One of the newest nutrition fads is “meal prep.” You make your meals for the whole week on Sunday and pack it up in Tupperware to be eaten throughout the week. It is said to help with weight loss as it controls what you consume at meal time. It also saves you time during the week, since you will not have to cook or prepare food for the next day.
I hate it. I don’t get it. It just doesn’t make sense to me.
We are constantly being told to eat a variety of foods to make sure we consume as many nutrients as possible. Eating many different foods makes it easier to consume a balanced diet. It is ideal to consume vegetables and fruits of different colors, as the colors can give you an idea of the different antioxidants and important vitamins and minerals they contain. It is ideal to consume different foods daily, as you may be missing an important nutrient one day, that you consume plenty of the next day.
Nutrients break down in vegetables and fruits after harvest; especially if they are not stored properly. Although meal prep-ers store their meals in the fridge, the nutrients begin to break down more quickly after the item is sliced. Once the cut surface is exposed to heat, light, and oxygen the nutrient value decreases. In addition, microwaves can strip away the food’s original nutrients. The microwave tends to change the molecular structure of the food, which weakens the nutrient content.
Meal prepping and controlling your diet may force you to crave different foods. Just because you have prepared and eaten a meal, does not mean you won’t crave something more nutritious or something that tastes better. It will not control the snacks you eat or crave daily.
The most significant reason I am not fond of this fad is that it is taking away the pleasure of cooking and enjoying your meals. To me, cooking and baking is something you do with family. You learn from your elders and from your own mistakes. My boyfriend and I’s favorite thing to do together is cook. We make time together just to cook dinner, even if we don’t finish until 10 o’clock at night. We bring our leftovers to work or make a salad for lunch the next day. This new nutrition fad is another way to make life go by faster, instead of enjoying the present and taking the time to cook meals. So much is lost in this day in age, food should not be one of them.