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Vitality dietitian Terry Harris shares her tips for managing mealtimes while we stay home. Image: Terry Harris by Robyn Davie Photography
Vitality dietitian Terry Harris shares her tips for managing mealtimes while we stay home. Image: Terry Harris by Robyn Davie Photography

Press release -

Easy and affordable is the key to healthy meal prep in lockdown alert level 3

Vitality dietitian Terry Harris shares her tips for managing mealtimes while we stay home as well as discounts from Vitality’s new HealthyDining partners for healthy meals selected by their nutrition team.

I don’t know about you but even – perhaps especially – as a dietitian, preparing three meals a day, plus snacks (oh, the snacks!) for me and my family while we stay safe at home is a lot.

This time around, let’s try to be much better prepared to keep our meals healthy and– most importantly – stress-free. All this without succumbing to the temptation of treats that just add centimetres to your waistline.

The initial lockdown during winter made it tricky to resist comfort foods. This time, we’re enjoying beautiful, warm summer weather. A healthy braai or a substantial salad for a meal are great options for healthy and comforting food.

Be prepared to be healthy

It's easy to have short, motivated bursts of healthy eating, but being systematic and planning ahead is key to actually sustaining those habits for longer than a week or a month.

Here are some tips:

  • Buy tins: You can add canned beans, lentils and chickpeas to most dishes for added protein and fibre. Rinse them before use to remove any excess salt.
  • Frozen is good too: While tinned tomatoes without added salt or sugar are a good option for homemade pasta sauces or to use in soups or stews, other tinned vegetables tend to be high in salt. Rather opt for frozen vegetables.
  • Stock up: Dried wholegrains – such as brown rice, barley and quinoa – cooked in advance can be frozen. Add a healthy protein (I love my air fryer for this), a heap of vegetables, and you’re done!
  • Spice it up: Keep a variety of dried herbs and salt-free spices, lemon juice and vinegars in your pantry for adding flavour to meals. Garlic and chilli too, if these appeal to your palate. Try your hand at growing a few small pots of herbs – now is the season for basil.
  • Think of meals in advance and do prep on weekends: Once you’ve made a plan for the week ahead, do some slicing and dicing on the weekend. Get the family to choose and help prepare meals. Now’s the time to place that online order for delivery, or click and collect.

Let go of the guilt and save on time and effort by opting for healthy convenience foods

We know incentives work because our members are more likely to buy healthy food when they get rewarded for it. Now, we can ditch the guilt for going with convenience food and forget the pressure to prepare every meal from scratch.

The Vitality nutrition team has applied stringent criteria to select the healthiest range of convenience meals from the best partners. Vitality now offers meal kits from UCOOK, Frozen for You, Daily Dish and We are Food with discounts of up to 25%.

With HealthyDining meals that can be ordered on UberEats, from our partners: Col’Cacchio, Doppio Zero, Ocean Basket, Nando’s and Mugg & Bean, also with Vitality discounts, there are so many healthy convenience meals.

At times, convenience can be a lifesaver.

The wonderful thing about frozen meals and meal kits is that they are waste-friendly as they only provide the right amount of ingredients you need for a particular healthy meal. And you can expand your pallet by trying a single portion of a new, exciting meal without buying large quantities of each individual ingredient.

We know that last-minute food choices are often unhealthy. Cumulatively, these choices can dramatically harm your long-term health and increase your health risk during the pandemic. Combined with a home fitness plan and maintaining your mental health, you’ll be positioned to do the best for you and your family in lockdown alert level 3.

Buy, cook, eat healthy with Vitality.

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About Discovery

Discovery Limited is a South African-founded financial services organisation that operates in the healthcare, life assurance, short-term insurance, savings and investment and wellness markets. Since inception in 1992, Discovery has been guided by a clear core purpose – to make people healthier and to enhance and protect their lives. This has manifested in its globally recognised Vitality Shared-Value insurance model, active in 24 markets with over 20 million members. The model is exported and scaled through the Global Vitality Network, an alliance of some of the largest insurers across key markets including AIA (Asia), Ping An (China), Generali (Europe), Sumitomo (Japan), John Hancock (US), Manulife (Canada) and Vitality Life & Health (UK, wholly owned). Discovery trades on the Johannesburg Securities Exchange as DSY.

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About Vitality

Vitality is the largest platform for behaviour change globally, underpinning the insurance products of 14 leading global insurers, with more than 20 million members in 24 countries. It is a leading behaviour-change programme that underpins insurance and financial services, creating shared value by combining behavioural economics and clinical science to encourage and reward members for exercising more, eating healthier, managing stress, looking after and improving their health. For more information, please visit the Vitality Website or media_relations_team@discovery.co.za

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Felicity Hudson

Felicity Hudson

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