Much like an athlete needs to juggle training with their social life, work and/or study, many of us can relate as we find ourselves balancing a multitude of commitments at once.
From working, seeing family and friends, maintaining a regular exercise routine, and ensuring general life errands are taken care of, anything that can ease stress and assist time management can help.
Enter meal kit delivery services.
There are a range of these services available now across Australia. Before engaging with one of them it is worth being aware of the pros, cons, and how best to go about utilising them to set yourself up for success.
The biggest advantage of meal kits is the convenience factor, in that they generally provide most ingredients you require (other than pantry staples), without needing to go to the supermarket. This can ease potential stress involved in planning meals for the week and also save time physically doing a large grocery shop.
Furthermore, meal kits often provide a wide variety of meal options across many cuisines, helping to keep meals interesting and tasty while also utilising and/or teaching a range of culinary skills. We know that a healthy diet is one that is diverse in whole foods, so having different recipes encourages branching out from what you may normally eat.
Having the meals ready to go in the fridge can also reduce the likelihood of those situations in which its 6pm on a weeknight and you don’t have anything nutrient-dense at home to eat for dinner so you turn to take-away options or nothing at all.
While there are several benefits to meal delivery kits, there are some cons to be aware of. For example, allocated portions of meals provided are not tailored to individual goals, so it is important to understand what portions are best for you and to serve yourself accordingly. Any leftovers can then be eaten for lunch the next day.
Additionally, some meals provided can be relatively low in vegetables, when ideally our dinner plate should consist of at least half vegetables to ensure adequate fibre, vitamins and minerals are consumed.
The other potential barrier to using these services can be the price, as some are dearer than others and may not fit within household budgets. However, if you are frequently ordering take-away, these services can actually end up saving you money even if they seem expensive at the time of purchase.
Regardless of potential cons, meal kit delivery services can be incredibly useful in supporting individuals to consume balanced and tasty meals on a regular basis. They also still require engagement with the cooking process which can build lifelong skills in food preparation.
- Keep additional frozen vegetables in the freezer and canned vegetables in the pantry to add to those meals that don’t quite hit the vegetable portions recommended
- Address the servings allocated but eat as per your specific goals and preferences. Leftovers make great packed lunches
- Assess current spending on food and create a budget accordingly
- Keep the recipe cards of the meals you really enjoyed so that you can recreate it in the future
Keep an eye out for the next nutrition article as part of our High Performance at Home campaign, as we take a look at pre-made meal delivery services and provide our top tips for their use.