Ah, Lunchtime. The morning flies by and then, BAM, it’s time to take our lunch break. If you are like most people these days, you are too busy to think about how to do lunch right and you end up settling for what is quick and easy. The problem with quick and easy, is it USUALLY means unhealthy and void of any real nutrition.
But what if quick and easy COULD also mean healthy and nutritious? So before you ask yourself ” What should I have for lunch? ” take a look at some of these ideas to maximize your meal!
Pre-cook The Weeks Lunch On Sunday
Write down the 5 things you would LOVE to eat for lunch, and if possible, pre-cook them and freeze them for the upcoming week. Yes it might take you 1 or 2 hours to do on your Sunday, but at least you have FULL control over your lunches for the next 5 days. They will be super easy to grab in the morning and take with you!
Change It Up
We tend to stray from our diet when we keep eating the same boring food! Make sure you are changing it up from time to time so you are not getting sick of your fav healthy meals. Swap out different colored veggies and fruits to keep you visually dialed into your lunch, as well as textures. Mix up wraps, soups, salads, stews, sandwiches and shakes to keep it interesting!
Feel Full Longer
Make sure your lunch is packing enough punch to get you through the day! Not enough mid day will leave you feeling light-headed, unable to concentrate and maybe even a little ‘Hangry’. Too much on your plate will leave you bloated and tired. So what rules of thumb should you follow? Aim for 400-600 calories at lunch time and at least 25% of that should be lean protein. This will help fuel you and keep you feeling full until dinner. Studies show that if you are eating a well balanced meal at lunch, then you are less likely to overeat at supper.
Make Restaurants A TREAT, Not A Norm
Having lunch with your friends or collegues at a restaurant is always a tempting idea because the food is to die for and the atmosphere sure beats your cubical. Only there are a few major problems with making this a habit. The average sit down restaurant lunch contains just over 1,000 calories (the salads are usually the WORST on the list!) and at the end of the month your pocketbook will be feeling the pressure. If you want to socialize at lunch, get someone else on your ‘bring a lunch to work’ program and go eat it in a nearby park.
Food And Fitness
If you have a truly demanding schedule, lunchtime may be the only time you can squeeze in some exercise. If you are looking to torch some cals on your break, then consider eating something very light first, like a handful of nuts and berries, before working out. Then right after is a great time to eat the rest of your meal or have a meal replacement shake with an added banana, tablespoon of peanut butter or strawberries!
Try THESE healthy meal ideas for lunch
– Chicken Hummus Wrap.
Whole wheat wrap, chicken breast, garlic hummus, avocado, alfalfa, tomato, romaine lettuce, with a side of watermelon!
– Lentil Salad.
Cooked lentils, red onion, sliced oranges, celery, olive oil, red wine vinegar, salad greens, with a side of toasted pita
– Tuna Pita & Arugula Salad.
White tuna, light mayo, whole wheat pita, romaine, arugula, pine nuts, tomato, olive oil, vinegar
– Shrimp Skewers over Greens.
Couscous, slided almonds, cooked seasoned shrimp, salad greens, steamed broccolo, with a side of cubed melon!
– Grilled Chicken, Bean, Spinach Salad.
Spinach, mushrooms, black beans, red onion, tomatoes, bell pepper, cucumber, lemon juice, grilled chicken, olive oil, hot sauce, with a side of strawberries!
– Chicken and Goat Cheese Wrap.
Goat cheese, whole wheat tortilla, chicken breast, salad greens, avocado, with a side of papaya
– Grilled Chicken & Chickpea Salad.
Salad greens, tomatoes, mushrooms, cucumber, chickpeas, red peppers, broccoli, chicken breast, olive oil, red wine vinegar with a side of whole wheat pita
– Vegetable Soup & Roast Beef Sandwich.
Mustard, whole wheat bread, roast beef, mozzarella cheese, lettuce, tomato, cup of veggie soup.
– Black Bean Soup & Salad.
Salad greens, goat cheese, cucumber, jicama, carrot, olive oil, black bean soup, salsa.
Shakeology in Chocolate, Vanilla or Strawberry with almond milk, handful of berries and some nut butter!