Nowadays it’s easier to find healthy meals that are packaged and ready to heat and eat instead of ordering a pizza or going through a drive through. I’m not talking about frozen meals that claim to be healthy but when you read the ingredients there are all sorts of chemicals included- you don’t want to be fueling your body with fake food. I’m referring to meals that are pre packaged and ready to pop in the oven to cook. At my local grocery store I can buy a small dish that comes with raw chicken breast or steak, potatoes, and some type of vegetable like asparagus or broccoli. It does require some effort on my part to go to the store, pick what I want, stand in line, drive home, pre heat the oven, let it cook, and then I can eat it, but that is time well spent because I am taking action that optimizes my health.
I could spend the same amount of time getting in my car, driving to a drive through, sitting in line while I wait for my food, driving home, and then eating but the health outcome of what I eat is going to be different. If I routinely decide to pick up my food at a drive through then there’s very low nutrients (protein, vitamins, minerals, etc.) and very high calories, so at the end of that meal I am overfed and undernourished which leads to an unhealthy life. Sure you could argue that the drive through saves time and I can argue that if you can’t take the extra step to get out of your car and pre heat your oven then you’re just being lazy. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m no stranger to a drive though, but they are far and few in between, and the rest of the time my food is coming from natural, whole foods that fuel me with nutrients and balance my caloric intake.
We always have power over what we chose to put in our mouth, so at the end of the day, if you’re feeding yourself from a drive though most of the time then your poor health is because of your decisions. On the other hand if you establish a firm foundation of health by feeding your body real foods the majority of the time you’re setting yourself up for optimal health. Then on those rare occasions when you treat yourself at a party or “get stuck” going through a drive through your body is going to be operating from its foundation of health so the food you eat won’t do as much damage.
Sometimes food is convenient but we can’t let convenience dictate the status of our health, sometimes we have to spend a little extra time making food at home, using ingredients that we know are good for us and contribute to a healthy life. Life is never convenient, if it was then we could all take a pill once a day that satisfied our cravings, filled us with just the right amount of calories, and most importantly supplied us with the nutrients we all need to survive, and then get on with our day. But that hasn’t happened yet, and until it does happen you have the other option, which is you’re going to have to put some effort into what you eat if you want to be a healthy human. That means you can’t be lazy and order take out or go through a drive through because you don’t feel like cooking, you have to wake up a little earlier to make your meals for the day ahead or skip an episode of your favorite Netflix show so you can cook some food for your lunch the next day. Get creative and cook in bulk so that what you have for dinner one night can become your lunch the next day, it could literally be the same meal or you can add a different profile of spices and side dishes to make it something totally different, yet still in line with your nutritional goals. It’s not about having time to be healthy, it’s about making time to be healthy. We all have the same 24 hours in the day so it comes down to how you’re spending your 24 hours and what you’re prioritizing.