Fast, healthy meals? At home or for to go!

How to prepare fast and healthy meals properly

As the preparation of fast, healthy meals was already described in the previous article, only the short definition is repeated here. If you want to know more, you can read more about Meal Prep here.

"Food Prepping" stands for the preparation of several meals for the following days. Sometimes you even cook for a whole week in advance. The meals are prepared as efficiently as possible, so they are simple quick meals that are pre-cooked in several stages. For example, four different recipes are prepared in triple portions, which saves time and sometimes also money".

 

3 main components: Precooking fast, healthy meals

1. Proteins

Every meal should contain the macronutrient protein. Proteins have numerous important functions for our body. They keep our hormones in balance, support our immune system and are an important source of energy. Protein is the last macronutrient you need to worry about getting fat from. Especially animal proteins like fish, eggs, chicken, beef, lamb or game have a good bioavailability and satiate sustainably and could be possible ingredients of a prepared, quick and healthy meal.
Dairy products, especially from cows, are less optimal protein sources. Although they may theoretically contain larger amounts of protein in some cases, they can promote inflammation in the intestines, which means that more pro-inflammatory substances enter the body.
For people on a vegan diet, legumes might be an option, if they are soaked in water and a dash of lemon juice for 8-12 hours before eating and then washed off well before cooking. This will filter out any anti-nutrients that may adversely affect digestion. Quinoa, buckwheat, amaranth, sorghum and rice are other compatible vegetable protein sources, but they also have a higher carbohydrate content. Soy should be consumed, if at all, only in its fully fermented form "Tempeh" and rather rarely, as the plant contains substances that have an estrogen-like effect and can upset our hormone balance. More information about proteins can be found here!

 

2. Vegetables

Every fast, healthy meal should contain vegetables without exception. At least one third of each prepared meal should consist of vegetables. Here it is best to vary a lot, using colours and shapes as a guide. Firm vegetables contain a lot of fibre and therefore provide lasting satiety. Broccoli, cauliflower, peppers, courgette, mangetout, green peas, aubergine, kohlrabi, fennel, pumpkin or Brussels sprouts are optimal sources of vitamins and micronutrients, whose dietary fibres also provide a feeling of fullness and promote good intestinal bacteria.

Many of these vegetables are available naturally and frozen without fat or additives. They are ideal for quick, healthy meals and can also be prepared in large quantities for several meals. Fermented or pickled vegetables also promote intestinal health and require little effort. Sauerkraut, carrots mixed with lactic acid bacteria, red cabbage or beetroot are available in preserving jars and are also suitable for when you are on the go. Artichoke hearts in saltwater without oil are also a simple side meal to prepare. Due to their bitter substances, they particularly aid the digestion of fat. Cucumber, raw paprika or carrots can also be chopped up in a Tupper tin and used as a fresh source of vegetables.

 

3. Fat vs. carbohydrates - low carb meals or high carb meals?

For many people it is an advantage if they eat less carbohydrates or none at all, especially during the day. If you have more body fat around the middle of your body (hips and stomach) and often have energy holes and ravenous appetites, you should focus more on good fats instead of carbohydrates for the third component. Carbohydrates are particularly well tolerated by athletes and people with a low body fat percentage. Reducing them for a while will stabilise blood sugar levels for a long time and help to reduce the problems mentioned above.
Good sources of fat ensure a stable energy level, they satiate and are also important for the absorption of some vitamins that cannot be absorbed by the intestines without binding to fatty acids. Beta carotene, for example, a form of vitamin A found in carrots, is one of these. Good sources of fat are nuts, avocados, native vegetable oils such as coconut oil, olive oil, or linseed oil, and pasture butter or ghee are good sources of low carb meals. Always remember: fat is not equal to body fat! The vegetable content is then increased to at least half of the meal.

If you have a low body fat percentage and, ideally, a lot of muscles, a constant energy level throughout the day and exercise regularly, you can supplement all or some meals with carbohydrates when preparing meals. In order not to reach too high an energy value per meal, the fats should be reduced instead.
The two macronutrients should therefore be separated. Good sources of carbohydrates are rice, quinoa, buckwheat, millet, gluten-free oats, potatoes, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, teff, rice waffles or gluten-free sourdough bread without artificial ingredients.

 

In concrete terms: 3 fast, healthy meals ingredients

Proteins, vegetables, good fats or carbohydrates - these are the three main ingredients. From these building blocks you can now put together quick, healthy recipes or meals. The following table serves as an aid. At least one food should be chosen from the first two columns, but of course there can be several. From columns 3a and 3b only one should be selected per meal. The quantities given serve as a rough guideline. They are only examples, of course there are many other variations that are suitable.

1. Vegetables:

1-2 "hands full of"

2. proteins:

1 "palm of the hand"

 3a grease:

1-2 "thumbs"

 3b Carbohydrates:

1-2 "hands full of"

 Arugula/ salad

Chicken

Olive oil

Quinoa

Raw vegetables
(cucumber, paprika, fennel, kohlrabi)

Turkey

Balsamic vinegar

Rice

DF* Imperial vegetables

Beef rump

Cocoa butter

Rice Cake

DF green beans

Lamb

Nutmeg

Buckwheat

DF Peas

Game meat

Olives

Buckwheat noodles

Frozen broccoli

Minced beef

Avocado

Rice noodles

Strained tomatoes

Canned sardines

Pine nuts

Sweet Potato

Frozen broccoli

Canned tuna

Sunflower seeds

Potato

DF Spinach

Trout

Nuts

Hokkaido Pumpkin

Courgette

Salmon

Pasture butter

Oat Flakes

Aubergine

Tinned anchovies

Coconut oil, virgin

Amaranth

Kohlrabi

DF Shrimps

Pumpkin seeds

Millet

Fennel

Game Hoe

Coconut milk

 

 ...

Eggs

Ghee

 

Peas

Beefburger Patty

Coconut oil, native

 

Zucchetti

Saithe

Linseed oil

 

Aubergine

Cod

MCT Oil

 

Kohlrabi

chickpeas

Hemp oil

 

Radishes

Linseed noodles

Pumpkin seed oil

 

...

Tempeh

...

 

* DF = deep-frozen

 

3 Concrete examples: Fast, healthy meals

With the table you can now create recipes or meals...

1. Example - simple Low Carb Meal: chicken breast with vegetables

Chop the chicken breast and simmer in vegetable stock for a few minutes. Then drain the broth and toss the cooked chicken pieces in some mustard, frozen herbs and a teaspoon of nutmeg. Then simply boil the frozen vegetables, for example the Kaiser vegetables, briefly, then season with salt and pepper, pour a little olive oil over them and fill them into a Meal Prep Tupper tin together with the chicken pieces.

 

2. Example - high carb meal: tomato sauce, tuna & rice noodles

A very simple recipe: you put strained tomatoes with Italian spices, some salt and pepper in a pot. You can optionally add a few fresh date tomatoes, cut them in half and add them. Then you add canned tuna (in its own juice) and boil it briefly. You can also cook rice noodles according to the instructions and you will have a simple, healthy and delicious meal.

 

3. Example - vegan/ vegetarian meal: quinoa salad with(out) egg

Cook the quinoa according to the instructions and leave to cool. Cut the cucumber, date tomatoes and radishes and mix with a little salt, pepper, lemon juice and a small amount of olive oil. If you are vegetarian but not vegan, you can add boiled eggs to the meal.

So, this is the easy way to prepare fast, healthy meals - whether for work, sport or private use. Check out our Supz blog for more!

 

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