Do you know those social media “meal-prep” pics of food containers that are stacked up all perfectly in people’s refrigerators?
They’re not as great as you think.
Yes, they might look great (or “oddly satisfying,” as they say on social media) … but those plastic containers can do more harm than good.
Unfortunately, plastic storage can cause unwanted chemicals to seep into your food, which pretty much defeats the purpose of healthy eating!
To help you get the MOST health benefits out of your meal prep, I’m going to break down the dos and don’ts so you don’t unknowingly sabotage all your efforts.
TIP 1. NEVER reuse plastic water bottles or other plastic containers that food comes in (like yogurt containers). These might save you money, but they often contain harmful plastics. Instead, put them straight into the recycling bin!
TIP 2. Plastic containers that have the recycling codes 1, 2, 4, and 5 on the bottom are generally considered safe as long as they are in good shape.
Plus, they’re cheap, unbreakable, and light (a big issue if you’re taking them to and from work).
One thing to remember? Heating these containers shortens their lifespan, so the moment they start to show signs of wear (with cracks, scratches, or discoloration), send them out for recycling.
(IMPORTANT SIDE NOTE: many researchers are now questioning whether even plastics labeled “BPA-free” are safe, and they are studying the long-term health effects!)
TIP 3. Think about making the switch to glass containers.
With glass, you don’t have to worry about plastic residue. Plus it can safely go into the freezer and microwave.
And because glass containers last forever, in the long run, you will save $$$.
TIP 4. A compromise! If you bring your prepped meals to work and want a lighter/less breakable option, store your food in plastic and when it’s time to heat it, transfer it into a glass container for heating. That way you get the best of both worlds.
Here’s how I handle my food storage: I use a mix of plastic and glass.
Just something to think about!
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