Monday, June 14, 2010

Vegifying and Healthifying my Lunches

Through reading some amazing healthy living blogs lately I've begun to realize that my lunch routine was not as healthy as it could be. So I've been trying out some new things and trying to develop new habits when it comes to lunch.

First new habit: Meat does not have to be present in every meal. I think up until now I've automatically based my eats for lunch and dinner around what meat the meal will have in it. I've blogged a couple times in the past about how I occasionally enjoyed a meat-free meal but those were honestly few and far between.

Unfortunately my husband is not on board with the meat-free thing so I really have to limit my vegetarian dinners to once in a blue moon. Lunch, however, is all mine and I can do with it what I want! :)

And I'm learing now that just because it's vegetarian doesn't mean it isn't filling! I use protein-packed, non-meat products like hummus, avocado, eggs and canned beans paired with delicious veggies to make a light, filling and yummy lunch.

Second new habit: Limit frozen meals. My go-to, take to work & eat at my desk lunch choice, Lean Cuisines, are not as healthy as they want you to think they are. I probably ate 3-4 Lean Cuisines a week for lunches and I always thought I was being "good".

I'm seeing now that LCs are usually packed with sodium and processed grains and severely lacking in the fiber department. Also, they never really filled me up with those tiny portions. I think deep down I really knew they weren't that good for me all along, but the convenience factor always won me over. Grab and go. No lunch packing required. That brings me to new habit number three...

Third new habit: Take time to pack healthy lunches.
Confession: I am a chronic late-to-work offender. No matter how hard I try, it always seems like I'm rushing out the door in the morning with wet hair and no time to prepare anything for breakfast or lunch. Just dedicating the time to packing a good lunch really makes all the difference in the world!

So with trying out all these new habits, I've already found a meat-free and non-frozen lunch that I am seriously in love with. All it takes is a little prep at night or in the morning and I'm enjoying this delicious and filling meal midday:

That would be a vegetarian sandwich consisting of the following:
-Sandwich Thin {whole wheat}
-Hummus {schmeared on both sides...probably a little more than a tablespoon total}
-Baby Spinach
-Bell Pepper Strips
-Red Onion
-Avocado {1/4th of a big fat one}

Seriously, SO. FREAKING. GOOD. So good that I proclaimed to my coworker, Kelsey, as I was eating it "This sandwich is so good!" She agreed that it looked delish.

The sandwich alone fills me up quite well but I pair it with some fresh fruit {cantaloupe, blackberries & raspberries were in the mix today} to round out the meal.

Oh and a FUZE...I'm loving these lately because sometimes water just gets boring. Although, be careful that you check the nutritional label...only a few of the FUZE flavor choices have 5-10 calories per serving. The rest have anywhere from 60-90 calories per serving.

Yes, this is a self-pic taken at my desk. Welcome to my closet of an office! :)

Today I also packed a banana and a greek yogurt in case hunger struck me later. It's important for me to have healthy snacks on hand because who knows what I would eat if I got hungry and didn't have any healthy options! :/

However, my lunch really filled me up and I actually ended up not even needing the snacks. It's about 5:45pm right now and I'm just now starting to feel the grumble in my tummy. Maybe I'll have a small snack before we head over to our friend's house to eat some dogs and celebrate a birthday!


  1. Yes, your lunch looked insanely delicious today. I went through a short-lived phase of bringing healthy, fresh lunches but have since replaced that with Lunchables because of the convenience factor. It really isn't all that convenient to be overweight and unhealthy though, is it? Haha. I'm inspired to get back on track, so thank you!

  2. Clint and I are big leftover lunch eaters, but just twisted up a little bit. I usually take some of the leftover meat/beans/grilled veggies or whatever it was that night and instead of packing the leftovers, I throw them on top of some lettuce in a tupperware, add some more veggies/toppings and mix some EVOO & balsamic vinegar in a tini tupperware container. I must admit, I'm bad with the meat at every meal too, Clint doesn't believe in no-meat meals, it's tough! Other days it's just leftovers, but I don't mind them for lunch as long as dinner is something new.

    PS new favorite snack... almonds w/ dried apricots.

    xoxo, L

  3. yummmmmmmmm have been trying as well!!!! love the thin sandwich bread!!!! that stuff is great!

  4. I feel like I could have written this post! I also used to focus all meals - lunch included -around meat and live off of frozen "diet" entrees. I've since come to the same realizations you have. Fortunately my husband is a-ok with vegetarian meals.

  5. That sandwich looks so delicious! I am terrible about rushing out of the house in the mornings. I need to be better about packing healthy food instead of just grabbing a Lean Cuisine! I made a note for myself to try out that sandwich next week after my next grocery shopping trip!


Comments make my day! Please leave one. :)