Kick-start the new year
Maybe you went a little bit overboard in the Christmas break? Or maybe you feel like you’re ready to get going again, but are lacking a little foodie inspiration? Good news: January is the ideal time to kick-start your goals, overhaul your eating habits and discover new motivation. With a little tune-up and some healthy fuel on board, you’ll be back with your motor running at full speed, in no time.
A fresh start to the morning
Difficulty: You’re rushing and there’s no time for a proper breakfast, so you grab a piece of toast on the way out the door.
Swap: No wonder you get the mid-morning munchies! Instead, prepare interesting and nutritious instant breakfast options in advance. Chances are you may be bored with the same old meal first thing in the morning, as well – even if your breakfast contains wholegrains so your appetite is satisfied, what about your enjoyment of food?
Idea: Batch-cook traditional fibre-rich oat or quinoa porridge into small, microwave-safe containers and store them in the fridge. You can even use your rice cooker to save time. Try alternating between different toppings and flavours, like sliced apple and cinnamon, golden syrup and raisins, or blueberries and Greek yoghurt. Bake a frittata slice with layers of grilled zucchini or asparagus, cherry tomatoes, fresh herbs and lean bacon. Package it up into individual portions so it’s ready to grab and go.
Lunchtime food court dilemmas
Difficulty: You’re bored with the routine packed lunch or at-home tuna salad, so you decide to pop out to the food court or corner café.
Swap: Instead of feeling guilty about a sneaky lunch stop, or letting food-court visits slip in too frequently, why not work a regular outing into your week? Investing some of your weekly SmartPoints into a lunch date with a friend may be just what you need to keep your healthy eating goals, on track.
Idea: Put your hand up to pick where you’ll eat and check out the menu before you dine. Most outlet chains have online menus these days, complete with kilojoule labelling. Order a soup, side salad or steamed vegies to fill up on, and ask for any dressings to be served on the side. Can’t see a choice like that? Ask. Even Japanese sushi bars have seaweed salad and miso soup waiting behind the scenes.
Difficulty: The arvo slump hits and you feel tired and hungry. But you soldier on because you’re trying to be ‘good’ until dinner.
Swap: It’s important to learn how to harness and manage your hunger and cravings, for wellbeing success. You don’t have to go hungry, as you always have ZeroPoint™ foods to reach for.
Idea: Factor in an afternoon snack like a small handful of dry-roasted nuts, a cup of air-popped microwave popcorn or a pick-me-up skim latte. Going without and going hungry may lead to overeating at the next meal or munching on one too many crackers with cheese as you cook dinner.
Difficulty: After a busy day juggling work and family, dinner ideas often escape you and it’s back to the same old recipe repertoire – which leaves you far from satisfied and looking for a sweet treat or two, after you’ve eaten.
Swap: Add excitement back into your meals by challenging yourself to try one or two new recipes each week, and stay satisfied with new tastes, aromas and flavours.
Idea: Explore an on-trend international cuisine like Mexican, Creole or Korean. Take time to shop for traditional ingredients like chipotle sauce or kimchi, or take a cooking class.