With life slowly returning to “normal”, workplaces opening up again and kids going back to school, you can feel that busy buzz coming back, and after 3 months of isolation and a slower pace of life, it can feel a little more crazy than usual!
It’s still vital that we keep ourselves strong and healthy, and as we all probably know, stress can have a major effect on our immune system. Stress actually decreases the body’s lymphocytes – the white blood cells in charge of fighting off infection – which given the circumstances is definitely not what you want!
One of the most crucial aspects of a healthy body and immune system is nutrition. Good nutrition supports the body to be at its optimal and when our bodies are feeling good from the inside out, it’s easier for them to fight off viruses and infections. Which is why today we have some simple tips that will not only help you make sure you’re feeding yourself and your family with nutritious food, but will also help you save time and hopefully make you feel less stressed!
The first step, and probably one of the most important, is to have a plan! It can feel a little tedious, but trust me, having a simple plan in place can make such a big difference in your head space and stress levels. Take some time each week to plan the main meals and snacks for that week. Think of the things you enjoy eating and that you know will be easy to whip up for the whole family. This also gives you an idea of what kinds of groceries you’ll need for the week, which is really helpful so you don’t have to walk into the supermarket and waste time on trying to think of what you need to buy.
Many of you will have heard of meal prepping, where you basically pre-cook and prep a bunch of meals for the week. If you already do this then that’s great, but it doesn’t work for everyone, and that’s where “partial prepping” comes in. What we mean by “partial prepping” is instead of pre-cooking and fully preparing all your meals, just prepare certain things, like cooking up a batch of rice or baking a few potatoes; maybe make a pot of bean chilli that you can divide between meals during the week, or prep the things that you know will take a longer time and you won’t have time for during the week. PRO TIP: Set aside a day once a week (a lot of people do a Saturday or Sunday) to do your planning and prepping for the week ahead.
3. BATCH COOK
Another thing you can do if prepping isn’t your thing is just to batch prep. Instead of cooking up a bunch of stuff ahead of time, just cook extra during the week. So say you’re making roasted veggies one night, you might as well just make some extra while you’re at, so that you can save yourself some extra time in the future – but still have a nutritious meal on hand that you can pair with whatever you fancy.
4. LIFE SAVING LEFTOVERS
Similar to batch cooking, leftovers are honestly such a life saver – plus they usually taste better the day after than they do the day before! When you’re cooking supper, make extra so that you’ll have enough for leftovers the next day, which you can easily pack as lunch or heat up for a quick supper when time is short.
5. UCOOK – But without all the stress!
You could actually cook up new, fresh and delicious meals each day but without all the stress of planning, grocery shopping, or deciding what to cook. UCOOK is a proudly South African meal kit and delivery system that checks all our bright green boxes! All the produce is fresh, organic, seasonal and supplied from the best local farms. Almost all of the packaging is reusable or recyclable and for the very few non-recyclable items, UCOOK promotes a fantastic alternative to the conventional bin – EcoBricks! EcoBricks are plastic bottles stuffed with all your non-recyclable items to form a dense brick. These bricks are actually used to make structures, ottomans and buildings and UCOOK provides a list of EcoBrick drop off points all over the country, so that your “trash” can be used to make something useful!
UCOOK offers meals for all your needs and focuses on providing you with the most nutritious food and recipes. Choose from Easy Peasy meals, to Vegetarian and Health Nut boxes tailored for your family – whether you’re cooking for one or for four, UCOOK has got you covered! Head on over to UCOOK and order your box today so that you can start your week feeling positive and stress free!