Benefits of Meal Planning
3 wonderful things about meal planning
Benefits of Meal Planning
When I first met my husband he would eat hamburger helper for almost every single meal. If I asked him to cook you can bet that we would be eating hamburger helper. Really in the big picture, for me, it was not that bad. We were still ‘long distance’ at the time so having hamburger helper a few days a week really did not bug me. It was not until we moved in together that I had to put my foot down and actually make him cook a decent meal. For the first probably 6 months we really struggled with cooking (especially supper). By the time we would get home and unwind that last thing either of us wanted to do was go to the grocery store, pick something to cook and then actually cook it. This is when I started meal planning. At first I felt like such an old lady! You never hear for the young 20 year old making their meal plan and going to the grocery store with their coupons. But trust me it was one of the best choices we ever made and here is why:
We make our meal plans for 2 weeks to follow my pay schedule (I am the one that does the big grocery trips) so that anything we need that is non-perishable is already purchased and at the house. I am not having to run to the store 2 or 3 times a week to get pasta or a flour because I was not sure what we would be eating. Planning out your meals also allows you to make a pretty solid shopping list. You can see what you have at home and what you still need to pick up. The real trick is making sure you follow that list and don’t let temptations take over. Having a list makes going to the store a breeze. You can go get what you need and get out.
The second reason I find meal planning budget friendly is because you have the opportunity to take advantage of club rewards. Point reward programs like Superstore PC Points are very beneficial if you are trying to save a few dollars. For example we buy most of our meats at Superstore. The PC Points usually has meat as one of the rewards so by buying our meat their we are earning point that we can later redeem. Another great App is checkout 51. You earn cash back by just taking a picture of your receipt and uploading it. If you bought something that they have on their list you instantly get cash back.
Eating hamburger helper as much as my husband did you can imagine that he was probably not in the best shape. Meal planning really gave us the chance to make sure that we are eating a well-balanced diet. We are not running to the store looking for something to make and buying crap. Do not get me wrong we still indulge in the good stuff like pizza but if is certainly not as often as it was. We now have meals where we are eating veggies or that are meatless. Planning out what we were eating is something I would consider one of the biggest factors of our weight loss journey.
It is Easy
When it comes down to it meal planning is really not that hard. Yes it will take a little while to get use to planning everything, making your list and sticking to it, but once you get in the groove it becomes a part of your day to day. You can come home and know exactly what you will be eating. We post of meal plan on the fridge so that everyone knows what is for supper. I can take frozen meat out in the morning and be prepared because I know what we are going to have. It is a lot less stressful and overall has improved our relationship. We get to try new recipes that would we never have thought to make. Pinterest is a wealth of information when it comes to health meals and is something I know we have taken advantage of.