Trying to maintain a healthy diet when spending long hours away from home can be very challenging. You are so tight on time when it comes to choosing food options every day, so most of the time you settle for buying fast food or unhealthy snacks. Then, you are stuck in an endless cycle of less than healthy lunch choices from school, to college, and even at work.

This was what happened to me when I was in college, and before I knew it I started gaining weight and spending too much money on food that isn't doing my body any good. At that moment I knew I had to make a change and make better choices when it comes to buying lunch food, because I knew trying to make my own lunch at home was not a option and it worked!

So let me share with you all the tips and info I've learned that helped me eat healthy food on a budget in college and up until now at work.

1. First of all, plan how many meals you will need. Do you need to order breakfast and lunch? Just lunch? Lunch and a snack? Know how many meals you need according to how many hours you'll be spending at university/work.

2. It's best if you eat a small meal every 3 to 4 hours, and one large meal in the day, so plan your meals accordingly.

3. We all know that breakfast is the most important meal, so you really should not skip eating it at home before you leave for the day.

4. Try to make lunch the large meal you have and rely on smaller meals through the rest of the day until dinner time.

5. Another way to make sure you don't spend too much money on food and still eat healthy, is to always bring your snacks in your bag for the smaller meals instead of buying them. Take a fruit, along with a small box of nuts or oats or even cucumber or carrot slices or even this delicious homemade baked chips.

6. Look for all the near restaurants and know what types of dishes they serve to find out your options of healthier meals instead of fast food.

7. For the large meal, avoid ordering fried food and go for grilled instead, such as grilled chicken or kofta. You can also eat pasta with red sauce or a some chicken panee pieces.

8. Don't make the mistake of drinking lots of sugary fluids like boxed juice or sodas instead of eating healthy snacks. They guarantee you fast weight gain and loss of pocket money. Replace them with fresh natural juice or infused detox water.

9. One of the worst diet habits you can make and will cause you to put on lots of weight, is munching on store bought snacks like chips or puffs that are full of oils and preservatives.

10. Finally, if you do have time to prepare your own lunch at home here is a list of easy, non-boring lunch box recipes to save you time and energy all week.

Main Image Credits: Instagram @haleyscornerr