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Quick Lunch Ideas for Pregnant Women
by Jennifer J. Francis, MPH, RD/LD
Q. I was wondering if you could give me some ideas for quick, healthy lunches. I'm 7 months pregnant and I've been eating pretty healthy, but my job is demanding more and more of my time and I often find myself running out of the house empty handed in the morning because I don't have time to fix anything. Then by lunch time, I end up grabbing either a snickers and a soda or a slimfast. Any ideas on something more healthy would be appreciated!
A. Honestly, what I have most for lunch is leftovers. When I am getting food ready for the table each night, I take a half portion of each food and put it on a plate that I wrap up and put in the fridge. Or sometimes I make a salad with the vegetables and meat. But of course, it sometimes gets boring eating the same thing two days in a row.
Here are some other ideas:
- Mini pitas with hummus and sprouts (or whatever other veggies you like)
- Check in the health food aisle at your grocery store for low sodium instant noodle or soup meals- you know, the kind that come in a little cardboard cup? Bring leftover veggies from home to stir in.
- Of course, the old standby--a peanut butter and banana sandwich on whole wheat bread.
- When you do your grocery shopping on the weekends, take some time to cut up some veggies and put them in little ziploc baggies to grab quickly on work days.
- Keep fresh fruit handy--maybe have a fruit bowl at your desk at work
- Load up your desk with healthy snacks--graham crackers, dried fruit, 100% juice boxes, bottled water, baked tortilla chips, lowfat pudding cups, etc.
When you do end up at a fast food joint, know that you have options! Order your sandwiches with no mayo and extra veggies. Order skim milk, orange juice, or water instead of soda, and either skip the fries, or order a small portion. You may feel ravenous when you step up to the counter, but resist the urge to order the super-size. Tell yourself that if you are still hungry when you finish your small size, that you can order seconds. Usually, you will find that you are not hungry after the small size.
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