Lunch! We have to eat it, but it can be hard to break routine and start making lunches that are quick and healthy. It may feel easier just to go buy something from a restaurant or fast food place. Plus, most of us don't have a lot of time to stop working and actually eat.
There are times I may be able to walk away from my desk for about 20 minutes during the week. Sometimes, I have to eat and work at the same time. I know this is not healthy behavior but it can be the norm for a lot of us. Plus, it is bad for digestion since I am stressed that I have to eat quickly and go right back to work.
This is why it is imperative that I bring healthy lunches. Food is medicine! If I don't have the ability to take time to eat lunch, the least I can do is to make a healthy lunch to support my body's nutritional needs.
Being stressed increases cortisol production in our body. When cortisol production is happening, the body reduces blood flow to the digestive system. Without effective blood flow, the food we eat can't be digested properly. This can cause indigestion, gas, bloating, constipation and abdominal pain. It can also cause us to frequently get sick with colds and flu's because our immune system is weakened with constant stress.
Do you want to? ✅Avoid getting colds and flu ✅Increase your energy ✅Boost mental clarity ✅Sleep soundly ✅Lose weight and keep it off ✅Stop bloating and excess gas ✅Eliminate constipation and/or diarrhea ✅Feel less stressed
Not sure where to start? I am here to help! I am a Certified Holistic Nutritionist teaching people just like you how to stop suffering from the embarrassing effects of an unhealthy gut so you can get back to living. I offer a FREE 30 minute call where we will talk about your specific symptoms and start creating a plan on how to heal your gut using the Simply Great Health program.
In addition to not having enough time to eat lunch, it is also a really bad idea to skip lunch. By doing so, your body slows down your metabolism making it easy to gain weight. Plus, your body will go into survival mode making you crave food. When you finally do eat something, you will overeat. (Source: Piedmont Healthcare)
Now that we've determined why lunch is an important meal to eat, let's talk recipes. I put together a list of really easy and healthy lunches that are quick to make. Some can be made on the weekend or you can make them during the week or the night before.
I focused on recipes that use foods found in the pantry, freezer and refrigerator. I've also included why the ingredients are good for your health. I bet you will be surprised to learn how food can not only heal our physical body but also promote a healthy mental and emotional state. When we have a healthy mental and emotional state we can better cope with stress, resulting in a healthier body.
This recipe comes together in 7 minutes. The ingredients are basic and can be substituted. Don't like baby spinach leaves? Use arugula. Don't want to make the dressing? Use store bought or just a simple drizzle of olive and squeeze of lemon juice. Canned chickpeas make this really easy but make sure to wash them well before using them. That will reduce the sodium content in half.
Why is this recipe great for the body and mind? Baby spinach is a powerhouse superfood! It contains high levels of iron which supports key enzyme systems for energy production and metabolism. Spinach is also an excellent source of Vitamin A and C, which promote a healthy immune system. (Source: World's Healthiest Foods)
I could go on and on about the body benefits of spinach. Whenever I get the chance to add spinach to any recipe, I do! Chickpeas are full of dietary fiber that helps manage blood sugar levels and promotes healthy digestion.
This spinach chickpea salad helps promote emotional well being with the high contents of Vitamin A and C. Vitamin C promotes rational decision making and a calm mind. Vitamin A encourages positive communication. Chickpeas contain amino acids which promotes patience.
This recipe takes some time because you have to roast the veggies. But, roasting a large batch of veggies is one easy way to make sure you have healthy veggies all week long. Not just for lunch but also as a side dish for dinner. If you don't have pita pockets, this sandwich will work with gluten-free bread or any other bread you like to use for sandwiches.
Why is this recipe healthy for the body and mind? The recipe calls for eggplants, carrots and red bell peppers. Eggplants are a very good source of potassium to promote rational decision making. Carrots are high in Vitamin A to support a forgiving mind. Red bell peppers are high in Vitamin C which makes us faithful. Packed with veggies, this sandwich will help you get healthy fiber into your day to promote a healthy digestive tract.
This recipe can be doubled and use the left-overs for a healthy lunch. Left-overs for lunch doesn't get any easier. Just make more of any recipe you are cooking for dinner and lunch is done as well. The beauty of this recipe is not only is it fast but you can put the chicken on top of anything! Brown rice, noodles of your choice or steamed veggies, like broccoli.
Why is this recipe healthy for the body and mind? Chicken is a great alternative to red meat to help support a healthy body. Buy the cleanest chicken you can afford. Chicken that has been humanely treated and are certified organic contain fewer antibiotics and chemicals, which means you won't be eating those toxins.
Garlic helps support the immune system due to its sulfur compounds. It functions as an antibacterial and antiviral agent in the body that binds with Vitamin C to kill harmful microbes. (Source: World's Healthiest Foods)
This recipe supports a healthy mind due to the amino acids in the chicken. Amino acids support a joyful and enthusiastic outlook on life. Garlic is a good source of calcium which creates a clear and calm mind.
I am not trying to imply you need to lose weight! What I loved about this recipe is the soup is done in 28 minutes and has a ton of veggies in it. Soup is my favorite type of lunch. It is filling, quick to make and I like to make a big batch and freeze it. This means I can have it a couple of days for lunch and a couple of weeks later.
Why is this recipe healthy for the body and mind? This recipe calls for 4 cups of cabbage! to make life easier, I usually buy a bag of organic shredded cabbage (sometimes called coleslaw mix). Now I don't have to chop the cabbage and I get all the nutrient goodness. Cabbage is high in glutamine, an amino acid that is the preferred fuel for the stomach lining and small intestines. (Source: World's Healthiest Foods)
Cabbage is high in Vitamin K which makes us peaceful and patient. This recipe also calls for green beans, another vegetable high in Vitamin K. Being satisfied and loving happens when you eat zucchini due to its high magnesium content. Zucchini is another ingredient in this healthy soup.
Burrito bowls are a great way to get vegetables into your day. The best part is you can add any vegetable you like and omit what you don't like. This recipe calls for avocado, corn, black beans and chopped tomatoes.
Don't like black beans? Use pinto beans. Plus, the rice base doesn't have to be a white or brown rice that could take up to 45 minutes to cook. Try Seeds Of Change organic brown rice in a pouch. They take 90 seconds to heat up in the pouch or 2 minutes on the stove top.
Why is this recipe healthy for the body and mind? Brown Rice is a great gluten-free base that promotes overall health and provides energy to the mitochondria. The mitochondria are the center of our cells that are responsible for taking in nutrients and breaking them down to create energy for the cell. (Source: Biology4Kids)
Cellular energy is important to help keep the body healthy, support the function of the various systems and keeps away illness and disease. You won't get the same benefits from white rice so brown rice is the way to go!
Avocados and black beans are high in amino acids. Both promote a clear, peaceful and satisfied mind. Corn is a good source of Vitamin C, which helps us trust in life's perfection.
I hope you enjoyed learning why these quick and healthy lunch recipes promote a healthy body and mind. Whether you bring your lunch to work or just trying to eat a healthy lunch, these recipes are fast and easy enough for anyone to make.
Do you think you will try any of the above? Let me know in the comments below.