Light meal

Depending on lifestyle, the light meal of the day may happen at lunch time, the usual when break time at work or school is short, or supper time.

There are an increasing number of people that have a catering service at work, college or school; they have a hearty warm meal early in the afternoon, and they require less at the evening. You can save kitchen clean up time by cooking double and preparing enough for two days. You can, either, freeze one portion, and have a convenient meal when needed, or have it just for your evening meal the following day.

If this is not your case, and lunch is you light meal, you have a wonderful opportunity to take with you a healthy packed lunch, as an alternative to fast food or ordering in. Again, you can cook double the night before and lunch on healthy leftovers. Most places will have a microwave oven to heat up your meal.

Sandwiches and rolls are popular options. Just make them the right size, no need to go over the board with the filling either. Consider wraps or pita bread with shredded lettuce, carrot, and cold meat or ham. Cherry tomatoes, carrot or celery sticks add crunch and an extra serving of vegetables. Take with you juice or a yogurt drink as a healthier option. Cheese cubes and easy to eat fruit, like grapes, cherries, bananas, tangerines, raisins, or nuts, add another healthy touch.

Soups or salads can make a nourishing meal in their own right. If you are going for a salad at lunch, make it a big one. Remember to go for protein, even if it is a light lunch. A wedge of quiche or potato omelet makes a change from sandwiches and will boost your protein intake.

Another group of people follow the traditional pattern, brown bag lunch and a home dinner during the working days, and change it altogether on the weekend, either to an afternoon cooked dinner and light evening supper, or they make it just brunch and dinner, snacks in between. Either pattern will require a light supper. There are plenty of options: pasta, quesadillas, finger foods, soup, salad, even scrambled egg on toast and a yoghurt. It depends.

Try to balance this meal with the food you had during the day. Go for carbohydrates in the evening. Carbohydrates can make you sluggish during the day, but they are easier to digest and their calming effect will lead to a restful night. If it is a salad, make it pasta salad, and add a little protein, to prevent spikes in blood sugar. A baked potato with filling, warm or cold, is another option.