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The best way to eat more healthful foods is to prepare meals yourself, several food experts told Education World. Just a few hours a week of preparation can ensure that you have time to put a meal on the table without sacrificing the whole evening.

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I have a great appreciation for teachers and the world they live in, said Joy Rotondi, a former teacher and administrator, now the editor-in-chief of and a designer of Web sites for culinary companies. I think teachers bring home more work [than most people] -- not just homework, but emotional issues of the day. Its hard to turn that off and then you have to face preparing a meal.

The keys to low-stress meal preparation are a well-stocked pantry and shopping efficiently, Rotondi said. I buy fresh ingredients -- produce, meat -- once or twice a week, she said. Every three months, I do what I call The BIG shop, and buy about $300 to $350 worth of stuff. That way, you always have staples on hand.

Sketching out the work week on a note pad is another way to plan ahead, advised Daley. List which nights you are busy, tight for time, or just out. When are you in?

Jegtvig agreed. Be ready ahead of time. Prepare a grocery shopping list that includes the ingredients and healthy foods you need for a week.

Each meal should have one protein source like low fat meat, pork, chicken or fish, one serving of a starch like potatoes or pasta, and two servings of green vegetables or salads, Jegtvig added.

Cooking isnt hard work when you have everything you need, she said, but when you dont have easy to prepare foods ready, it is so much easier to bring home fast food.