Breakfast may be touted as the most important meal of the day, but a healthy lifestyle includes eating a nutritious lunch. A wholesome afternoon meal can give you the energy and drive you need to stay focused for the rest of the day.
However, many people tend to overlook their lunch breaks or prefer eating at restaurants. While not unhealthy, eating out can take away the options you'd have with a home-cooked meal. For instance, home-made lunch allows you the opportunity to bypass excess sugars, processed foods, and saturated fat - which accounts for a much healthier diet plan.
The idea of lunch from home may sound tedious and time-consuming, but you can save up on time, effort, and money by following these creative lunch ideas for working women. Not to mention, it'll make maintaining your overall wellness that much easier.
Simple And Nourishing Lunch Ideas For Work
Before going any further, it's important you understand the key to a successful home-packed lunch strategy is - variety. Eating the same meal over and over will leave you feeling bored, and before long, you'll go back to your old lunch routine. However, changing up your lunch-plan every day can help you follow through with made-meals for the office.
Introducing variety to your afternoon meal plan is easier than you think. A nutritious lunch can include up to 600 to 650 calories, which means your weekly lunch scheme can be as diverse as you want. Here’s how you can try and spice up your office lunch hour:
1. Hummus And Veggies
If you haven't tried hummus yet, you're missing out on a delicious treat. It's a tasty and popular Middle Eastern spread made from a combination of chickpeas, tahini, garlic, olive oil, and lemon juice. Additionally, a cup of hummus only contains around 166 calories, and it's incredibly filling.
But, the best part about hummus is that you can use as a dip and pair it up with your favorite vegetables such as carrots, cucumbers, and celery. Not only is this lunch combo easy to prepare, but it's also jam-packed with nutrients, dietary fiber, and it's known to promote a healthy body weight.
If you’re still unconvinced, then you’ll be glad to know that hummus is also excellent for good gut health, can help control blood sugar levels, and contains anti-inflammatory ingredients. To put it plainly, hummus is only a step or two away from becoming a super-food.
2. Salads and Greens
A cold dish that may include a combination of raw and/or cooked vegetables, and sometimes accompanied by lean protein - does that sound familiar? If it does, that's because salads are an evergreen category when it comes to homemade lunch. In fact, how many lunch bags for women have you seen filled to the brim with salads?
There's a simple reason why salads are such a popular choice when it comes to lunch ideas - it’s because they barely require any effort or cooking to make. Additionally, you can't go wrong with salad - no matter the combination of ingredients. Be it a Ceaser Salad, a Thai Salad, or a Salmon Avocado Salad - all three are considered varying degrees of healthy and wholesome.
Although, there is one caveat when it comes to nutrimental salads - make sure the ratio of vegetables is higher than that of fillers such as pasta or rice.
3. Crunchy Stir Fry Vegetables And Some Lean Protein
Pairing off stir-fry vegetables with lean protein for an afternoon bite is another brilliant option. While stir-frying vegetables does require a small amount of prep, the cooking time itself is minimal. Apart from that, you can further cut down on cooking time by adding tofu or bean curd as the protein quotient.
Furthermore, you can season the dish as want or try out any of the stir-fry sauces available on the market, as long as they're not too salty. A single serving of stir-fry veggies and tofu can include 160 calories approximately because the dish is low on fat and carbs. This dish is truly an all-rounder as far as lunch from home is concerned.
4. Sweet Tooth Buster With Apples and Almond Butter
No lunch ideas list is ever complete with paying homage to a sweet dish or treat. If you're looking for a lunch idea that's exciting, original, sweet, and completely healthy - then apple sandwiches with almond butter (or peanut butter if you prefer) are perfect for your adventurous soul.
This dish can be ready in 10 minutes maximum, and it requires no prep or cooking time. Aside from all that, the recipe contains around 212 calories per portion. Lunch recipes don't get any easier, or creative, or healthy than this one.
Apples are great for regulating blood sugar and boosting brain power - two things which your body really needs during the afternoon. Whereas, almond butter is beneficial for heart health, weight loss, and contains magnesium, phosphorus, vitamin E, and B2.