While creating my Instagram account I was searching for a fun way to describe what I do and the focus of my photos. I knew that most of the pictures I posted would be centered around food, recipes, and my Sunday meal prepping extravaganzas. At the inception, I was following a primal diet inspired by Mark Sisson’s Primal Blueprint Book and dabbling in meal prep; I thought Paula Rose Eats Primal that’s a clever name for now. However, I soon realized that I didn’t want to be put into this box that all the meals and food I posted were of the primal or paleo variety. I needed to branch out and create a different meaning behind the P.R.E.P. acronym. Thus Plan Refine Eat Prosper was born. So what exactly does that stand for? We all know what each of those words means individually but how does it translate into the definition of P.R.E.P.? What I love about P.R.E.P. is it can be applied to meal prep or life in general.
As it relates to meal prep here is how I apply each word to my process.
PLAN: this step is critical when creating a successful meal prep day. Brainstorm a menu for the week. What will you be making? Will you eat the same thing each day or make a variety of meals? Create a grocery list for your shopping to prevent those mid-week trips to the store.
REFINE: this step is all about sourcing ingredients and reading food labels. Strive to buy organic when possible, free from preservatives and artificial ingredients. The easiest way to do this is to shop the perimeter of the grocery store and avoid packaged or premade food. When reading food labels look for hidden sugars (which can be listed under a multitude of different names), ingredeints you can’t pronounce or know what they are, and ideally 5 or less ingredients. Remember: Less is best and count chemicals (preservatives, sugars, dyes, artifical, etc.) not calories. Depending on your style of eating whether its Paleo, Vegan, Vegetarian, Mediterranean, Keto, etc. this will guide your focus for recipes and food choices. What I love about this step is that pretty much any recipe can be refined to suit your dietary needs.
EAT: After you’ve done your shopping, sourced your ingredients, and prepped your meals, now its time to eat. A few benefits to meal prep is that it allows more time during the week to focus on eating rather than cooking, it potentially frees up time you would spend on cooking to do other activities, and deters the urge for convenience food (take-out, drive thru) since your meals are made and waiting. One of the keys to eating is making sure you eat slowly and mindfully. Eating slowly and chewing your food well allows your stomach and brain time to connect to prevent overeating, aim for 75-80% fullness.
PROSPER: Eating high quality food will provide your body the vitamins, minerals, and nourishment it needs to function at top notch. A clear mind, a healthy gut, increased energy, and improved mood are a few of the benefits you may experience.
How can P.R.E.P. be applied to your life?
Plan: for success. “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail” Planning helps you get organized and create a road map for being successful in your endeavors.
Refine: to fit your needs and goals. What works for one person does not work for everyone.
Eat: foods to fuel your body, your relationship with food and your body impacts your health more powerfully than the foods you eat. “Let thy food be thy medicine”
Prosper: live mindfully, be curious, put judgement for yourself and others aside, practice an attitude of gratitude.
Let me know how P.R.E.P. applies to your life and what resonates with you. Here’s to your health and happiness!