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Meal Plan Guide

February 10, 2023

Meal Plan Guide

Meal Plan Guide

Meal planning offers many benefits, not only for your health and wellness but for your time and budget as well.

Meal planning is not as complicated as it seems. Once you get into the routine of doing it, it will become a very natural process.

To help you learn how to start doing it, I’m creating this meal planning guide to answer different questions about the whole process, and how you can create a meal plan that works for you.

Meal Plan Guide

As a nutritionist and a registered dietitian, I’m a huge fan of meal planning! I think it’s an amazing way to reach your healthy eating goals and make better food choices, lose weight, save money, reduce food waste, and more.

I’ll make sure to add my best tips for meal planning to this guide, so you can accomplish meal planning yourself. However, if you want extra help, let me introduce you to my signature program: Best Body.

With Best Body, you get:

  1. Creating your personalized meal plan – I walk you through creating a plan that specifically works for YOU – for your body’s needs, lifestyle, food preferences – during the week, on the weekend, during special events, etc. in video lessons.

  2. Simple meal planning – I make eating healthy SO EASY for you with the Best Body Meal Planner. Through my interactive meal planning tool with 1600+ simple meal, snack, and dessert options, you can either create plans based on what’s already in your fridge, or follow the plans I create each week.

  3. Weekly coaching calls – I’m so excited to bring you 2-3 group calls a week, where my amazing team of coaches and I will help you with any personal struggles, and answer all of your questions. Calls are at various days and times to accommodate schedules/time zones, and are recorded and uploaded to our private podcast, so you can listen anytime.

  4. Complete mindset training

  5. New tools each month

If that sounds like something you need, you can learn more about it and sign up here.

What Is A Meal Plan

A meal plan is a process of planning your meals ahead of time. It’s used for different purposes, such as weight loss, cholesterol improvements, eating healthy, saving money, etc.

Essentially, it means planning what you’ll be eating next week, or the next few days, so you can do grocery shopping in advance, be prepared for what you need to cook each day, and potentially also do meal prep if you want. Meal prep is preparing meals in advance, or at least certain ingredients and parts of meals, so you can simply heat them up during the week, and you have delicious meals ready to go.

Why Is Meal Planning Important

There are lots of benefits to meal planning. It can:

  • lessen your stress,

  • improve your health,

  • help you manage your time and money better,

  • save time,

  • help you lose weight,

  • help you reduce food waste,

  • make better food choices,

  • overall help you eat better and healthier food,

and more.

How To Meal Plan

Choose a day to do meal planning

First of all, you have to choose a day to do your meal planning. Most people prefer to do it over the weekend since they have more free time then.

One way you could structure your days is to do actual meal planning on Saturday, so you can go grocery shopping on Sunday. Or if you plan on doing meal prep as well, you can do that on Sunday as well.

So, you might want to do the actual planning part on Saturday, and write everything down.

If you need some inspiration to help you get started, download this 1500-calorie meal plan PDF and check out this free metabolic confusion meal plan.

Now let’s get into the actual tips.

Consider your schedule for the next week

When you start meal planning, consider your schedule for the week. Take into consideration the days you’ll be the busiest, and the days you’ll have more free time. If you know you’ll be super busy one day, plan a very quick and simple meal for that day. If you know you’ll have more free time, you can plan a more complex meal.

Also, knowing your schedule will allow you to know whether or not you’d benefit from preparing some meals (or parts of meals) in advance.

Choose your recipes

When you figure out how much time you’ll have each day, choose the exact recipes you’ll be making. Make sure your meals are balanced, and that they make sense together. Also, a great thing to do when meal planning, is to note which ingredients you’ll be using one day, so you can plan on using similar ingredients the next day as well. That will help with grocery shopping.

Note down important recipe details

Note down not only recipes but any important details about recipes. For example, if you plan on marinating your chicken in advance for a recipe, note that down, so you know when you need to do it, as it’s done in advance. Also, note down which kitchen tools you’ll need.

Plan your leftovers

If you plan on having leftovers, incorporate them into your meal plan. Tuesdays dinner can easily be turned into Wednesday’s lunch – it can be exactly the same, or parts of the dish can be used in a different dish.

Add everything to the shopping list

Once you know your recipes, make a full grocery list – don’t forget to include quantities of everything. By having a clear shopping list, you’ll make sure you’re getting exactly the amount of food you need, so you’ll minimize food waste. You’ll also avoid getting junk food just because it’s on a shelf next to you and it looks good since you’ll know exactly what you came to get.

Meal prep if needed

Depending on your preferences and your schedule, you might decide to meal prep in advance. You can prepare full meals and keep them in the fridge or freezer (depending on the dish and when you’ll be eating it), or you can prepare certain ingredients. For example, if you know you’ll need grilled chicken for a few recipes, you can grill it in advance. Or if you know you’ll need grilled veggies, you can prepare that in advance as well, and then you simply assemble your meals during the week. Or, prepare full meals and heat them up when needed.

Are Meal Plans Worth It

While meal plans can be time-consuming and they might take some getting used to, I believe the pros outweigh the cons, and they are worth the effort in the long run.

Do Nutritionists Make Meal Plans

Yes, nutritionists make meal plans! Letting a nutritionist make your meal plan allows you to be sure your meals are well-balanced, and aligned with your goals, and will help you be healthy and the best version of yourself.

That’s exactly what my program Best Body will help you achieve, so make sure to check it out.

Get your FREE 1-week meal plan here!

Meal Plan Guide

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