A monthly meal plan involves planning out your meals for the entire month. Many people often only plan one week at a time. Meal planning this far in advance has many advantages, but requires some careful thought and dedication.
▶ Also Read: Tips for Easy Meal Preparation
One thing to remember is that a lot can happen in one month. Whether you’re planning for an entire family or just yourself, life is unpredictable.
This means finding ways to be flexible that don’t completely disrupt your meal plan or hurt your diet.
For example, there may be nights where you work late and are tempted to go for the vending machine. Instead you should try to keep a few healthy, non-perishable snacks in your desk or office area.
If you don’t have time to make your meal or don’t have the energy, know of restaurants and eateries in the area that offer food you can have. Better yet, know which ones have delivery services available.
Outline your health goals before you begin planning your meals. Adding more foods that are high in Vitamin C and calcium is good, but not effective. You need to make sure your monthly meal planner is tailored to help you meet your health goals.
Foods that will help you lose weight aren’t the same foods that will help boost your immune system, for example.
As you learn how to meal plan, make sure you’re not only being mindful of which foods are most helpful.
Learn about specific foods that can disrupt your diet and interfere with your health goals so you know to avoid them. Sometimes it’s not the food itself but the macronutrients and micronutrients, which isn’t something you can determine by appearance alone.
Healthy eating isn’t enough by itself. You need to make sure your lifestyle also contributes to the health goals you’re trying to achieve with your monthly meal planner.
This might mean taking up a new exercise program, making space at home to work out, or finding friends who have the same goals to help you stay motivated.
There are certain habits you might need to cut down on or give up altogether. Keep these things in mind as you’re planning out your month, or you might accidentally double book your evening yoga class with keto beef stew night.
Self-care is an essential part of developing a healthier lifestyle. As you’re learning how to meal plan you might get confused, overwhelmed, or frustrated.
Your plans might not always work out. That’s okay, and it’s normal. No one is expecting you to master it on the first try. Make sure that your monthly meal planner doesn’t begin to contribute to your stress level.
▶ Take advantage of our Nutiro Ultimate Guide on How to Meal Plan that gives you the flexibility to enjoy other meal planning options such as keto, paleo, vegan, gluten-free, etc.