A meal plan template is a useful tool in a house that caters to more than one person, especially large families.  A meal plan template is simply a way someone can plan what to cook throughout the way in a constructive way that doesn’t leave mom or the cook of the family, scrambling for something to whip up at the last minute.  It also helps with grocery shopping.  When you know what you are going to cook all week, you know exactly what to buy for each day. An argument can even be made that it has the ability to save money as well.  A clear and organized meal plan can make your life, and the lives of those around you, a smooth and happy ride.

Reasons to use a Meal Plan Template

  • Meal planning helps to avoid “impulse buys” at the grocery store.
  • You actually use items from the pantry.
  • Fresh produce is never wasted, having been let ruin in the bottom of the fridge.
  • Meal planning means more home cooked meals and less of the fattening fast food that, eaten regularly, can be dangerous to our bodies.
  • As said before, improved health from less fast food and an increase healthy and fresh ingredients.
  • Meal planning meets individual dietary requirements.
  • Meal planning leads to an increase in free time and money.

Meal Plan Templates

Using a Meal Plan Template to Avoid Impulsive Buys

You may not realize it but advertising is all around you!  All grocery stores take advantage of this is one way or another, whether it is sales on certain items or big posters promoting a new cereal.  Sometimes you can even hear the television playing a soup advertisement.  This is all to distract you from what you actually go to the grocery store for.  Shopping without a list, and a powerful will to stick to the list, can be a big bust. Meal planning can solve this problem for you so that you aren’t tempted to buy something that you don’t need.

The Health Benefits of a Meal Plan

A meal plan has many benefits but the most prominent is probably all of the health positives that come along with it.  In today’s society, many people eat out than they cook at home.  It is easier and saves time.  The mother or father can just go by a fast food restaurant and pick up food for the family.  This is okay every once and awhile, but when doing this for an extensive of time it can lead to many health problems.  With a meal plan, you know exactly what you are cooking everyday and most importantly you are cooking from home.  The fresh fruits and vegetables that you are using are packed with nutrients and vitamins that fast food just doesn’t offer.

How Meal Plans Help Family Relations

When you choose to create and stick by a meal plan, you plan to cook at home for most of the time. This is a crucial time that could be spent with the family.  Children can help cook or clean and even the husband can help out.  In a recent study, it was found that family that help each other in the kitchen have a thirty two percent likeliness to be closer as time wore on.  Having a meal plan can help you with this.

Meal Planning and Individual Dietary Needs

Allergies are very common, from something as simple as a peanut allergy to an extreme disorder like lactose intolerance.  Meal planning can help you work round these things, taking into consideration any problems that you may have.  Many fast food restaurants can’t promise that their food is untouched by certain things.  Eggs, peanuts, and milk are common things that are added in almost everything at fast food chains.

If you are vegetarian or vegan, it can also be heard to work around this. A meal plan becomes almost crucial at this point if you want to keep up a healthy and regular diet.   Many fast food restaurants are based off of animals meats and if they aren’t, then they contain animal by products so many families with these needs can’t simply go pick something up.  They have to do everything at home, unless there is a specialty restaurant.

These restraints can put a lot of stress on a family but the meal plan simply eliminates these potentially stressful times by planning ahead and organizing.

Meal Planning Template

Why are Meal Plans so Successful?

There are many reasons why meal plans work so well.  One very good reason is that it allows you to plan out what you are going to do for the entire week’s worth of food. Most people find it easier when things are planned out.  The children in the house don’t fight about what they are having and everything is know.  Mothers, and some father, find it very hard to cater to everyone’s needs because everyone is an individual with unique tastes. In this way, with a meal plan, everyone can sit down together and pick what days everyone has something that they like.  I

 

How Meal Planning can help the Overweight Population

It is no surprise that many diets revolve around planning out meals.  A meal plan can definitely help you shed a couple of pounds.  They do this by only adding low calorie and low fat foods onto the lists that they create for you to make your meal plans out of.  This also cuts out all fast food because when you are on a meal plan it isn’t allowed. This is a good thing, however, and can really help someone who just wants that bikini body or someone who has a serious weight problem and need to learn better eating habits.

Beware!  You have to be careful about how you plan your meal plans.  Many companies advertise this way.  The claim that if you follow their meal plan you will drop two or three pounds here and there. Companies can control what goes into your mouth this way and they make sure that it is their products.  This is how they make a lot of their money.  The key here is that if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

When Would It be Best Not to Use a Meal Plan

As good as meal plans are, there are some drawbacks and even some instances where it may be best to not use one.  We all know that when we commit to a diet, or just a new habit such as the meal plan, we can get a lot of self hate if we break from it. Because of this, there are certain times when we should just accept that there are going to be breaks from what we are supposed to be and accept ourselves for admitting it.

Holidays are not a good time to start a meal plan, or even be near one.  Thanksgiving with all of the turkey and other foods and christmas with all of the cakes is a time when we should just stay away from planning out meals.  It can become unpredictable and that is what we are trying to prevent with the meal plan.

 

Meal Plan Samples

How To Do Meal Plan

So how exactly do you meal plan?  It can be a hard thing to do, but if you take a couple of things into consideration you will have no problems.

The first thing that you will want to think about it is how many meals you will need to plan for.  Maybe you are going out to eat with some friends one day of the week or you just grab lunch somewhere out.  In these instances, you won’t need as much and so it would be appropriate not to buy as many things while you are out shopping for groceries.

Secondly, what are you going to have time for?  It seems like life is just getting busier and busier these days with things like technology and transportation.  You won’t always have time to sit down and have a meal, even if you want to.  This happens very frequently in the morning times.  Maybe put in some granola bars and other on-the-go type things.

Another thing to take into consideration is what you, or anyone in the house, is in the mood for that week.  You don’t want to get the same types of things every week so maybe do some research and look at other recipes that you could easily cook.  Ask young children and partners what they would enjoy as well.

The last thing you want to look at is your budget.  Most of us aren’t made of money, and that is okay.  You just have to remember that you have a certain amount of money to spend when you go grocery shopping.  Maybe get some easy to cook meals for some night and some complex ones that cost more for special occasions.

What To Do After the Meal Plan is FIlled Out

You might not notice, but having a meal plan is a lot like going on a diet because it is set up in a way that is in the same format as a diet.  Because of this many people find it hard to stay on a meal plan.  These are some tips for helping you stay motivated and on track!

  • Gather up some supporters! Just like with anything else, staying on a meal plan becomes a lot easier when you have someone rooting for you!  They provide motivation and inspirations and you could even motivate them to do the same thing you are!
  • Hold yourself accountable for your actions. While you should never really hate yourself for what you do, it is important if you mess up to make sure that you do not try to hide it or cover it up.  This can send you into remission and you may just get so discouraged that you give up.
  • Avoid the temptations that lie all around you. Whether it be buying extra things not on your meal plan at the grocery store or just eating when you aren’t supposed to or what you aren’t supposed to, you have to start telling yourself no to doing these things.  You can do it if you stay strong and motivated!
  • When on a meal plan, learn the difference between hunger and boredom.  The reason a lot of people eat up the things they lie aside for futher on in the week, it is important that you know if you are eating because you are actually hungry or if it is because you just want something to do.  When you reach for a snack in the future, just ask yourself if you feel hunger or if it is just something to do to pass time.

Meal Plan Examples

Why Are Meal Plans Important

Meal plans are important for several reasons.  Meal plans are great tools for gaining or losing weight, if that is the desired effect.  They can also help you with your energy level while balancing out you perfect amount of supplement.  We can also plan meals to help our bodies function right and to keep them in peak performing shape.  When planning meals, try to fit all of the essential nutrients into your day.  This will keep your body functioning as it is supposed to.  When you don’t plan for this you can have severe weight problems as you get too much of something or too little. Making a meal plan will make sure that you are getting everything right!

A meal plan also does an amazing job of helping you say no to the temptations that lie all around you in the form of soda and fast food.  This could possibly increase your calories and you could begin to see a weight change if you aren’t careful.  When you commit to a plan, however, you can more easily commit and stick to a plan.

Meal plans are also important because they work for a variety of people They do not work the same for everyone. The kind of meal plan you  are thinking of using may work wonderfully for someone else and not so much for you.  You can control it though and tweak it as it as you learn what ticks with you the best.

 

TemplateLab June 25th, 2017