Quick and Healthy Meal Ideas for Busy Nurses!

Nurses are known for being fully committed to their work. This usually translates to more time on the job and less time in the kitchen preparing healthy meals. In an effort to prevent nurses from falling into this pattern, we’ve come up with 5 easy to make, healthy meal ideas to help provide you with the nutrients and energy that you need to get through your demanding work day. Waking up just a little bit earlier or taking some time out of the night before to put together a healthy meal will improve your focus and mood – two benefits that make a huge difference in the day to day and long run.

Night-shift nurses: we haven’t forgotten about you! Although a typical breakfast time hasn’t been in your schedule for months now, these meal ideas are still perfect to help carry you through that challenging night shift.

Breakfast: You’ve heard the old saying plenty of times, “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.” Well, it couldn’t be any truer. According to WebMD, breakfast is linked to key health benefits, such as weight control, lower cholesterol levels, and improved performance in areas such as concentration and endurance.blub

  • Start your day off on the right foot by adding some fruit to your breakfast. Blueberries have been dubbed as a “super food” by many scientists as a result of their high nutritional benefits and links to improved brain health, reduced body fat, and anti-aging properties because of the abundance of free radicals. A cup of blueberries is the perfect serving size to start off your day.
  • This delicious fruit will pair nicely with ½ cup of oatmeal boiled in 1 cup of water. Hearty and filling, oatmeal provides you with the energy you need to carry you through the day until lunch.
  • Drink 1 cup of orange juice in the morning. This tasty drink is loaded with potassium, dietary fiber, and Vitamin C!

Lunch: Lunch is a very important meal that will help carry you through the rest of the workday. Since your metabolism is highest during afternoon hours, be sure to have a well-balanced, nutritious lunch that focuses on good carbohydrates and protein.peeta malark

      • For a satisfying and filling choice try a whole-wheat tortilla roll with sliced turkey, sliced low-fat mozzarella cheese, red pepper strips, and a chilled lettuce leaf. Add a fruit salad for some extra sweetness!
      • For all of the vegetarians out there, try a whole wheat pita stuffed with vegetarian refried beans, salsa, lettuce, and shredded cheddar cheese! Apple slices with peanut butter will give you an extra boost!

Snack: We’ve all done it: Your lunch didn’t really do the trick and now you’re starving at 3 PM with at least 2 more hours on the job. “That Snickers in the vending machine sure does sound good right now…” In spite of the blissful few minutes of flavor and happiness that you feel while eating the Snickers bar, you will inevitably regret this decision about 30 minutes later when the sugar crash hits you. Avoid the unnecessary, unhealthy calories with these snacks instead!cel

      • For all you peanut butter lovers out there, this snack suggestion is perfect for you! A medium stalk of celery with 2 tablespoons of smooth peanut butter contains 195 calories rich in protein and fiber. Filling and tasty, this easy-to-prepare snack will give you a perfect guilt-free, delicious experience!
      • Fiber One Bars are packed with 35% of your daily value of fiber! Treat yourself while staying healthy at the same time with Fiber One’s Oats and Chocolate Chewy Bar! It will satisfy your sweet tooth and prevent you from crashing during the day.
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Click on this infographic for more information on healthy eating from ChooseMyPlate.gov!

Check out this infographic by MyPlate.gov for a representation of what a balanced meal would look like!

We would love to know: What meals do you eat to stay healthy and energized while on the job?

Memorial Day Blog Picture

5 Quick and Easy Red, White & Blue Treats!

Memorial Day is the day that we remember and honor those who have lost their lives while serving in the United States Armed Forces. Though we’ve been celebrating Memorial Day for almost 150 years in this country, the spirit of the holiday remains the same even today. However, the way in which we celebrate has certainly changed over the years. Where it began a sad, mourning holiday, it has grown into a celebration of life, a time to be with our loved ones and honor those lost.

Everyone is talking about their Memorial Day plans to vacation, bbq, or just relax. Unfortunately, not everyone is able to take time off from being a superhero, like so many of you in the healthcare industry! Just because you may have to work, doesn’t mean you can’t still partake in Memorial Day cravings. For those with crazy hours or barely enough time to each lunch, take some quick snacks for you and your work family to enjoy this Memorial Day weekend with some red, white & blue themed treats.

Here is a list of 5 Quick and Easy ones that will get you started:

  1. I pledge allegiance to the flag – All you need is a platter, grab some Blueberries, yogurt pretzels and cut up strawberries and be the center of attention with this delightful, healthy, and Memorial Day themed treat for your entire floor!
  1. Dip baby dip – Dip the most delicious berry in melted milk, dark, or white chocolate and toss on star shaped sprinkles. However, you don’t have to get fancy…even if you put chocolate on the side with a container of sprinkles and strawberries, it would still be a hit!
  1. Mocktails are better than cocktails – We know this is for work, so it can’t be a true cocktail…but flavored juices, whether freshly made or not, can cool you down when your shift gets too much to handle. Make up some fun names or use red, white and blue cups!
  1. The rockets’ red glare – Pack up some twizzlers that look like rockets and lay them out in grabbing reach…add some black licorice pieces to give it a kick!
  1. Bright stars thru the perilous fight – If you want to stick with some of the healthier choices, this easy cut-out technique will leave everyone in awe. Try using a star cookie cutter with all types of fruit like pineapple, cantaloupe, watermelon…etc! This is also is a great way to get your kids to eat fruits!

 

Hopefully, some of these will inspire your own creations. You can’t bring in red, white & blue themed treats without dressing the part! Make sure you sport your red, white & blue Uniform Advantage scrubs, or some of our fun holiday prints.

We would love to see some of your red, white & blue creations! Send us pictures, links, recipes…whatever you have, we’d love to see it and share it.

Memorial Day Blog Picture