As a type 1 diabetic, I always need to be prepared with snacks and a plan for when I will be eating throughout the day. I usually prep my breakfast and lunch the night before, and I even like to batch-cook ingredients for dinner so that I don't have to spend much time in the kitchen after work.
This is all well and good, but recently, I found myself forcing down my overnight chia pudding before work and then at lunch I felt obligated to eat my salad when what I was really craving was a sandwich. It occurred to me that all of my efforts to plan my meals was making it difficult to tune into my body and listen to what it desired in the moment.
Meal prep is all the rage these days, especially among the fitness crowd. Check Instagram on a Sunday night, and you will see many pictures of perfectly portioned batch-cooked meals ready for the week ahead. There are a lot of healthy benefits to meal prepping. You can save time and money by cooking food in advance, and having a nutritious option ready to eat prevents spur-of-the-moment takeout orders. As a type 1 diabetic, I appreciate the efficiency and security that meal planning provides. Lately, however, I've started to wonder if I am still reaping the benefits of prepping my food in advance or if this scrupulous planning was actually leading me away from my healthy intentions.
Here are three ways I felt my meal prep was detrimental and how I solved for them: