The Body Retreat

The Body Retreat

Women Only Weight Loss & Wellbeing Retreats

Step away from the Sandwich

Why the Pre Packed Sandwich Lunch is Ruining your Waistline.

Lunch is such an important meal in the day.  It fuels you for the second half of the day, so get it wrong and you will find yourself craving sugar or propping yourself up with caffeine early afternoon and then your blood sugars are sent into overdrive and the afternoon slump hits big time.

For a lot of us lunch is something we eat on the go and the rise of lunch time take away meal deals makes it even easier to eat badly.  These meal deals are often carb and sugar based,  think sandwich, crisps and soft drink.  Even if you got for the healthy option that is still sandwich, fruit bag and smoothie…. sugar sugar sugar! Once all this sugar has been absorded you feel great …for about an hour or so.  Then it leave you feeling empty and vulnerable to snack attacks.

A Balanced Lunch is the Key to Avoiding Afternoon Slumps

Getting your lunch balance right sets you up for a successful afternoon and evening.  Think about it, when you eat lunch , typically 12- 1pm ish you are literally only half way through your day, so skimping here will make there rest of the day an uphill journey.  Every lunch should contain a good source of protein, some good fat and healthy veggies.

So many of the women who join us at The Body Retreat are time poor, holding down full time jobs, running busy households, being the primary carer for the family.  So often their own health and needs are quite far down the priority list.  Its can be easy to rely on convince foods to help you though a busy day.  But the the truth is that they are not supporting you in any way, in fact the are undermining your overall health and wellbeing.  Robbing you of valuable nutrients at a time when you really need them, convincing you that its ok to eat on the run to “save time”, promoting that low cal or low fat or sugar free are appropriate solutions.

The Poor Pre packed Sandwich

Consider the average pre packed sandwich, two slices of highly processed bread with added sugar, salt and other fortifiers to make it look nice and fresh in the packet for days, often smothered in low – cal mayo, again with added sugar, sweetners and salt.  The filling is generally low in protein and is almost surely not local organic and high in nutritional value,  all of this is supported by a couple of lettuce leave and a slice or two of tomato.  When you really think about the pre packed sandwich its not so attractive after all. And please don’t be tempted by the Meal Deal Sandwich, adding crisps and a soft drink for an extra few pence might seem like a great deal, but it is not a great deal for your waist line.

Don’t be fooled by the time saving properties of the repacked sandwich either. It may only take a moment or two to make your purchase, only a few minutes more to actually eat the thing.  But later in the afternoon, when you brain which has not had the nutrients it needs to be firing on all cylinder starts to feel a little foggy, your work rate begins to slow.  You start to crave something to top you up, and so the time you saved is now spent debating the rights and wrongs of a top up treat or spent nipping out for a coffee and muffin.

Those of you who have joined us on any of Our Retreats will now how much we advocate Concsious Eating.  Really taking the time to savour the healthy foods that you have chosen.  Slowing down for just a few minuets to allow your body to properly digest the foods and so allow you to avoid digestive complaints such as indigestions, heartburn, bloating, IBS etc and also helping to you never over eat again as you can hear your body signal that the hunger is now satisfied.

So even on the busiest of days aim to take at least 15 minutes to eat your lunch…. and that means no emails, no facebook, no twitter.  Just you enjoying 15 minutes of calm eating.  Your body and your mind will thank you for this.

So what is a Healthy Balanced Lunch?

Our top choices for a healthy, balanced and quick lunch are soups and salads.  Soup is great because it hydrates you and keeps you feeling full for hours.  Making a big batch in advance of your favourite soups and then freeze in individual portions so you can just grab and go and it defrosts before lunch time. Salads are actually really quick and easy to make too.  You can use prepared salad veggies to help save some time, again making the night before when you are feeling fresh and motivated will save you time the next day.  Having a healthy balanced lunch set you up for afternoon success and halve to beat those sugary craving.

Ok, so let be really honest here…. there are days when despite your best efforts you really didn’t have time to prepare your lunch in advance, or maybe you just fancy a take away lunch.  This doesn’t have to mean the end of healthy eating, by making a few simple healthy swaps you can choose a healthy lunch on the go.

Top Tips for Healthy Sandwich Lunch On The Go

  • Go to a sandwich bar rather than buy from a supermarket.  This way you can choose the sandwich that you really want the way you want it.
  • Choose a wrap rather than sliced bread, it contains fewer carbs and if you can get a whole grain wrap that extra goodness.
  • If you really want bread, make it an open sandwich, the sandwich bar can make this for you by placing your bread in a salad box and building your sandwich from there.
  • Pack in the protein, one thin little slice of ham or chicken is not enough.  You want to have about the size of a deck of cards.
  • Eggs are a great sandwich filler, but not when pre mixed with mayo.  Sliced egg with a thin spread of mayo if you much is a much better choice.
  • Load up on coloured veggies, don’t just go for the obligitary lettuce tomato and cucumber.
  • Add a good fat, avocado, drizzle of olive oil (or Rapeeseed Oil if you can get it) or even a few seeds or some organic whole butter… but under no circumstances spread.

We would love to hear from you.  What is your favourite Healthy Balanced Lunch?  Please leave us a comment in the box at the bottom of the page 🙂



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