Plan out meals in advance for healthier eating

Note: This is the first in a series on diet tips this week
Eating healthy is one of the toughest things to do for people with busy lifestyles.
As soon as people hit a day where it’s rush, rush, rush, when it’s time to eat they often head for a fast-food drive through or order carry out. Most times those dinner choices are going to be less nutritious unless you’re very careful about what menu items you order.
In order to avoid being caught in the “what’s for dinner?” trap, the best thing to do is plan ahead. Here are some tips on how to plan out meals in advance:
Jot down ideas – Get the whole family involved when you have some free time, like on a Sunday night, and jot down a bunch of future meals the family might like. Research on your own, too.
Make a grocery list – Get the items you’ll need in advance and look for time-saving steps, such as using frozen vegetables instead of preparing them all straight from the produce counter.
Stock up on food staples – Have items such as milk, cereal, whole grain bread, pasta, rice, tortillas, cheese, tomatoes and lettuce on hand. If these healthy items are available they will help you avoid eating poorly in a rush.
Plan out the week – Write down the meal plan for the week and think about possibly cooking a meal or two ahead of time. Some people like to make bigger portions and then freeze half to eat later.

At Home Fitness consultant Aaron Dorksen’s blog deals with a variety of fitness topics, ranging from workout tips, motivational ideas and feature stories on how exercise impacts people’s lives. E-mail him with comments, questions or ideas for future blogs at