There are a few things that you can do to start your plan well. Keep in mind that not every approach or tip is going to work for every individual. At ZOE we don't believe in one size fitting all. So feel free to choose what works for you.
Simple steps to plan ahead:
1. Get familiar with your 50+ foods.
The first week of your plan is all about discovering and learning the best foods for your biology. Browse through the different food categories, and mark some as your Favorites ♥, in the app so you can access them easily when building meals. Embrace your sense of curiosity and adventure! Are there any foods you haven't tried before that you'd like to incorporate?
2. Stock up your kitchen with your 50+ foods.
When it comes to food, we can definitely be products of our environment. The more high-scoring foods there are in your kitchen, the easier it is to eat them (of course!). Take a scan of your fridge, freezer, cupboards, and countertops to ensure you have what you need.
3. Consider where foods are placed around your kitchen.
While you restock your kitchen with high-scoring ingredients, take note of where you store them. Displaying high-scoring foods on your countertop or in cupboards at eye level can help keep them top of mind. Are there foods that you feel would be better off "out of sight, out of mind" for the time being? You may find that simply placing them on higher shelves or in your storage pantry allows you more focus on incorporating new foods that are better for your biology.
4. Prepare some staples.
When it comes to meal prepping, a little goes a long way! Just a little bit of cooking in large batches over the weekend can pay dividends throughout the week. It's a great strategy to help you reduce cooking time. Meal prepping does not have to involve preparing entire breakfasts, lunches, and dinners for the week. You may want to approach it by prepping a few separate ingredients and have them on hand in storage containers ready to use when you need them.
Here are some examples of how you can prepare foods to store in your fridge:
- Cut fruit or vegetables to have for easy-to-grab snacks.
- Prepare one or two big trays of roasted vegetables to bulk up your meals.
- Cook a couple of staple starches, such as bulgur or quinoa, in larger quantities to simply add to your meals.
- Cook beans or legumes to throw into your salads or stews.
5. Identify local restaurants in your area.
It is easier to stick to your plan when you eat in. But we all have to (and love to) eat out and order in every now and then. If you need to eat out, be prepared by identifying 2-3 restaurants that have plan-friendly food in your area.
6. Formulate "if-then" plans
When we make lifestyle changes, challenges are inevitable. When going through your plan you'll likely encounter obstacles, and to help you through them, ask yourself now, "What will I do when I encounter <insert said challenge>?".
"If-then" planning is an excellent way to preempt obstacles and solve problems early on before you encounter them.
Here are some examples of what this might look like:
- If I'm heading out to run errands all morning, then I will make sure to have some healthy, satisfying snacks available to keep me sustained and focused until I have time to get a meal together.
- If I'm feeling stressed or overwhelmed, then I will go for a quick walk to clear my head before opening the fridge for comfort.
What strategies do you think will work best for you?
If you have your own, we'd love to hear from you! Share them with us in the in-app chat!