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One of the top excuses for not being able to lose weight is time. In this case, it’s not completely unfounded. Taking care of your health and wellness, like any other form of self-care, does take time. Planning meals, going to the grocery store, cooking healthy food, and working out are easy not to do. That’s why they are often the first things we let slide when responsibilities at work, life at home, or commitments to the community demand more of us.

But just because Americans are busier than ever doesn’t mean that we can let health and wellness fall by the wayside. That is especially true when it comes to being overweight. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), having too much body fat increases your chances of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, musculoskeletal disorders, and some cancers. Even a little extra weight is a problem, since health risks begin to increase when you are only slightly overweight and increase as you gain more weight.

Luckily, there are plenty of ways you can prioritize weight loss and save time, starting with fresh food delivery services. Whether you’re ordering groceries online or having meals delivered to your door, these services can save you time and money while they improve your health. On top of that, it’s just downright convenient!

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Exert (Portion) Control

One of the top reasons people struggle to lose weight is actually the same as the reason we gain weight in the first place: portion control. As it turns out, maintaining a healthy weight is not just about what you eat. It’s also about how much you eat. The fact of the matter is, Americans are eating 25% more calories than they did in 1970. Fast food servings, packaged foods, and even plate sizes have all grown over the past 30 years. Unsurprisingly, so has the country’s obesity problem.

There are lots of ways to track and manage your portions, from digital food scales to measuring cups to special plates. But the key to long-term success is knowledge. Knowing what a portion size is and how to recognize how much is too much is the first step to consuming the right number of calories and jump starting your weight loss journey. A good starting point for some is using your hands to estimate common serving sizes:

  • 1 thumb = 1 tablespoon
  • 1 palm = 3 ounces (a typical serving of meat)
  • 1 handful = ½ cup
  • 1 fist = 1 cup

Meal delivery services can also help you regain control of your portion sizes. Whether you choose frozen, pre-packaged meals specifically designed for weight loss, detox juice fasts, or fresh, make-your-own dinner options, the items you receive in your meal box will be pre-measured for you. As long as you follow the instructions that come with your meal, your portion sizes will be accurate.

If you prefer a less expensive, more traditional grocery-buying experience, try a grocery delivery service. Like meal planning, grocery shopping online gives you ample opportunity to make healthy choices when it comes to what — and how much — you put in your virtual shopping cart. For example, most websites allow you to click on the nutrition label, examine the serving size, and see how much of your daily calorie allotment each food fulfills. You may figure out that half a bagel is more in line with your dietary needs than a whole one, one package of pasta should feed your family two times instead of one, or the (seemingly) miniature, 8-ounce cans of soda are actually the appropriate serving size. Plus, online grocery delivery means you don’t even have to go in the store, where all those super-sized temptations lie in wait.

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Variety is the Spice of… Weight Loss?

Another common reason people hate eating for weight loss is because they think there aren’t enough healthy food options out there. In reality, that couldn’t be farther from the truth. It’s just easy to get stuck in a food rut because it’s difficult to incorporate new types of food into our diets. And who can blame them? Many people have never even heard of a jackfruit, much less know how to prepare one.

Still, sustainable weight loss requires a lifestyle change, and that means stepping outside of your comfort zone and trying new things. When it comes to your diet, the key is not just to remove the unhealthy menu options, but to also add in new, creative meals that are good for you. Tired of chicken and rice? Try a vegan variation, like beans and quinoa, or add some Asian flair with tofu and rice noodles. With a little imagination, the possibilities are really endless.

This is another area where meal boxes can make a big difference. Meal services are a great way to try new foods and figure out which types of cuisine you’d like to work into your regular routine. Menus include global options, feature exotic ingredients, and promote new cooking styles. The best part is that each meal comes with a detailed description and step-by-step instructions, so you never have to worry about how to prepare the ingredients. It’s a great way to broaden your palate and keep your weight loss on track.

Another great way to take the guesswork out of trying new things is to look up recipes online and order the ingredients from your local grocery store. Instead of wandering the store and looking for ingredients you’re not used to buying in sections of the store you’re not familiar with, simply type what you’re searching for into the search bar. A store clerk will take care of the rest, including delivering your custom ingredients to your door.

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Healthy Foods at Hand

Perhaps the biggest struggle for people who are trying to lose weight is choosing what’s easy over what’s healthy. Whether you are lunching solo at work, preparing family dinner at home, or grabbing a bite on the go, you are more likely to stick to your plan if healthy choices are close at hand.

Think about it. When are you most likely to grab fast food or order takeout? When the fridge is empty and the pantry is bare. But what if you have a pre-cooked meal you could warm up in the microwave or all of the fresh ingredients to make a dish in 30 minutes or less? What if you could just grab last night’s leftovers from the fridge and head out the door to work?

You’ve probably heard the saying, “Good, fast, cheap. You can only pick two!” but that’s not entirely true anymore. Thanks to technology, your meals can be delicious, quick, and affordable. Meal delivery subscriptions ensure you have fresh food that’s easy to prepare every single week, and grocery delivery makes it easy to restock your shelves within a few hours from anywhere there’s WiFi. When it comes to changing your eating habits, these tools can make a huge difference.

As you consider your options, remember that the hours you spend caring for yourself are an investment. In exchange, you’ll experience the many benefits that come with improved health, like more energy, better sleep, and improved self-confidence. Not only that, but putting in the time now may just add valuable time to your life later.