There’s nothing like a sugar hangover to slow you down... big time. Whether you rounded up the Reese's or savored the Skittles, the post-Halloween-sugar-crash struggle is real. Luckily, this week's featured foodie, Tasha Meys of Tastefully Tash, knows how to help us get back on track. From fritters to fruity spring rolls, these seven healthy recipes are exactly what we all need to slowly transition back to our healthy habits while enjoying every.single.bite.
There are a lot of benefits to prepping chicken meals for the week on Sunday. For one thing, you’re not dealing with raw meat more than once. Plus, who wants to think about what to pack for lunch or what to make for dinner once Monday rolls around and that to-do list explodes? Stay ahead of the game (at least where eats are concerned) by cooking chicken into pre-portioned, healthy dinners—or lunches—to enjoy throughout the week. And we’re not talking about unseasoned, blah-tasting stuff either. These 21 chicken breast recipes are simple, but they’re anything but boring.
Taste the rainbow—the healthier, non-Skittles way—with this super-straightforward recipe. The veggies and chicken are roasted at the same time in the same pan, so there’s minimal prep necessary. Add a cooked grain to round out the meal.
Skip the Middle Eastern food truck and create your own version of shawarma at home, using spices such as paprika and cumin to coat your chicken. With couscous, olives, and a tahini yogurt sauce making this portable dish taste even more authentic, you’ll be the envy of your coworkers.
Sectioned plastic containers are a must for meal-prep purposes, and this recipe is a perfect example of how useful they are. The yogurt sauce, chicken and veggies, and farro are best kept divided until it’s time to eat.
It’s easy, it’s got fewer than five main ingredients, it makes eight servings, it’s well-balanced, and it’s delicious. Magic is a pretty perfect word for this meal-prep recipe.
You can always make your own pesto, but, like most meal-preppers, if time is a limited resource for you, a store-bought version works just fine. Stir it into a pile of roasted chicken and veggies, and pack the mixture into pita pockets.
Lime juice and cilantro keep the chicken tasting light and fresh, while the spicier cauliflower rice and black bean combo gives it a kick of flavor. And since it’s equally tasty eaten hot or cold, it’s an ideal option for an on-the-go meal.
Recipes like this prove that meal prepping is totally worth it. With spicy chicken, sweet pineapple relish, and fragrant Spanish rice, it might be hard to believe, but this flavor-packed combo really can come together in just 30 minutes... and last you through four lunches or dinners.
Fiesta is right—brimming with spiced corn, brown rice, salsa, and peppers, these colorful chicken and rice bowls make every meal feel festive. They’re also prepped and ready to go in just 20 minutes. If only all parties were this easy to put together!
Skip the lines at Chipotle, but not your Mexican fix. From the chicken and the corn to the rice and the beans, these quick and easy combos give you everything you want in a burrito bowl, while kale and cherry tomatoes add even more nutrition.
These vibrant meals are as tasty as they are good-looking, thanks to seasonings like chili powder, onion powder, and paprika coating the colorful veg. There’s the option to add cheese, but with so much other fun stuff going on, we doubt you’ll miss it if you leave it out.
The Tex-Mex flavor in these hearty chicken, rice, black bean, and veggie bowls comes from the easy addition of taco seasoning. They keep well for four days, so you’re set from Monday to Thursday, with the night off on Friday to celebrate your (not so) hard work.
Sweet, sesame-coated chicken is a great complement to the simpler steamed veggies here, while brown rice (instead of the usual white) adds some extra fiber. Pack into separate containers, and it’ll look just like something out of your local Chinese take-out place.
Pasta salad is a pretty popular make-in-advance dish, but you can make it even easier by pre-portioning it for your weekday meals. This one is a satisfying mix of goat cheese, butternut squash, and walnuts; nutmeg and basil add some unique flavor.
Pack your meals in mason jars and you’ll look forward to digging into them every day. This layered salad doesn’t just look pretty, but with dried cranberries and apples alongside the chicken in a creamy Greek yogurt dressing, it gives you tons of flavor in every bite.
This recipe uses quick-cooking, microwave-friendly rice for when you're short on time (isn't that always?). Better yet, you can be completely flexible on the types of veggies and seasonings you choose to add to the dish. So open the fridge and use whatever you have in there. Just treat this recipe as an easy guide to making simple Italian-style dinners that’ll last you all week.
Buying a salad can be a smart, nutritious option, but it can also get expensive and not so healthy (can you please add goat cheese, avocado, and bacon? Oh, and eggs, and wow, that fried chicken looks good. I'll have ranch dressing, please.). This one keeps things wholesome, but with apples, sweet potatoes, blue cheese, and almonds, it’s nowhere near boring.
A creamy peanut butter sauce jazzes up chicken, rice, and veggies with some sweet and tangy Thai-inspired taste. Drizzle it on top right when you’re packing the portions into their individual containers so that there’s plenty of time for the flavors to soak up.
This recipe calls for chicken thighs, but you can easily use breasts and get away with it. Whatever you use, it’ll easily soak up the homemade teriyaki sauce, which keeps the sugar count much lower than if you were to use a bottled variety.
It’s back to basics with this three-ingredient meal. The combo is the quintessential healthy dinner—and for good reason: It’s easy to prep, affordable, and doesn’t require a lot of seasoning to be delicious.
Hold off on grabbing a greasy midday slice for lunch. This recipe, designed to make four individual meals, has the seasonings and sauce of a classic pizza, but pairs them with chicken and spaghetti squash instead of bread for a higher-protein, fiber-packed meal that’ll keep you full longer.
Magnesium always seems to pop up on the list of supplements nutritionists recommend, and for good reason: Around 60 percent of all Americans are not getting their recommended daily intake, and that can cause some pretty major problems.YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKEWhy Are People Freaking Out About Collagen Peptides—and What Do They Even Do? READ
But what is magnesium, and why does it matter so much?
As you may remember from your high school chemistry class but probably don’t, magnesium is an element (atomic number 12!) and it helps regulate a lot of the biochemical reactions in your body, including stuff like nerve and muscle function, blood pressure regulation, and protein synthesis. "Magnesium is a foundational micronutrient for hormone pathways and neurotransmitter regulation," says Taz Bhatia, M.D. Basically, it’s a critical part of the cocktail of minerals that makes your body tick.
What happens when you don’t have enough?
The more scientists delve into the role magnesium plays in different organs, the more crucial we’re realizing this mineral is, especially when it comes to preventing disease. Low magnesium levels have been associated with everything from hypertension to asthma to osteoporosis. And I can vouch for the fact that when I was pregnant, magnesium helped me with a host of problems. Constipation, for instance, cleared right up—and yeah, there’s good evidence that magnesium will take care of that too.
Beyond pregnancy, magnesium helped me at a crucial point in my life: A few years back, I fell down some stairs and ended up with a concussion that triggered migraines for months afterward. At my doctor’s suggestion, I took an increased dose of magnesium daily to help reduce the frequency of those migraines, and I was amazed to find that it helped. This didn’t work just for me out of wishful thinking, either—studies have demonstrated that low levels of magnesium can be associated with migraines.
Why you might be prone to a deficiency (and what to do about it)
So how do you know if you aren’t getting enough of this super-critical mineral? The unfortunate thing about a magnesium deficiency is that it isn’t usually detectable through blood tests because only 1 percent of your body’s magnesium is stored in your blood serum (the rest hangs out in your bones and soft tissues). That means you might not realize how depleted your magnesium levels are, even if your doctor orders a blood test.
But if you experience frequent gastrointestinal problems, drink a lot of coffee or alcohol, or suffer from anxiety, you may be especially prone to a deficiency, says Tara Campbell, ND, NAH. (Which sounds like most of us, TBH.)
The good news is that magnesium is available in a lot of good-for-you foods. "Magnesium-rich foods—including leafy greens, nuts (especially almonds) and dark chocolate are great ways to boost your levels," Bhatia says.
But if filling your diet with nuts and fish isn't doable (we don't judge), you can always go the supplement route. Just be careful which form you take. Many people make the mistake of grabbing whatever magnesium they find at the health food store without checking the label. But some are more easily absorbed in the gut (magnesium lactate, citrate, chloride, and aspartate) than others (magnesium oxide and sulfate).
However, magnesium citrate, which is often used in those powdered nighttime drink supplement meant to relax you, can cause gastrointestinal distress for some folks, Campbell says.
"Supplementing a small dose of magnesium, perhaps 200 mg, in a chelated form, is a good starting step," Bhatia explains. "Patients are often surprised when magnesium supplementation magically seems to 'cure' an ongoing sleep disorder, PMS, or constipation. A small, inexpensive dose can have a profound effect."
As with everything else related to medicine, it’s cool to learn about stuff and become your own best patient advocate, but definitely check in with your doctor