By: Mark Hyman, MD

I know it may seem like a lot to do to stay on The Daniel Plan when you already have a busy schedule. But it’s worth it. The difference you will see and feel is well worth the time investment you make in the program.

Nonetheless, I want to make this program as easy as possible to follow even if you do work full time (or more) and juggle a thousand other responsibilities. Here’s what I recommend.

Adjust the meal plan to your schedule  If you work early or late, you can adjust the meal plan to fit your schedule. Just make sure you have three meals and two to three snacks a day. Remember you should eat every 2-3 hours.

Plan for 2 days of cooking  Cook on Sundays (or whenever you have time) and mid-week (Wednesday) and do as much as you can in advance. On these cooking days you can:

Make extra brown rice  Make rice twice during the week. On Sunday, cook 2 cups of raw rice with 4 cups of filtered water, 1 tbsp. of olive oil and ½ tsp. of sea salt. Cover and leave covered, bring to boil, and simmer on lowest heat for 45 minutes. Do not stir. Optional: add 1 tsp. of turmeric or 2 round ¼-inch slices of ginger to the water when cooking. These are powerful anti-inflammatories. Keep it in the fridge and heat up as needed. Then do the same thing again on Wednesday.

Prepare vegetables in advance  Prepare enough for ½ the week on Sunday. You can either steam them all and keep in zip lock bags, or preferably keep them raw and steam them in the morning (this will take less then 10-15 minutes a day). Repeat this on Wednesday.

Use organic frozen vegetables If you do not have time to prepare and cook vegetables. Choose a wide variety of organic vegetables. Cascadian Farms provide good quality organic, frozen vegetables—almost as good as fresh.

Use canned beans  Rinse and eat straight out of the can with some olive oil, lemon and sea salt. You can place the beans and steamed vegetables in a container the night before with some olive oil, lemon juice and salt, bring it to work, and heat it up.

Use wild Alaska canned salmon as your protein source at any meal.

Shakes are quick to prepare in the morning. They take less than 10 minutes to prepare and consume!

Ask yourself if there is there something wrong with your lifestyle that doesn’t allow you to make a few simple healthy choices each week. Your body will thank you!               

Taking these simple steps will keep you healthy with little time investment. We all have busy lives, but being healthy doesn’t have to be a time burden. Improve your energy and save time during the busy weeks by using these simple tips. Your body will thank you for it!