As we continue to stay inside to keep our country safe, I know there are a lot of you super duper worried about snacking.
I posted last week about ways we can curb snacking brought on by emotions (think boredom, anxiety, sadness, etc), but let's talk about making sure we are setting up our meals for success. And what I mean by success is a meal that keeps you full, helps to fuel your athletic body and controls your blood sugar/cravings/
It's important for meals to contain protein, fiber and veggies. So let's talk about how to make that happen!
Veggies add micronutrients (vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals) that protect our immune system, reduce stress to our system to help with recovery, fiber to keep us fuller longer, and deliciousss volume for less calories!
Since it's hard to get to the grocery store right now, I am a big fan of frozen veggies!!
Frozen riced cauliflower can literally be stirred into anything (oatmeal, rice, smoothies).
The key to baking frozen veggies is to use a pre-heated sheet pan.
Frozen butternut squash cubes roast up realllll nice with some oil and salt in the oven.
Frozen broccoli is delish when roasted on a sheet pan and finished with some salt, pepper and lemon juice.
Feel free to add frozen spinach to your smoothies.
Also, certain veggies just take a while to go bad. Carrots are pretty sturdy and I always have baby carrots in my fridge for snackin'. Cabbage is also super sturdy and I think it is sooo delicious when just slowly pan roasted in a cast iron pan. Onions and garlic take a while to go bad and add tons of flavor to meals.
I know you're not interested in looking like Arnold Schwarzenneger, but as an athlete you DO need more protein. And that's great because protein keeps us fuller longer, balances our blood sugar and don't you LOVEEE gettin' told to eat more food by your dietitian?
So ways to keep the protein flowin' when you're tired of cooking and afraid of the grocery store?
I love canned beannnsss!! Cannelloni beans are my fave right now. They're so creamy and delicious. I have a REALLY delish recipe here for you to use!
Otherwise, canned beans always taste delish smashed up with some olive oil, pepper, lemon and nutritional yeast (which adds even more protein!). I also am ALWAYS a huge fan of high protein frozen burgers. Veggie burgers like Hi Protein Burgers from TJs or Morningstar Grillers are loaded with protein and super quick to heat up on your stove top.
Anddd how about frozen shrimp?? Spread them on a sheet pan and back for ten minutes covered in salt, oil, and pepper - voila! Easiest protein sourceever!
Rotisserie chickens can last for days and repurposed - add to mac n cheese, turn it into chicken salad, make a sandwich! Eggs stay well in the fridge for weeks at a time, I love a runny egg on top of pretty much anything for an extra hit of protein, and loveee me an omelette for dinner.
3. High Fiber Carbs
It's super easy to get tricked into "going" low carb right now, but, honayy, ya gotta keep your head on straight!! High fiber carbs will keep you from hankering for cookies later. Our body CRAVES carbs when we don't get enough of them during the days. As an active person, it/s really important we get enough carbs from the right sources.
I am obsessed with Grape Nuts cereal right now. A quarter cup adds crunch and fiber to my morning greek yogurt! Obviii, we already discussed beans as a wonderful protein source, but they also give us some awesome fiber content.
Stock up on Wasa Crackers. They're a great snack high in fiber and serve as a great "vehicle" for dips and spreads. I love spreading PB + jelly on them with a smidge of Greek yogurt. We already discussed that veggies are a great carb source, but remember that they aren't very starchy. When we skip the carb at our meal, we tend to get hungry pretty soon afterwards which only puts us at risk for snacking. Potatoes, corn and peas are starchier veggies that can add a little sustenance to your plate while also packing in the fiber.
Ultimately, the key to success is to figure out a plan that keeps you comforted, calm and happy during the day so that you don't rely on food as your sole source of self-comfort... andddd to balance your meals so that you get ENOUGH nourishing food to FEED your body so you don't develop true hunger late at night. It can be tricky to balance, but once you get it right, it becomes almost fun to listen to your body and nurture it with the right food choices.
If you are struggling to figure this out on your own - I want you to know I am HERE to help you. You can always schedule a time to talk to me about my one-on-one nutrition coaching programs and whether you would be a good fit.
Times are tough. Don't beat yourself up if you haven't been able to "get this right" (YET!) or if you need help navigating it. :)