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Keto Diet: Guide To Meal Prep

Man preparing mealYou’re excited about starting the Keto diet, you’ve done your research and you’ve figured out what percentage of calories, carbs, protein, and fats are right for your body and goals. But the hard part about eating Keto is getting the food together. When you’re not cooking for a Keto diet it’s easy to just throw whatever you have in your fridge together to make a meal. Keto takes a little bit more thought.

Enter Meal Prep

Preparing your meals ahead of time can make cooking more enjoyable, can take some stress out of your life, and really allow you to enjoy the food that you eat. Meal prep doesn’t have to use scary tools or intense planning. All you need is some time and good old fashioned elbow grease.

What is Meal Prep anyway? It is exactly what it sounds like. You prepare single-serve meals ahead of when you actually need them so you’re good to just grab them and go! You can control exactly what type of meal, and how much food is there, and what the nutrient and calorie content is. You can prepare your meals any way you like, down to full-size meals, single-serve portions, snacks, or individual ingredients you can mix together to make your meal when you’re ready to.

Meal Prep is great for people trying to watch their macros and carbs, and for people trying to cut down on their cooking time. However, when some foods are cooked and stored away they may release histamines as a byproduct of the fermentation process. This means that people sensitive to those compounds could have negative reactions to their leftovers such as brain fog and fatigue. Everyone has a different histamine tolerance so meal prep is still worth the try if you’re curious about it. You can even decide to prep one specific meal for the week and cook the others fresh if you find that works best.

High protein fat food pack

Starting meal prep can be simple if you adhere to the following tips!

1. Invest in high-quality food storage containers.

Your food will last longer if you use higher quality containers. Stainless steel containers that are thermal are optimal for keeping foods warm or cold for long periods of time. You can even chill or heat them ahead of time to get some extra time in. Microwave or stove friendly glassware is also a great and accessible option.

Try to avoid single-use plastics or even reusable plastics. Single-use plastics contribute to a lot of waste in the world, and reusable plastics may release dangerous chemicals into your food. These chemicals can make you sick and even mess with your hormones… so even though it may feel more convenient it’s certainly not worth it.

2. Choose Recipes and Build your Menu

Starting small with recipes you already know how to make is great! But eventually, you may find yourself getting bored with the same meals over and over again. Find simple and interesting recipes online and decide what you’ll cook for the week and when you want to enjoy those meals. Be sure to make a list of the ingredients you’ll need plus any missing essentials so you can actually give the new foods a try when you’re ready! Make an effort to try different sauces or swap different ingredients to mix things up!

3. Make Time for Meal Prep

Try to set aside one or two days a week dedicated to cooking your meals. This will stop you from wasting more time than necessary in the kitchen. There are no designated rules that say you have to meal prep only at the beginning or end of the week. If you find it easier to do some cooking on a Sunday and then to replenish your meals and cook some more on a Wednesday… go for it! If you’d rather get everything done in one go, you can make everything in one day instead. Whatever works best for you is the right way to meal prep. While you are in the process of cooking it can be helpful to multitask. Use your oven for one portion, and a few different stove burners for others. Utilize Crockpots, Instant Pots or Air Fryers too!

Once your meals are ready to go it’s time to store them. There aren’t any exact times as to how long your food will stay fresh and be good to eat, but 3-5 days until the food is eaten is the general guideline. Most of it depends on how well your refrigerator runs, how you packed your food into the containers, and the quality of your ingredients. Try to keep your wet foods and dry foods separate, if you’re not sure how long you’ll be waiting before eating a meal freeze it, and always make sure you wash your hands before and during food prep.

That’s it! Now that you’ve got the basics of meal prep under your belt its time to start experimenting with different Keto meals! Remember, you want a balance of fats, proteins, and carbs so here are just some foods you can try experimenting with today! You can always spice up the foods with salt, pepper, and whole herbs as well.

Fats: Avocado, grass-fed butter/cream, ghee, extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, MCT oil

Proteins: Grass-fed Red meat, free-range chicken and turkey, wild salmon, trout, tuna, and mackerel, free-range Omega-3 eggs, unprocessed and grass-fed cheddar, goat, blue or mozzarella cheese, and nuts and seeds

Carbs: Leafy greens, cucumber, asparagus, zucchini, berries, grapes, citrus fruits

The recipe options are endless, so get out there and enjoy yourself! Let us know about your experience with the Keto diet and what changes it has made for you!

Disclaimer: This article is for information purposes only, it is not intended to diagnose, treat or prevent any illness or disease. Please consult a professional for your healthcare needs.

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