Thriving Blog & Magazine
90 Days to a Healthier You: Let’s Get Nutritional Habits in Place Today and Kickstart 2023
Michelle Hilliard
Lifestyle Medicine Monthly Challenge

Why do we need to wait until January 1st to get it all together? Let’s start making small changes today in order to get us on track for the start of the new year.

When it comes to food and fueling our bodies, we do our best when we have good habits in place. But having a goal to “eat healthy” isn’t enough; we have to have a plan in place to make it happen. If you don’t have whole foods cleaned, prepped, or cooked for easy grab and go, then news flash, you will likely make bad choices when you are short on time.

We all are lacking time these days, so we need to prioritize and plan ahead. When I am on point and planning ahead, I notice that I eat healthier, spend less money on groceries, minimize waste, help minimize my daily stress, and overall add more balance and harmony in my life. 

Here are five easy steps to help get you focused and on point for organization and harmony in your life.

STEP 1
Plan Out Your Meals and Snacks 

Between your favorite recipes, recipes we can find online and cookbooks, we are never at a shortage of great recipe ideas. During weeks when you are busy, go with easy staples or minimal-step crock pot ideas. If you know you have a lighter week with less hustle and bustle, then be creative and challenge yourself to try a new recipe.

I am a repeat offender, meaning I cook a lot of the same recipes. I try to change them up slightly so the rest of my family doesn’t catch on. For example, we love a good Taco Tuesday in our house. One week we may have chicken tacos topped with homemade guacamole on grain-free tortillas. Then the next week, I may make barbacoa (Spanish barbecue) in the crock pot (while at work) and use the meat over cauliflower rice, and top with our favorite veggies, beans, or salsa. You could also make a taco salad over greens or if you’re out of tortilla shells, try the meat over a sweet potato. The possibilities are truly endless.

STEP 2
Write a Shopping List

After you have decided which meals/snacks you’ll have, write out a grocery store list. Double check your fridge and panty prior to going to make sure you don’t duplicate any ingredients.

If I know I have produce I didn’t use up from the week prior, I may pick a recipe or side dish that incorporates them into a meal. This step is so important to minimize waste.

STEP 3
Pick a Day for Meal Prepping

You will want to pick a day/time that works with your schedule to grocery shop and meal prep.

Hold yourself accountable and schedule it in your calendar with a reminder. This could be the same day or several days. For me I either do Sunday or Monday. I usually grocery shop one day and meal prep (cook) the following day. Do what works best for your schedule.

STEP 4
Wash Produce Immediately

When you return home from the grocery store, wash your produce immediately in order to help you save time during the week. I rinse all of my produce with filtered water and then lay out kitchen towels on my counter, so the fruits and vegetables can dry prior to putting them in the fridge.

After I wash my produce, I get the fruits and vegetables in my fridge for easy grab-and-go convenience. For instance, I place my washed and dried berries in a produce-saver container. I chop up my carrots and celery and place them in a mason jar filled with water to help keep them fresh longer.

STEP 5
Get Cutting and Cooking   

I look ahead at my recipes to see what can be prepped and cooked ahead. This may be roasting veggies in the oven, putting rice in the rice cooker, and cooking protein such as ground turkey or beef for Taco Tuesdays.

I usually will prepare some sort of breakfast for convenience. This may be a breakfast casserole, frittata, or grain-free banana bread to pair with turkey sausage or a hard boiled egg.

I have a pantry organized for my kids to find healthy and easy snacks such as olive packs, grass-fed beef sticks, wholesome crackers in individual snack-pack sizes, protein bars, and organic pouches.

I buy large bags of nuts and put them in individual snack-size bags for convenience.

We love hard-boiled eggs, so I will get a pot on the stove and boil those when I get home from the store.

This step can seem overwhelming, but it is meant to make more time during the week. I didn’t perfect this right away; it was a process, one small step at a time.

If you do the same thing over and over again you will get the same results.

Small habits are what shift us to make better life choices. Start small, so you are more likely to stick to the plan.

You may start by doing a pantry clean-out or organizing. Or you may just commit to make a grocery list prior to leaving for the store in order to save money and time.

Whatever you decide, I hope you commit to yourself and start making small steps today for a better outcome tomorrow. Good luck and know there is health and nutritional coaching available for you at Thrive to help you kickstart your journey. 

Thriving Magazine October 2022 Issue 16

Thriving Magazine • Issue 16

Our October issue looks how we can make positive changes in our mindset and behaviors over the last 90 days of the year so we're starting 2023 with a head start (and skipping the resolutions!). Enjoy!

Articles are written by our experts in physical therapy, fitness training, chiropractic care. nutrition, massage, acupuncture, Chinese medicine, and energy healing.