We now live in a world where convenience is everything. It's no different when it comes to our food intake, especially when you have a long busy day ahead of you.
While I still want to emphasize the importance of whole, minimally processed foods, it's not always realistic. This depends on a multitude of factors and when it comes to trying to achieve your health and fitness goals, the easier it is the better!
After discovering that two of my clients frequently shopped at Shoppers Drug Mart, I decided to put this together to help them out and others who are looking for healthier items while still getting that convenience.
Please note that these are not THE healthiest food on the planet. Look at it more as something that will hold you over and provide you with more nutrients versus having none at all or very poor nutrition (e.g a muffin in the morning).
In no particular order, here are 6 healthy foods that you can grab on the go:
1. VH Steamers
I'm usually not a fan of these frozen meals, but when it's loaded with this many vegetables, it's hard to not add this to the list. It can be a meal replacement and is packed with 20g of protein, Vitamin C & A, Iron and Calcium and ingredients you can actually pronounce. However, be very mindful that these frozen meals often have a high sodium content so be sure to balance that out with what you're consuming throughout the course of the day.
2. Blue Menu Freezer Meals
President's Choice has recently rolled out their new line of Blue Menu items that I'm currently loving. They are wholesome, packed with quality ingredients, and have a low sugar content while still tasting good. This particular one has 26g of protein, but not as much Calcium and Vitamin C, and has a little more sodium.
3. Harvest Snaps
I love these and have been repurchasing them for over a year now. They are light and airy, very flavourful and are great if you are into more salty than sweet. Although this is more of a snack than anything, you still get plenty of fiber, iron and some protein. Just be careful not to finish the whole bag.
You can't go wrong with oatmeal, especially the ones in the packets that make it super easy to consume on the go. I like this one from Blue Menu because of the chia seeds added (great Omega 3 & 6) and a low sugar intake. However, feel free to mix it up and choose the one that suits you more. Oatmeal is considered a "smart" carb, meaning it's very nutrient dense. Just be mindful of the ingredients and the sugar content. The more decadent the flavour (e.g chocolate strawberry) the less healthy it will be.
5. Coconut Water
I've consumed coconut everything all my life, even while experts were claiming it wasn't good for you. Now it's back again and one thing you can find at Shoppers Drug Mart is coconut water. It's hydrating, refreshing, can be taken before, during or after a workout and has more potassium than bananas. Talk about a great recovery drink! Just be sure to stick with the basic and pure coconut water and stay away from the other flavours.
6. Tonica (AKA Kombucha)
This is a brand of Kombucha specific to Canada that I find to be much more pleasant tasting than most kombuchas. If you don't know what kombucha is you should definitely give it a try. It is a fermented drink made out of black tea and helps with overall gut health. It even has some carbonation to it to give you that fizz you may be craving.
I hope this list has helped you with making potentially healthier choices. Let me know in the comments below what you find to be healthy at Shoppers Drug Mart.
Yea, it's true. If it weren't, we'd all be doing it.
To go from eating junk food since you were a child, to consuming too much alcohol, skipping meals, not drinking water etc. to suddenly changing your diet to healthier choices is hard. Change is hard. Period. No one wants to do it, but we know it needs to be done.
I never tell my clients to "eat healthier" because what does that mean to them? A million thoughts are already going through their head and its overwhelming.
You have to start off simple, so easy that you can start with a small change and take it day by day, with each small step contributing to your overall success.
Here are 10 tips to eating healthier:
1. Add veggies and protein to what you already eat.
Do you have a big plate of pasta and tomato sauce for dinner that you love to enjoy? You don't have to part with it just yet. Add your favourite vegetables (e.g tomatoes, bell peppers) to it and some protein (e.g beans, meat). You'll find that the dish will actually taste BETTER with all those different flavours added into the mix. Plus you'll feel fuller longer and feel accomplished that you were able to increase your nutrition without doing much at all.
2. Choose better options at fast food places
To tell yourself you're going to stop eating out when you eat out often is unrealistic. Start with making better choices first. For instance, if you always order a beef burger, get a chicken one instead and drink water instead of pop.
3. Focus on one change at a time
The more things you try to change at once the less likely you will change at all. For instance, this week focus on adding veggies to your main meals only. Once you are consistent with it for a week or more, move onto something else you'd like to change. Try to choose the one with the biggest impact.
4. Easily find healthier recipes
I think this one is simple. There are so many healthy recipes out there and with the internet and our phones, it's that much easier. Here are some websites:
5. Go grocery shopping and fill your cart with quality whole foods
It starts with what you have in your kitchen. If it's filled with junk, you're going to eat junk. You're environment shapes you. Go to the store with a list so you have a plan you don't deviate from. Start in the produce section first (the outer perimeter) before you move onto getting anything else.
6. Stay consistent
None of it matters if you are not able to stay consistent with what you're doing. Consistency is key. However, if you have a bad day, don't be discouraged and give up because every day is a chance to start over.
7. Influence others and surround yourself with positive people
This one may be more challenging and it's not something you have to do right away but it makes a difference. When others see you eating healthy and putting in an effort, it's almost contagious. When you start getting results, you'll start influencing others around you even more. Make sure you're surrounded by people who support you and are positive. Distance yourself from negativity as much as you can.
8. Don't make food the enemy
You can still eat what you want, you have control over what you still like and dislike. Don't force yourself to do something you don't want to because you'll be less likely to commit to it (e.g crash diets).
9. This is now a lifestyle change
The more you realize that the better. This is not a quick fad or something you'll do to lose weight before a big event. This is something you need to now implement into your lifestyle so you have long term results. But don't worry, this is going to be a challenging but rewarding process!
10. Enjoy the journey
This is not going to happen over night. You are going to make mistakes and you're going to do things you "shouldn't", but you are also going to make positive changes, you're going to feel better, look better and perform better. Most importantly, you're going to learn.
I hope this helped, please leave me a comment below and have a happy and healthy day! :)