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Eating healthy at work and on the go

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Traditionally, Americans think of three "meals" per day: breakfast, lunch, and dinner. While equally important nutritionally, breakfast is often skipped, lunch is grabbed on the go, and dinner may be the only real "meal" of the day. To restore breakfast and adapt to our highly mobile lifestyle, try this: a light breakfast (European - not "Continental'), coffee break (elevenses, if you like), lunch, afternoon tea, and dinner. By breaking up the day into several smaller meals, we increase the odds of good nutrition, add variety, and satisfy hunger without feeling overly full.

Busy times often mean packing both breakfast and lunch. Oatmeal and sandwiches (or wraps) make for portable breakfasts. Leftovers, sandwiches, soups, and salads are good lunches. Dinner may be the only "plated" meal of the day, so some thought should go into preparing items in advance, enjoying interesting options, and saving some as leftovers.

It becomes apparent that preparation and planning are necessary. If breakfast and lunch can be carried along, then food must be contained and kept hot or cold. Don't forget utensils. If necessity requires buying breakfast or lunch, have specific choices in mind for popular food outlets to prevent impulsive shopping. Most popular chain restaurants have nutritional information available online, so you can choose wisely.

Often, and especially for coffee and tea breaks, we only need something small to eat. Since e may not know what we will later want, try bringing a variety of tastes (salty, sweet, savory, etc.) in small containers or a sectioned container like a Japanese bento box. A handful of raisins or nuts or a small piece of cookie, cake, or jerky may be just what you need. Since you have already set those aside, you were able to save money and time, and screen the ingredients.

The idea is to have a plan. Don't go into a situation where you're going to be presented with a myriad of choices and have to make an impulse decision. Ideally, we practice "mindful eating" without distractions and tasting every morsel. Often we can't do this. We have other things that what we must be doing while eating, so we can't pay attention to the way things exactly taste, and thoroughly enjoy food that were eating. Planning ahead will help make the right choices even if you do not really pay attention to eating.



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