Few single men take the time to make healthy meals for themselves, relying instead on fast-food takeaways, microwave produce and other quick and easy options. They do this in the belief that cooking a ‘proper meal’ for one person is difficult, time consuming and costly.

Unfortunately, most ready meals and convenience foods tend to be loaded with saturated fat, salt and other undesirables and also lack the kind of nutritional content needed for optimal health and vitality. Thankfully, with a little planning it is perfectly possible to eat well even when your time and budget are limited.

Breakfast

The notion that breakfast is the most important meal of the day isn’t just an old wives tale – skipping the first meal of the day means your brain and body will not have sufficient fuel to achieve peak performance. The ideal breakfast needs to have a good mix of protein, carbohydrate and fibre.

A two-egg omelette made with mushrooms, spinach, broccoli or green peppers is the best option while using cheese and ham comes a close second. A slice or two of wholegrain toast will take care of your fibre needs. Preparing the vegetables the night will cut down on the time you need to spend cooking before heading off to work.

Lunch

Unless you work from home, options for a healthy lunch are always going to be limited. The best solution is to take your own food to work. Slices of cooked chicken breast sandwiches stuffed into wholemeal pitta bread are a good starting point and makes it easy to add your favourite fruits, salads or nuts.

As with breakfast, you can do a lot of the preparation work the night before to save you time on the day. Another option is to make up batches of pasta mixed with chicken or tuna and add a variety of salads or vegetables so that you can enjoy a different meal each time. This can be eaten cold but can also be enjoyed hot if you have access to a microwave.

Dinner

At the end of a long day most single men have neither the energy nor the inclination to spend hours in the kitchen slaving over a meal. Investing in a slow cooking is one way to make sure you have a hearty and healthy dinner waiting for you the moment you get home. Simple stews and casseroles take only minimal preparation and the cooking times are flexible enough to mean you never have to worry about being held up or distracted on your way home.

Another option is to cook up large batches of chilli or curry at the start of the week and keep individual sized portions in the fridge so you always have a quick meal available which can be made complete with the addition of rice, noodles or vegetables. You can even freeze your concoctions for future use.

Snacks

If you allow yourself to get too hungry during the course of the day it’s easy to find yourself snacking on sugary, high-carbohydrate foods for an instant energy boost. Carry around packs of nuts or dried fruit as these will provide everything you need to keep you going between meals but in a much  healthier way.