When you’re running into the office before rush hour traffic begins and finally heading home well after the sun has gone down, it can be tough to give your body the nutrition it needs. Couple this with the temptation of ordering out during your lunch break, and it’s easy to see how a healthy diet can fall down a slippery slope. When you do have time to make it to the store, it can feel overwhelming as you try to figure out what’s healthy (and tasty), and what’s not.

Let me take the guesswork out of this equation for you. Let’s review a complete grocery list you can take with you, along with easy meals you can prepare at home and bring to work.

Natural Grocery List

Step one is getting yourself to the store and selecting the right foods that you enjoy but that are also convenient to bring along for your day.

Lean Meats / Fish / Poultry: Packed with healthy proteins, lean meats should be included in your lunch, dinner, or afternoon snacks. You’ll feel more satiated without experiencing hunger pangs an hour after eating. Here are some things you can consider picking up:

  • Grass-fed beef
  • Chicken
  • Turkey
  • Salmon or other wild-caught fish
  • Sustainably-caught canned tuna
  • Eggs or egg whites

Dairy: If you’re not lactose intolerant, dairy is a great option for protein, calcium, and vitamin D.

  • Fat free cottage cheese
  • Greek yogurt

Grains: Carbohydrates are important but many people are consuming too many simple carbs, which spike blood sugar and result in a midday crash. Focus on whole, complex carbohydrates such as the following:

  • Quinoa
  • Brown rice
  • 100% whole-wheat bread (preferably no added fillers)
  • Sweet potato (not a grain but it’s an important complex carbohydrate)

Fruits: Packed with micronutrients, fruits are a tasty snack. Make sure you don’t overdo it on fruit. Here are great low-sugar options:

  • Raspberries
  • Blackberries
  • Avocados

Vegetables: One of the most important parts of any great diet, vegetables contain fiber and micronutrients that support your overall health. Some of the best options to get include:

  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Carrots

Nuts, Nut Butter, and Oils: Healthy fats have returned to the good graces of the medical community. They can support your cardiovascular and brain health. Nuts and oils are packed with healthy fats.

  • Almonds
  • Almond butter
  • Walnuts
  • Coconut oil
  • Extra virgin olive oil

Meal Ideas for the Busy Exec

Based on the grocery list above, here are a few ideas you can prepare ahead of time and take with you on your way to work.

Grab-and-Go Breakfast: A fried egg sandwich with a yogurt cup is a high-protein breakfast that will keep you feeling full for hours.

Easy Prep Lunch: Consider meal prepping in bulk over the weekend. You can make a batch of chicken breasts coated in olive oil and your favorite spices. Next to this a cup of brown rice. Top it off with a few of your favorite vegetables.

Light but Healthy Dinner: Again, meal prep is your friend here. Cooking ahead of time and storing food in containers will spare you cooking during the week. Make a batch of grass-fed steaks or pieces of salmon. Eat this with a side of quinoa and a salad.

Guilt-Free Snack: High-protein and fat-free Greek yogurt with raspberries is a great nighttime snack. Protein before bed promotes protein synthesis and muscle recovery. It also helps you sleep throughout the night.

What Meals Do You Bring to the Office?

Do you meal prep over the weekend? What’s your favorite meal to bring along during the week? Any cooking tips for the other readers? Let me know in the comments below!

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