When’s the last time you told yourself you wouldn’t eat junk food and soon after found yourself in a drive-thru for convenience’s sake? Do you ever grab the easiest thing to eat even if it’s not nourishing you? Don’t worry, even the strictest healthy eaters succumb to such behaviors occasionally.

When it comes to nourishing eating habits, perfectionism is a far-fetched, even unhealthy ideal. The key to healthy eating is to develop long-term strategies for being prepared during busy work weeks when cooking isn’t always an option.

We’ll chop this article up into three important components: being prepared, developing a solid mentality and rerouting cravings.


Healthy Eating Ideas: Preparing for the Week Ahead

Your week is demanding, and you wish you could conjure up healthy bites at the snap of your fingers. Breakfast before leaving the house is usually smooth, but last weekend was busy, and you faltered on your personal promise to do some meal prepping. So, what to do for lunch? And what about dinner after an exhausting day on the job?

The above scenario clearly identifies the importance of preparedness as a primary factor for a successful week with food. If you have nutritious meals and snacks (and delicious ones at that) on-hand and ready to go, you’re less likely to seek out unhealthy foods.

But what to prepare for the week? Below, we’ve gathered some lunch and snack ideas sure to get your taste buds singing and energy levels soaring.

Lunch ideas
- Tempeh sandwiches: Pan fry some thinly sliced tempeh and place it on sprouted bread with onion, tomato, lettuce and your choice of sauce.
- Simple stir fry: Throw some diced onions, carrots, broccoli, mushrooms and mini corn in a pan or wok and flavor with coconut aminos, garlic, ginger and five-spice powder. Make some jasmine rice or rice noodles to have on the side.
- Lentil pasta: This is easy to make in big batches. Buy some hearty pasta sauce to go with lentil or chickpea pasta and add sautéed veggies. Great choices are zucchini, spinach, onion and eggplant!

Snack ideas
- Carrot sticks and hummus
- Sprouted bread with nut butter
- Herbalife Nutrition® Instant Soup
- Small fruit salad
- Cassava chips and guacamole

We hope these ideas come in handy and spark some other ideas! Remember to buy and make enough for dinner, too!


Mental Prep: Getting in the Mindset to Eat Well

Knowing what you want to eat is only half the battle. You also must shop for, cook and eat the food too!

Making better food choices is a matter of habit, and building good habits takes time. What helps with habit cultivation is bringing your “why” front and center. Think about why you want to eat better on the daily. Are you trying to save money? Do you want to feel better so you can achieve more in your work and personal life?

If you stop and think about it, having more money and energy is a transformational combo. Couple that with the time you’ll save by meal prepping and just imagine how your life could change for the better!

Having these chats with yourself can get you in the mindset to eat clean. Accountability helps, too. Tell your friends and family you want to eat well consistently, and they might just jump on board with you!


How to Crave the Foods Your Body Needs

There are physiological reasons why we crave junk food. Researchers are beginning to think that what we eat alters our gut microbiota. Gut microbes can send signals through the nervous system and affect our cravings.

Aside from the science-y stuff, most junk food contains large amounts of sodium, fat and low-quality carbohydrates. This combo can jolt reward centers in the brain, setting the pace for similar behaviors in the future (aka how bad habits form).

Luckily, there are ways to “deconstruct cravings.” This essentially means getting the things your body craves through healthy sources. For example, a hearty morning smoothie could contain carbs from a banana, fat from an avocado and a bit of sea salt for taste. And then it can be made delicious with other additions like cocoa powder and raw honey.