Many of us are spending more time at home due to COVID-19 and this can mean reaching for the comfort foods when we feel bored, stressed or need cheering up. On busy days, it is easy to pop to the kitchen and grab a quick lunch without thinking too much about whether it is good for you.
We have some tips for planning and preparing healthier lunches at home.
Include plenty of fruit and veg
Fruit and vegetables are packed with nutrients and fibre to help keep your heart healthy. Find healthy salad or vegetable soup recipes online or in recipe books to include in your lunch plan. Finish off your lunches with a portion of fruit and a low-calorie yoghurt.
Increase your fibre intake
A diet that is high in fibre can reduce your risk of heart disease. Good sources of fibre include fruit and vegetables, beans and pulses and wholegrain foods. Try to regularly include a portion of wholegrain food in your lunches, such as brown bread, wholemeal pita, wholemeal pasta or brown rice.
Include lean sources of protein in your lunches
Foods that are high in protein can help you to feel full for longer and this can prevent you from snacking on less healthy foods during the day. Lean sources of protein include grilled skinless chicken or turkey, canned tuna, soybeans, tofu and low-fat dairy products.
Plan your lunches in advance
Planning your lunches in advance will allow you to put a little more thought into what you are eating as well as saving you time and money. Try creating a weekly lunch plan before the start of the week and shop for ingredients in advance. Prepare your lunches the night before to save time during busy days or try cooking large quantities of home-made soups and store single portions in the freezer.