What is meal planning and why do you need it?
JANUARY 20, 2020
Meal planning is the simple act of setting aside time to plan your meals in advance for a certain number of days. Most meal plans are made for an entire week in advance, but this number may vary. The idea is to not start from zero before every meal and regain control over what you consume. Eating healthy snacks, getting in better shape, there are many reasons why meal planning is beneficial to our lives, the three most important reasons are.
The majority of the time spent on cooking goes into thinking about what to cook, shopping for what you need, cleaning and cutting up ingredients and many other tasks. Meal planning is a process that helps you save time during busy weeknights by reducing certain steps in the preparation process. Knowing what to prepare saves you time spent on deciding what to eat. People also wash and dice ingredients in advance thus reducing preparation time further.
Planning meals beforehand ensures that your diet is balanced and rich in nutrients. This gives you complete control over what you put into your body and helps consume wholesome and healthy meals. Meal planning also allows you to plan around the times when you will be enjoying a meal out with friends or when you want to indulge in some delicious coconut laddus. You are much more likely to stick to your diet when the healthier option is cheaper and easily available. Meal planning also ensures that you eat the amount that you have already measured for yourself, thus avoiding over-indulging or eating less than required.
Buying groceries and preparing your meals costs a lot less than dining out. By planning everything in advance, you'll make full use of the ingredients you buy and reduce waste. Most food items that are thrown in the garbage are the ones that have been sitting at the back of your fridge. When you plan meals, you need to prepare a thorough inventory of what you have, what you will need and how long these items will last. Regular meal planning sets into motion a regular rotation of food rations, thus preventing food wastage and spending anything extra on groceries.
An important point to remember when it comes to meal planning is that your meals can be as flexible as you want. The secret to meal planning is that you can plan literally anything, even deciding not to cook and enjoying pani puri on certain nights is a valid option when planning your meals. The most important factor is to have thought about it and to know where the next meal will come from. Meal planning allows you to plan and allocate your resources of time, money and health in the right amount thus helping us stay on the track to achieving our goals.