Meal Prep Tips - The Meal Prep Co

Learn more about nutrition, fitness, and the benefits of meal prep from our experienced team.

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June 18, 2018by AGW0

Hamilton Health Foundation

We’re taking a break from our usual health blog to let you know a fun thing that we’ve been lucky enough to be involved with!

If you haven’t heard of Hamilton’s Heart Foundation, we encourage you to look it up. They’re doing great things in the community and they have some great events coming up that will be a fantastic way to give back to the community while having a fun night out!

Lynell Hamilton started this foundation to get kids off the street, give back to the community,, and to get the youth in San Diego active and involved in sports all over the city. They have started football leagues for different ages in the communities to get families and kids participating in sports, and for the kids to have positive role models in their lives. Lynell has his friends in the NFL come and play with the kids, teach them how to act on and off the field, and reinforce how important school is.

This foundation has started a program that goes around to all the different schools in San Diego, and does a little lesson about overall health, and then does a mini sports camp for the kids, doing drills that the NFL does, and having players come and do the drills with the kids. The Chargers used to do something similar when they were in town, but with their move, it left a huge hole in the San Diego school system that the Hamilton Heart Foundation stepped up and filled.

The Meal Prep Company was fortunate enough to be apart of the educational side of things. We brought our knowledge of nutrition, simplified it, and taught the kids the basics of what you should eat, and how your body uses the food.

We often think that the school system teaches everything the kids need to know; unfortunately, that’s not the case, especially regarding health. When I (Kimmy) worked for the San Diego school system, I heard teachers saying that one soda a day is ok for kids, and my mouth dropped. I would hear things like this all the time, because teacher’s just aren’t given the information and tools to know otherwise. Thankfully, Lynell has stepped up and the Hamilton Heart Foundation is changing the lives of our kids and helping our teachers get the material they need to successfully teach our young ones what they need to have a healthy, happy, active childhood. We are blessed to be able to partner with them and support them anyway we can.

If there’s ever an opportunity that you would like The Meal Prep Company to come to, please email info@themealprepco.com ! We love spreading our knowledge of health and nutrition!


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June 11, 2018by AGW0

 

When you think of drinking something fermented, what’s the first thing that comes to mind? Beer? Delicious fermented grapes called wine? Also referred to as elixir from the gods? But other than that, then you think of something fermented, it’s usually something that you throw away because it’s gone bad. So naturally when I heard of Kombucha, this fermented drink that has nothing to do with my happy grape juice, there was no way I was going to try it. Besides, the smell was similar to the communal trash bins at my condo during the middle of the summer after a good rain.

Through my health journey I’ve had a lot of different setbacks. Mostly originating from my tummy. I’ve become intolerant to gluten, I can’t drink very much of my happy grape juice, and overall I just don’t feel healthy. I’ve drank asodophilis a lot of mornings to see if it makes a difference, I’ve drank more aloe vera juice than the normal human, and yogurts are a staple in my life. My tummy should be happy right? Not really.  So, begrudgingly, I decided I was going to try this stuff that smelled like something died in the jar. And I was shocked. I had to hold my breath while I drank it, but I kept telling myself that it was flavored so it wouldn’t be that bad. I got a few good gulps down, and I sat back and thought about how I felt. About 5 min later, my tummy actually felt good!! I couldn’t believe it! I was sold. Since then, I’ve been chugging this stuff down and I really feel like it’s made a huge impact. When I go on vacation I miss it, and when I come back I go straight to the store to buy my favorite flavor. But, enough about my story and let’s dive into why this smelly stuff that strangely tastes decent, is REALLY good for you.

1: The bacteria in kombucha actually goes all the way down to your intestines. Fun fact I learned from my PHD Nutritionist father, yogurt and asodophilis bacteria only gets to your stomach, and then doesn’t go much further. This bacteria goes past your stomach and helps keep your large and small intestines happy, because they never really get much attention even though they’re the most important part of your digestive system. They also have good bacteria that needs to be replenished often and the stuff we eat does more harm that good for those little guys (*cough*cough* like soda and sugar).

 

2: Kombucha detoxes your liver; and, on top of detoxing one of the most important organs you have, it has cancer fighting properties that are proven to prevent and also kill cancer cells. There’s a lot of stories about people taking the holistic method of treating their cancer and winning, and a huge part of that is Kombucha.

 

3: It has probiotics, antioxidants, glucosamines, boosts your energy levels, balances your mood, and is basically like a magical drink that fixes almost everything. But in all seriousness, there is every reason to start drinking this stuff ASAP.

 

4: Lastly, on top of it helping everything in your tummy, it has outward effects. Studies have shown there is a direct correlation between gut health and acne. So, you take care of your gut and it will show on your skin. I’ve personally noticed a huge difference in my skin and the random breakups that I don’t get as much.

 

If I haven’t convinced you yet to jump on the bandwagon, I encourage you to do your own research. The Chinese have been making and drinking this for over 2,000 years and they called it the “Immortal Health Elixir” . Honestly with a name like that, you’ve got to try it. I personally suggest the brand Kevita, and I prefer the flavor Pineapple Peach. I buy mine at Vons but pretty much any grocery store in Southern California will have some kind of Kombucha There’s 40 MG of organic caffeine in each serving of this brand (about 2 servings a bottle). This brand tries to use as many things that are organic which I really like, so if you read the back of the label you’ll see how many of the ingredients that are certified organic. It’s lightly carbonated so you get that bubbly taste which is satisfying without the horrible ingredients as soda.

As many weird and crazy things we consume for our health (and just the weird things we consume in general!), drinking this fermented drink shouldn’t be that hard to incorporate into our daily routine. If we can take shots of basically rubbing alcohol (yes I’m talking about cheap vodka), then we can chug this weird drink for our health!


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May 8, 2018by AGW0

 

If you walk into any health store, you’re guaranteed to see the words “flax seeds” and “chia seeds”. But what exactly are they, and why should we eat them? Is it just a fad that will go away after a while, or is it something that you should grab at your local health store to incorporate into your life?

 

We’re going to break it down for you so you can walk into any health place and know what you’re eating and why.

 

Flax Seeds:

 

My dad has his PHD in Nutrition. My entire life I’ve been told to eat these little brown seeds that look way too similar to those mini beetles that somehow burrow their way into your cereal boxes; and when you pour milk into your bowl of cereal, the dead ones float to the surface. It’s pretty traumatizing to a little girl who just wants a bowl of bugless cereal. (Is that too much to ask?!?) So when my dad would try and pour some of these bug-seeds onto whatever we were having for dinner, I was mortified. I didn’t care how important flax seeds were, nothing was worth eating those things! Now, as an adult, I still have a hard time eating them. But, knowing how important they are, I just close my eyes and throw them down the hatchet.

 

But let’s really dive into why these little guys have so much nutrients packed into such a small package, and how we get their nutritional properties into our bodies.

 

Inward benefits: (2 tablespoons)

Copper: protects all kinds of tissue in your body (9%)

Vitamin B1: (15%)

Potassium: (3%)

Magnesium: fights cancer (14%)

Antioxidant: contains the antioxidant selenium (5%)

Omega-3s: 4 grams of those good fats!

 

Outward benefits: Flax will keep your skin looking youthful and flexible. If you have eczema, psoriasis, dry skin, any of that, these little guys will help you out.

 

Pro Tip: As amazing as these little guys are, in order to get the most out of them, you’re going to need to do some work. You need to buy them whole but smash them before you eat them. If you have a little grinder, a food processor or even a blender will work. Anything to break open that hard outer shell so that your stomach can break them down completely and they won’t go straight through you. A little more work but completely worth the effort.

 

Chia Seeds:

 

Chia seeds haven’t left an emotional scar on me like flax seeds have, although they do look funny in certain things. Personally, I like throwing them in my yogurt in the morning. A lot of people make them into pudding which can help curb those sweet cravings while also helping you feel full. It’s a better option than eating a few of those sugary pudding cups that we ate as kids growing up. Realistically speaking, who really eats only one of those in one sitting?!

 

Inward benefits: (2 tablespoons)

Fiber: (20%)

Magnesium: fights cancer (12%)

Antioxidant: contains the antioxidant selenium (5%)

Omega-3s: 4 grams of those good fats!

Phosphorus: helps make your bones strong (12%)

 

Outward benefits: it has anti inflammatory properties that help with everything in your body, including acne, and helps promote moisture in your skin. And since they expand when placed in any kind of substance (yogurt, milk, smoothies, etc) they help fill you up without filling up your calorie count. Chia seeds are great little additives to your lifestyle. Their health benefits aren’t as amazing as flax, but they’re easier to incorporate and they pack a lot of important micronutrients that it’s hard to get in other places. Also, they get bonus points since they don’t look like little brown beetles.

 


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August 24, 2017by AGW0

It is not uncommon to need a protein powder to supplement your meal prep- regardless of what your goal is, be it fat loss, muscle gain, or a healthy lifestyle, here are the differences:

Whey protein is derived from milk and contains a wide range of amino acids that absorb quickly, aiding in recovery and lean muscle development.

Our Favorite: Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard Whey

Where To Buy: Ultimate Sport Nutrition (mention you’re a client of The Meal Prep Company for a discount!), GNC, bodybuilding.com, amazon.com

 

Hydrolyzed whey isolate is still derived from milk but is extracted through a different process that allows more of the amino acids to stay bonded and nearly eliminates residual lactose, fat, and carbs.

Our Favorite: Dymatize Iso-100

Where To Buy: Ultimate Sport Nutrition (mention you’re a client of The Meal Prep Company for a discount!), GNC, bodybuilding.com, amazon.com

 

Egg white protein powder is a lactose-free alternative to whey that is low in carbs and abundant in vitamins A, B, D, and E.

Our Favorite: Jay Robb

Where To Buy: The Vitamin Shoppe, GNC, jayrobb.com

 

Vegan proteins are popular for post-workout recovery as well as meal replacements because a lot of manufacturers add raw fruit and veggie blends as well as vitamins, minerals, and probiotics. Since they contain no dairy byproducts, these proteins are bloat-free for people who don’t digest dairy well.

Our Favorite: Garden of Life Raw Meal

Where To Buy: The Vitamin Shoppe, GNC, amazon.com

 

More than half of the typical American diet is made up of added fats, sugars, and refined grains- consistent protein consumption has a myriad of benefits, including but not limited to;

  1. Increased Muscle Mass

Exercise causes tiny tears in the muscle fibers, so consuming a post-workout protein shake before you dig into your meal prep will ensure muscle fibers are repaired rapidly, and can become larger. The amino acids are also super-helpful for reducing soreness!

  1. Fat Loss without Feeling Hungry

The body’s preferred source of energy is carbohydrates because they are a quick burning fuel that spikes glucose levels, which is great to support a workout. High levels of protein must be consumed to get the body to use stored fat as its primary energy source.

  1. Blood Sugar Stabilization

The body relies on the hormone insulin to break down protein, fat, and carbs to produce energy, but the amount of insulin required to process carbohydrates is much higher than the required amount for protein or fat. This is taxing, but when the body stops expecting to ride the glucose rollercoaster, more balanced moods and energy levels are to be expected. Our low-carb (vegetables only) and paleo (sweet potatoes and yams only) meal prep plans are best for individuals seeking blood sugar stabilization.

  1. Mood Improvement and Brain Function

Some of us are no strangers to the phenomenon sweeping the nation known as “hanger” (a combination of hungry and angry)- not only does waiting too long to eat or not consuming enough protein in general put us in a bad mood, it affects how your brain makes and transports dopamine and serotonin. Additionally, the brain needs the amino acids from complete proteins to maintain healthy motor skills, coordination, and learning ability.

  1. Slowing of the Aging Process

Glutathione is considered the Godfather of all antioxidants, sort of the Don Corleone of detox, if you will. Antioxidants scoop up and get rid of nasty free-radicals that harm the immune system and can cause a host of other issues like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, liver disease, cystic fibrosis, cataracts, and heart problems. Thankfully, the incredible human body produces Glutathione on its own- but it can only be produced by intaking an optimal amount of protein.

 

Your Meal Prep Company consultant will recommend the best protein supplement for your lifestyle, body composition, and goals as well as guide you in how to track and achieve your daily macros that are calculated specifically for you. If you’re ready to make your diet one of your success factors, follow the link to book your in-person meal prep consultation today.