Let’s be honest, most of us overindulged around the holidays. Who can resist those home-baked chocolate chip cookies with melty chocolate? Gingerbread men that you slowly torture by dunking first this foot, then that one into your morning coffee. What? You don’t create the psychodrama of torturing the little man of goodness?
Maybe it’s a writer thing. Anyway, new year new eating habits. For the most part it’s a reestablishment of nutritious eating guidelines. My personal approach involves simple changes that I can adapt for long-term lifestyle changes that I can live with because I have more than twenty pounds to lose.
If I make a statement like – I will not eat chocolate in 2016, it’s a lie. I might make it to the afternoon of day 1 before I am scrounging in my secret stash. It’s not just me, you do it too. If we lay down the law and state that object A is forbidden, then there is some compulsion within us that screams for it, demands it, wears on our willpower to the point that we give in. A more realistic goal will be that I allow myself 3 small pieces of chocolate throughout the week. I can live with that!
My new eating plan began on January 4th. Yeah, I’m late in posting this. I don’t have a big long list of goals to share – sorry to disappoint those of you that are used to my ‘Mega-blowout-I-am-going-to-totally-kick-ass-this-year’ list. I’m streamlining and simplifying. Two simple goals: Eat balanced meals and practice portion control. In reality there are 4 goals because part of eating balanced meals is not skipping meals. Something that I am terrible about.
I plan my weekly menu before I do my grocery shopping, to avoid impulse purchases and thwart those unhealthy items that tend to jump into my cart like chips or snack crackers and also to save some money on our groceries.
As I plan my menus, I scour food sites, pinterest, and my cookbooks for healthy nutritious meals. A typical days menu is between 1500 and 2000 calories. Throughout the week it averages 1800 calories. I plan a couple of desserts into the meal plan sticking mostly to lowfat, low sugar but still appeases the sweet tooth.
One of the changes I have been making in meal planning is using Superfoods. The following list is items that I have incorporated into our meals:
Greek Yogurt – plain, unsweetened. The ingredients on the side of the container – cultured milk – that’s it. The only ingredient. 100% milk. NO sweetener, no sugar, no additives, no chemicals.
Quinoa – I’ve made some really interesting meals with this versatile grain. Talk about filling!
Kale – chopped up kale can work like parsley in some dishes, like on top of my potato soup. It can be the main part of a salad – like my favorite citrus kale salad. I don’t care for the tough and woody stems, but the leaves are amazing.
Blueberries – Who doesn’t like blueberries? From blueberry muffins to fresh blueberries in my cottage cheese or greek yogurt, it’s like nature’s candy!
Oatmeal -This rib sticking old-fashioned breakfast is a godsend. I am not a morning person and tend to be on autopilot until after the second cuppa. Whether you make zingy lemon lifter, or blueberry blast, or my new favorite – peach and almond, it’s a versatile mainstay of our kitchen.
Salmon – We have salmon once a week. Whether as salmon croquettes, or grilled, or baked salmon is a good protein choice loaded with omega 3.
Lentils – Cheap nutrition. Lentils and rice were a mainstay of our diet when we were newlyweds on starter wages. Sometimes we added some meat to it, sometimes we didn’t. Lentils can be added to salads just as you would garbonzo beans. They can be tossed in soups and stews for added protein. Lentils are high in iron, something I need battling anemia.
There are numerous superfoods, these are just a few that I have worked into a regular rotation in our diets. Would you like some recipes with these superfoods or some others? Let me know in the comments. Trust me, I have loads of recipes. I may have to think about what my pinch translates into in a measured amount, but I am recipe rich!! If you are interested in meal plans, contact me!
Write on my friends, and eat well!