sodium. 
There are more that are on the healthier side like those I’ve mentioned
above I’m sure, if you have one you’d like to share, I’d love to know about it!       
Last but NOT least; think EASY!  I know we all love Pinterest and the fancy or
unique recipes, but when you keep food simple, it’s usually healthy!  You don’t need to make yourself anything
elaborate for dinner, because the more ingredients, the more calories.  A good example can be a salad, I like having
a salad for lunch, but sometimes by the time I add on my chicken, chick peas,
an egg, some tomatoes, cucumbers, sunflower seeds, hmmm, what about some dried
cranberries and feta….well you can see where this is going!  All of those ingredients are healthy, but
they all pack a big calorie punch.  Next
thing I know, I’ve made a 500 calorie salad, before even adding dressing!  The same can be true with dinner.  You find a yummy looking chicken casserole,
take a look at EVERYTHING inside it.  Add
it up, you may be surprised at how many calories you are eating.  So instead, get back to basics!  A roasted chicken, brown rice and
asparagus.  A turkey burger, sweet potato
fries and some broccoli.  Pork roast,
baked potato and green beans.  Elaborate
recipes are fun, but often they take time, ingredients add up in cost AND
calories.  If most of your meals are
prepared simply, with seasonings or a light sauce, you’ll be making a big
impact on your diet.  Once you find some
“simpler” or lighter recipes, rotate! Soon you will have a go-to list to shop
with and the question “what’s for dinner” answered!
If you have tips that have helped you save time while
eating healthy, please share them in the comments section!  I’d love to hear your ideas or comments.  And if you have a suggestion for a future
blog, I’d also love to incorporate it. 
Thanks for reading!    

Theresa Walker 
Theresa is a wife and stay at home mother of 2 energetic boys, DJ (8) and Aiden (5). She has a bachelors in Communications and prior to being a mother she worked at Better Investing magazine in advertising and as a Corporate Account Manager. These days she is fortunate enough to spend time with her boys checking out all of the local fun there is to be had. She and her family love to travel. She is also active in a large online mom’s group through Facebook that she started called Planet Mom. She enjoys being active and one of her proudest accomplishments was running the Detroit Half Marathon as well as the Romeo to Richmond Half. In her free time you can find her running or biking through Stony Creek. Or curled up on a couch with a good book and her cat in her lap. She recently became a BeachBody Coach, so that she could share her love for health and fitness with others to help them reach their personal goals. You can find her Facebook page at Inspired Health & Fitness. She considers herself a “Fit Foodie” and loves trying new recipes, experimenting and new restaurants around town. She hopes she can share some of her tips for healthy eating and exercise for busy moms and Metro Detroit Mommy Fans.

Theresa W
Author: Theresa W

Theresa is a wife and stay at home mother of 2 boys, David (13) and Aiden (10). Her hobbies include traveling, reading, running, cooking and volunteering at MI Humane Society with the adoptable cats. She also spends her free time serving as PTO President at her son's elementary school. She enjoys being active and is proud to have completed 4 marathons. She loves to share her passion for health and fitness with others.