A new development has inspired dieters to work harder at their goals. New hope is given to people who have won the battle of the bulge and are now trying to keep the pounds off. Surely you have seen the adverts like “healthy take-away”. Health food companies are now offering an extended service of prepackaged meals, and although this tends to be expensive, it makes it a lot easier to keep to your goals and makes meal planning a breeze.
Essentially, the concept behind pre-packaged meals is that since they are ultra-convenient, you are less likely (snacking is recommended twice a day) eat an unhealthy fast food meal for your main meals. This supports a healthy lifestyle and various diet plans. Since the portion sizes are also either pre-set or customized, the chances of over-eating are also greatly reduced.
So what’s the difference between the new “healthy” meals and the traditional Lean Cuisine or Weight Watchers from the frozen aisle at the grocery store?
Well, both will help you to achieve your goals, but the biggest difference isthe overall healthiness of the food.
If you examine the ingredients on frozen meals, they contain high fructose corn syrup, modified products, food coloring and typically high levels of sodium. So while they might be low calorie, they are not very heart conscious or healthy! Fresh pre-packaged meals provide all the benefits of traditional diet programs, with one additional huge advantage – no additives or preservatives. Some of them even use organic or locally grown/raised produce and can help you be environmentally friendly and reduce your carbon footprint!
Many of the pre-packaged food companies will work with you to tailor the amount of calories in each meal
so that you get exactly the right amount of total daily intake so that you can meet your diet goals while eating five meals a day. Some will balance the nutrients to match the “Zone” diet at 40% carbs, 30% protein and 30% fat. Others will offer higher protein at low carb count to help you shed the lbs faster.
These pre-packaged meal companies tend to be local and require that you swing by once or twice a week for pickups,
but some will delivery and others may ship locally. Check your local pre-packaged meal companies for options. Remember – the meals will only keep about a week in the fridge as they don’t contain preservatives, but you can freeze them yourself to add a few weeks of shelf life.
Enquire about the ingredients they use before making your final choice, and pay attention to the total cost.
While these plans are expensive at $5-8 per meal, consider the price of eating out or even the price relative to your daily latte! A month of healthy eating will ensure results in your dietary goals. And with these companies, eating healthy has just become child’s play!
James Kim is a guest writer for foodonthetable.com. Food on the Table is a company that provides online budget meal planning services. Their goal is to help families eat better and save money.
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