Tips for Feeding Your Family More Nutrient-Dense, Whole Food Meals
An Interview with Crystal Hood, Owner and Founder of Lazy Susan Meal Prep, Woodstock, GA
As we get busier and busier, we can fall into a habit of feeding ourselves and our families what’s most convenient, and whole and healthy choices can fall by the wayside. But if we are what we eat, we don’t want to be fast, easy, and cheap! We sat down with fellow small business owner Crystal Hood to hear her tips for feeding our families food that will nourish our mind, body, and spirit, even on the go. Enjoy this interview, and to learn more about Lazy Susan Meal Prep, follow on Facebook and Instagram.
Tell us about yourself and your business. How did the idea of Lazy Susan Meal Prep come to be?
I grew up in a home where health and wellness were top priority. My parents opened a health food store in the North Georgia mountains in the late 80’s (before it was cool, LOL). I watched them lead so many people on a path of wellness. It was inspiring to say the least. I grew up eating organic, whole, nutrient dense foods. I knew I wanted to follow in their footsteps but my talent was in culinary arts. I have cooked professionally for over 15 years.
I came up with the idea of Lazy Susan while living in Asheville, North Carolina. I had this vision of bringing families back around the table to eat a healthy meal together. I remember growing up how we always sat at the dinner table as a family and how important that was. Finding myself in a financial need, I decided to make a little extra money doing just that. I had about ten clients who I prepared meals for every week with a rotating menu of 3 lunches and 3 dinners. It was great side money, but I was still finding myself drowning in bills. It was all work and no play.
I decided to move with my son to Woodstock, Georgia to be closer to my family with only about $40 in my bank account. In less than two weeks, I was working two jobs and enjoying this new community. Once I got back on my feet, I decided to join a gym. Here is where I noticed the need for a healthy, meal prep service. So I decided to apply my knowledge in nutrition and culinary arts and start cooking for some of my fellow gym friends who had expressed they needed help with their weekly meal prep. It didn’t take long for the word to get out. Business had increased by so much that I decided to follow my true passion, quit my other two jobs and operate Lazy Susan full time.
I am amazed at how fast this business has and continues to grow! The kitchen has always felt like home to me. I feel honored that Lazy Susan helps keep our clients on track with their nutrition in an affordable and convenient manner.
How do Lazy Susan meals fit in with those trying to eat a gluten-free, paleo/keto, anti-inflammatory diet or with other specific health and fitness goals?
We follow a high protein/low fat and low sugar diet. We steer clear of GMO’s, artificial ingredients, and hydrogenated oils. Our meals are clean and mostly organic. On our menu, we provide a breakdown of macros and ingredients. We also specify which menu items are gluten free, vegan, vegetarian and whole30 compliant. We provide weight watchers points as well following the current blue plan.
What do you think are the biggest obstacles keeping people from eating more nutrient-dense, whole food meals?
100% time and convenience. People are so busy these days and many unfortunately do not have the time to prepare healthy meals at home or may not even have the knowledge with proper food combining. That is why Lazy Susan offers single serving meals that are easy to heat up or freeze. (All of our packaging is BPA free.)
What are your best tips for those wanting to do more healthy meal prep each week?
Planning your menu is key. I also recommend planning a menu that has some of the same fresh and quality ingredients. This helps with cost and time.
One pan- Fajitas
Shrimp Stir Fry
Grilled Chicken with Sauteed Veggies
With this menu you can use so many of the same veggies- Zucchini, Mushrooms, Red Bell Pepper, Onions and Summer Squash. They can all be prepped at the same time and when ready to use, add different spices and sauces.
How can we make meal prepping more efficient and FUN so that it’s not something we dread, but instead enjoy doing?
Keep it easy! Try not to over complicate your menu. Maybe invite a friend over, turn on some tunes and have a meal prep dance party in the kitchen.
What are your secrets for getting more nutritious foods into picky eater children?
I typically plan my menu on Saturday for the following week. This is something my son and I like to do together. He enjoys being a part of the planning process and having a say in what we are eating. Sometimes he enjoys cooking with me as well. For veggies he doesn’t particularly like, I blend in a food processor and hide them in his food. For example- blended zucchini and carrots often go in our meatloaf. He has no clue and loves it!
Lazy Susan’s weekly menus are posted on their Facebook page. You can also subscribe to the weekly newsletter to have the menu sent directly to your inbox. You can contact Crystal with more questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.