Obviously both of us give some form of a meal plan, so that shows we are not opposed to the idea.
But it is also not for everyone or every situation.
- Can be restrictive
- Doesn’t “teach you” about nutrition
- 7-day meal plan issue – what happens if you miss a dinner? On a 7-day meal plan, you likely have bought the ingredients for the next night’s dinner too. It can create issues for the next day of eating regarding all of the ingredients you have available, sticking to each day’s structure and overall plan compliance.
- Can make it more flexible
- Doesn’t need to be structured like a 7-day meal plan
- Can teach/learn about nutrition while doing the meal plan
- Provides structure
- Comes out as a certain amount of calories/macros without tracking. Can also be adjusted based on results.
- Encourages certain behaviours that might be de-emphasised while tracking e.g. a focus on meal frequency, fibre, micronutrients and other habits
- Planning out meals can have benefits of saving time/money/food wastage
Summary and Thoughts
Overall meal plans have a time and place and can be used to provide structure, meet certain requirements for specific goals & can be used to educate someone about nutrition
How we think about meal plans also needs to be a bit broader – it doesn’t have to be a strict 7-day meal plan with everything laid out, it can be flexible whilst also providing some structure.